— Am I the Only One?

29 unexpected lessons I learned by my 29th birthday

Birthdays are a great excuse to eat cake for breakfast and shamelessly wear party hats all day, but they also have a way of making us reflect on the past year and highlight what we’d like to accomplish in the future. I’m turning 29 this week, which means I don’t relate to the young 20-somethings anymore, but I’m not quite a 30-something yet either. While I certainly haven’t mastered the art of being an adult just yet, here are 29 unexpected and practical tips I picked up before my 29th birthday.

You never stop needing things at Target

You made your list. You checked it twice. You’re feeling great because you’re finally done with Target trips for at least a week. It is during this magical moment of gratitude that your hair conditioner runs out.

Health matters more than weight
And they’re both only your business. It’s not anyone else’s job to tell you how you should look, what you should eat, or what is best for you.

It’s okay to not like everybody
I spent a lot of my 20s trying to please everyone, which took a toll on my self-worth and mental health. Hang out with people you want. Don’t hang out with people who make you feel like a garbage pile.

Stop comparing yourself to other people
Don’t let your friends’ successes or social strides affect your self-esteem negatively. There is no standard time frame for landing your dream job. You’ll get there.

You don’t stop getting stains on things
I thought I would have outgrown this years ago.

Furniture isn’t disposable anymore
Be nice to your house things because you have to go home to them most nights. Throw down the $4 for real wood cleaner and OMG, use a coaster.

Seeing friends requires a lot of planning
And that’s why FaceTime was invented. You’re not constantly surrounded by all of your besties; we grow up and move to other places and it is really hard getting us all together again.

You don’t accomplish your dreams by sitting idly, talking about them
You have to do a lot of work. Sure, talking about them with like-minded friends or mentors is wonderful and I completely support it, as long as you counteract all that talking with actual doing.

Sacrificing your own heart in an effort not to break someone else’s is not worth it
You’re going to get your heart broken, and you’re going to break other people’s hearts. There is no avoiding this, and you’re being kinder in the long run if you are honest with yourself and anyone else involved. If you’re unhappy in a relationship, move on.

Try moving across the country a few times
It’s scary to uproot and have no idea what you’re doing. You should do it anyway.

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