This girl turned 20 last thursday! I can´t wrap my head arount the fact that I´ve been in this world for two decades already! Turning 20 isn´t such a huge deal, I believe, because it doesn´t come with any privileges like turning 18 did. But still, having a 2 in the front makes me a bit excited to be honest.  Growing up, I always thought you would be mature, wise and have your life under control at the age of 20. Defenitely a misconception, my younger self had for quite some time. I don´t feel mature at all - okay, maybe only when that adult life kicks in when cleaning my apartment, buying groceries and stuff for my washing machine and dishwasher. I managed to move out of my parent´s house last year which of course came with lots of lessons to learn, so I thought I´d share 20 lessons I´ve learned during my 20 years on this planet.

1. Life is so much more fun when you can laugh about yourself: Laughing about myself is something I am really good at, I would say. Generally, I am laughing 24/7 and with all the confused and also dumb things I do and say, life is just more fun when not only my friends can laugh about them, but I can laugh together with them.
2. Find happiness in the little things: for example finding 4 peonies for only 2€ in a supermarket and being the happiest person afterwards
3. Don´t be afraid to ask: I am often to shy or ashamed to ask someone for help or advice, but especially during the last months, I learned to just ask straight away because there is no reason to be afraid of the answer.
4. Surround yourself with good people: people that support you, make you happy, make you laugh 
5. You don´t have to be friends with everyone: you don´t have to be friends with people you don´t like. Life is too short for that.
6. Approach problems immediately: I often think about problems for ages, go through every possible scenario in my head, when in reality, this problem can be solved in one conversation
7. Don´t overthink everything: this also relates to the last point. I often overthink a lot of things, which is totally unnecessary, because in the end, they turn out completely different - in a good way.
8.Don´t upset about things that are out of your control: I used to be the person that would get into a rage every now and then especially when going home by train when my train was delayed. At some point I just thought it´s not worth it to get upset about this out of your control. Just take them as they are, because getting upset about them is not going to change anything.
9. Don´t act based on prejudices: always be open-minded! Such an important quality.
10. Treat others the way you want to be treated: I always try to be polite and friendly, because that is just the way I want to be treated. We should all remember this from time to time.

11. Kindness doesn´t cost a damn thing: same as the last point, a little more kindness and also more compliments towards others can change things to the better and they are for free! 
12. Just be yourself: why pretent your somebody else just to please somebody else?!
13. Learn something new every day: this is kind of ironic in my current situation of preparing for my exams 8h a day 7 days a week, but even if your not studying or going to school, never stop learning
14. Just say YES! sometimes, just say yes to the craziest things to step out of your comfort zone and be reckless for a day 
15. Accept yourself: when I was younger, I used to hate my curls and also my skin was in a pretty bad condition due to acne. Over the years, I just started to accept my curls to the point that right now, I am really happy I don´t have straight hair (and luckily, my skin got better on its own) 
16. Trust your gut: this especially helped me when choosing which university to go to. I had the choice between Amsterdam, Pforzheim and a couple of other cities. Of course, living in Amsterdam would have been amazing but in the end, Pforzheim was defenitely the right choice for me 
17. Be proud of your achievements: during my early teenage years, it wasn´t cool to have amazing grades and study a lot. That never really bothered me, but when somebody asked me about my grades (which were usually really good) I could never proudly answer. So being proud of your achievements is something I learned especially during the last year.
18. You don´t always have to be the responsible one: I would consider myself to be quite a responsible person, and I think a lot of my friends would say the same, but sometimes, you can just stop being responsible for a night and dance your heart out and just have fun.   
19. Make time for friends and family because they are the real deal!
20. Appreciate the things you have right now, don´t take anything for granted and don´t look for them, when they are gone



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