Feeling 22

Feeling 22Yes, I’ve waited well over a year for the chance to use this blog post title. It’s here –today I’m 22!

My favorite part about my birthday is reflecting on where I thought I’d be by now this time last year. I’ve always had this thing with thinking and planning ahead. I can remember being 16 thinking that 22 was so far away, so old and out of reach. But now it’s here and I realize that I’m just getting started.

The best is yet to come.

My birthday wish is to make the next 365 days in this 22nd year count. I want to try new things, meet new people and see new places. A lot changes for me this year. I graduate college and embark on a new journey filled with enough uncertainty to drive even a less anxious person crazy.

Am I ready? Sure. Excited? Most definitely. Nervous? Totally.

I’ve learned and grown so much over the past year. I’ve had really high ups and really low downs…but I don’t think I’d change a thing. Because life really is all about living and learning.

I want to focus on 22 big lessons I’m taking from my last 22 years today.

Feeling 2222 Lessons from 22 Years

1. It is incredibly important to do something that makes you wildly happy and brings you great peace. Can I be mushy for a moment? Blogging, being a blogger, getting the chance to dump the contents of my mind here and engage with all of you is my jam. The hours I get lost in tweaking posts, responding to comments and writing (yes, mostly the writing. always the writing) gets me zen. You must have something that brings you pure contentment, or you will go insane.

2. Busy means nothing. There have been so many articles recently about ending the glorification of busy. Lot’s of people are doing lot’s of things but many of them are getting no where and have nothing to show for it. Hmmm.

3. Don’t be afraid to mess up, make mistakes and start over.

4. Don’t fake it til you make it, just do it your way until it feels really right. On the eve of my 19th birthday, I remember thinking that I was no where near ready to be in my twenties (LOL at uber dramatic freshman year Amber). I know now that it’s not about faking anything or becoming anything it’s about doing you the absolute best way that you can. Make mistakes, learn, repeat.

5. Ask questions often, but always seek out your own answers.

6. Don’t let any moment, person or thing define you that you don’t want to.

7. Be okay with letting go of what was for what might be. Change is good.

8. Trust that things amazing beyond measure are going to happen to you. You have to believe this. 

9. You have one body, be nice to it.

10. Create your own successes. Every “no” you receive is an opportunity to create your own “yeses” in life.

11. You can have it all, you can do it all –but not all at once and not alone.

12. Be genuine and transparent but not foolish. Protect yourself but don’t be cold.

13. Heartbreak can fuel passion beyond measure and lead you to unimaginable joy and breakthrough.

14. Don’t be afraid to say no to others and yes to yourself.

15. If you don’t like something and have no true intention to change it, don’t complain.

16. Evaluate the people you let into your life often. I love the quote — “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Choose wisely.

17. Move when you’re inspired. My #1 tip for getting things done is to do it the moment you are moved to and don’t stop until it’s done.

18. Eat breakfast every day and consistently drink water #H20.

19. It’s okay to decide that someone can’t be in your life anymore.

20. Good (read: best) friends are like good jeans –precious and rare.

21. Be intentional with your time. Make moments count.

I had a tough time coming up with lesson 22, but I’ve decided and truly know that it can be summed up in this quote…

22. “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Feeling 22Here’s to 22 –my best year yet.


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  1. Happy Birthday! I love these lessons, I’m 22 this year too and I really relate to them. Number 2 in particular resonates. When I was musing on comparison and how ‘busy’ people often make me feel frustrated and stagnant with my own achievement, I realised many of those people I was comparing myself to actually never had much to show for all their talk. I certainly felt a lot calmer after that.
    Also, I can remember feeling so weird and dramatic about turning 20 too, haha… but then life got so much better after that and it’s obvious everything is only beginning!
    All my best wishes for your year of 22!

  2. Ridiculously wise for 22….Love everything you write, you are so gifted…

  3. Happy birthday Amber! and I LOVE those photos!!

  4. Happy 22nd Birthday Amber!! Loved this post. Great lessons to constantly be mindful of. May you continue to grow in wisdom by Christ’s grace and see many more birthdays.

  5. Happy birthday! These are all so inspirational. I’m struggling with some of these right now but it still made me happy to read this post. And it is really ridicilous how much we change over time. I send myself one email on each birthday to be received on the next, and each year I’m so surprised by my tone, wishes and sadnesses from just 365 days ago. I hope on your 22nd year you will create all the changes you want.

    Girl Against Oleka

  6. Happy Birthday! I’m 22 too. Fun age. I hope you have a great start to 22!

  7. Happy Birthday! Hope you have a great day, and love these 22 lessons!
    Hannah x

  8. First, Happy Birthday!! I hope you have a fantastic day 🙂

    Second, Thank you for this post. I loved every lesson you wrote about. I discovered your blog not long ago and it is among my favourite. I feel like I can relate to a lot of what you are going through in terms of transitioning into the “real world” as I had to do that not long ago. I love your honesty and your outlook on life. Its super refreshing and such a great place to come to when one is in need of reassurance in their life.

  9. Happy birthday girl! I hope this is your best year yet!

  10. Happy Birthday!

  11. Happy birthday! I also love that Emerson quote. Another favorite is “It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are” by e.e. cummings. Wishing you the best year yet!


  12. Love your thoughts on what is to come and what has been. Happy Birthday!!!

  13. Happy Birthday to you!!! Sending you positive vibes all the way from the Philippines.

  14. Awesome post! Happy 22nd! 🙂

  15. so, I’m a few days late, but happy birthday! i was totally planning to use that as a blog post title in November when I turn twenty-two. I also wanted to say thank you for the sweet email you sent me! I know I’m totally lame and suck at responding to emails, but that was a such a sweet thing to say!
    xo Laura

  16. More than perfect. I love you!! (I’m catching up on missed posts. You’re my “while i eat breakfast” reading and you KNOW I need to get it together on #18.)