Birthday Reflection: Lessons and Goals

I'm Feeling 22!

Today I am officially 22 years old. Birthdays are always fun to begin with, but they are also a wonderful time to reflect on the past year and set good intentions for the year ahead. Because of this, I wanted to share 21 things I have learned during the last 21 years of life. I'm also publicly documenting 22 goals of mine for the next 365 days.


birthday girl

21 Things I've Learned in 21 Years

  1. Everything happens for a reason. And sometimes that reason is not clear until weeks, months, or years later.

  2. God has a plan and a sense of humor with his timing.

  3. Sometimes, the best decision is the hardest one.

  4. It is okay to distance yourself from negative people. In fact, you should.

  5. You pick up on other people's energy. Surround yourself with happy people and you will start to see life in a more positive light.

  6. You are what you eat. Eat healthily and you will feel and look healthier.

  7. If you are stressing about something that won't matter five months from now, don't spend more than 5 minutes stressing about it.

  8. Mass amounts of stress wreck you and make you less productive. It is okay to remove yourself from a stressful situation to give yourself time to calm down. Then, return once you have a clearer head.

  9. Life isn't about who you know, it's about who knows you.

  10. Be a part of something you are proud of. If you aren't a part of something you're proud of, then create something you're proud of.

  11. Pay attention to your body and your health. If you know something is wrong, don't push it off, figure it out now.

  12. Family shapes you into the person you become. Be thankful for your family every day.

  13. Home is defined by the people that fill the home, not the house itself.

  14. You can travel alone successfully (as long as you bring lots of snacks).

  15. You know more than you think you do. Know your self-worth and add tax.

  16. Loved ones will pass, but the best way to honor them is to always celebrate the time and memories you had with them.

  17. Approach conflict with open ears, not an open mouth. Hearing the other person out before you jump to conclusions tends to work better for all parties involved.

  18. Going out of your comfort zone will show you what you are capable of. Plus, it will inspire your future self to try new things and not be afraid.

  19. The best friendships are the ones where time and distance don't matter.

  20. True friends will find a way to see you, call you, and care for you, even if that is from hundreds of miles away.

  21. Don't let other people's judgment cause you to doubt yourself, your choices, or your aspirations. Simply be yourself and achieve your goals.


22 Goals Before My Next Birthday

  1. Drink more water.

  2. Have better posture.

  3. Live in the moment. You can respond to emails and DMs later.

  4. Stop saying yes to everyone else. I know my limit on how many projects and favors I can handle, but I have to have the strength to enforce this limit when others ask.

  5. Start saying yes to myself. I always put others first but I can count on one hand the things I've done for my own enjoyment this past year.

  6. Keep in touch with friends and family more often. I want people to know that just because they are out of sight does not mean they are out of mind.

  7. Set aside more "me" time each week to destress and reset my mind.

  8. Stand up for myself and my friends and not worry so much about the consequences it could lead to.

  9. Become better at explaining gluten and cross-contamination to restaurants and people who have never heard of gluten. (Yes, I have been to restaurants that say "glu... what?"

  10. Graduate from SMU (This one has a pretty good chance of happening!)

  11. Get a job related to food or fashion.

  12. Be excited to go to work every day.

  13. Be a better girlfriend, friend, and family member by taking more time to listen than to talk.

  14. Write more thank you notes.

  15. Engage my creative side on a weekly basis.

  16. Workout at least once a week to help strengthen my back and prevent further back pain.

  17. Clear up my acne by eating right and using the right products on my skin.

  18. Create a steady side income from blogging through affiliate links on and sponsored collaborations.

  19. Learn Photoshop and InDesign.

  20. Master a wider variety of dinner recipes.

  21. Write a cookbook and distribute it to some friends.

  22. Stop caring so much about what other people say or think and just do what makes ME happy!

birthday girl turns 22

A Birthday Request From the Birthday Girl:

I would love for you to share a piece of advice with me. What did you wish you knew at 22 years old? What is a goal you have for the upcoming year that you are excited to accomplish?

Comment these answers below (on a desktop)!

Thanks for reading,

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