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Thursday, December 31, 2015

15 Lessons I've Learned in 2015

I’m sure you’re all well aware that 2016 is on the horizon, bringing 2015 to a close. I can honestly say that 2015 has been a year of personal growth. At least, I hope it has. I think we all have this habit of making a million New Year’s resolutions and maybe keeping a total of two of them, but maybe life is more about making really monumental strides to be a better individual than setting unattainable, unrealistic yearly goals. Maybe life is about becoming everything you’ve ever wanted to be, one small choice at a time. Because the truth is, your life is comprised of a million tiny, insignificant decisions that amount to something pretty monumental.

I heard this statement in a message over the summer that really was a paradigm shift for me.

“It’s time to start acting like who you want to become.”

I’m sure you’re thinking, Wow, yeah, my mind is completely blown…because maybe, you’ve known this truth for ages and I’m just now catching up. But, that statement become somewhat of a life motto to me. Because, I think I get trapped into believing this mentality that you have to be a certain age to really be the kind of person you’ve always dreamed of being, or you have to be married, or graduated from college or whatever it may be. But, the truth is you can be who you want to be right now, in this very moment. It’s time to start acting like who you want to become.  

One of the most beautiful things about life is the ability to reinvent yourself. To have a fresh start. To live with the knowledge that you aren’t finished creating you were created to be. Here are some realizations I’ve come to in the past 12 months.

Without further ado, here are 15 things I’ve learned in 2015.

1.)    Not everyone is going to like you….and that’s okay.

Once again, I’m sure you’re absolutely shocked at this mind blowing revelation. But truly, it’s okay that you’re not everyone’s cup of tea. Just because a handful of people don’t care for you doesn’t mean that you are any less of a person.

2.)    The amount of followers you have is so completely irrelevant to actual life.

This is something I learned before 2015, but this year has definitely solidified my belief in the above statement. Guys, take it from someone who has “a lot of followers”. Followers and likes are SO irrelevant to real life. If you’re basing your happiness on the validation and affirmation you receive via social media, your worth will be contrived by something that is make believe. You are worth so much more than Instagram likes and Twitter Retweets.

3.)    Don’t forget the things that make you- YOU.

If you’re reading this you’ve probably already realized that I haven’t written anything since October. I know, crazy. I’ve realized that if I’m not writing and I’m not doing music, I don’t really know who I am. The whole thing kind of astounds me. If I’m not creating something and pouring my passions into an outlet, I feel completely lost and void of meaning and purpose. Don’t lose the things that make you who you are. You are who you are for a reason.

4.)    Your friendships will change…and that’s okay.

One of the hardest things about life is that it’s an ever changing cycle. Our lives consist of seasons and some friendships are not capable of transitioning to your next season. But, that’s okay, because life is all about that.

5.)    Traveling makes you richer.

Travel as often as you possibly can. Those experiences make life worth living.

6.)    You can wear navy with black.

Enough said.

7.)    Reading your Bible daily makes a massive impact on the outcome of your day/life.

Absorb the Word. Study the word. Live the Word. As Francis Chan says so bluntly, “I want to be someone who walked out of the Bible, not just the Bible belt”. For as long as I can remember I have always been obsessed with literature that was capable of moving me, whether to action or to realize a deep rooted emotion. I love the power of the written word. Words are powerful entities that have unparalleled effects. And after finishing reading the entire Bible this afternoon I am convinced that I will never stumble upon a work as powerful or life altering or moving as The Word.  No matter how many times you read it, it has the potential to speak to your heart in a way that is vastly different from the former. Trust me on this one.

8.)    Saving your money is the best thing you can do for your future.

Take it from a former shopaholic. Save. It gets you further in life.

9.)    Witnessing doesn’t have to be conventional.

I think sometimes our definition of being a witness for Jesus Christ is very limited. I think stepping out of your comfort zone and really allowing God to speak through you in a given moment is the most beautiful form of witnessing. That person on the plane or that cashier at Sam’s Club or that woman in your writing class all want to know about the love of Christ. Exude love. Radiate grace. Be unconventional.

10.) Your parents know way more about life than you realize.

Weird. Throughout the majority of your teenage years, you have this stigma that your parents have no idea what they’re talking about. But. The truth is, taking their advice beforehand saves you so much heartache.

11.) Realizing that people are imperfect and flawed, yet choosing to see the best in them anyway is one of the greatest things you can do for humanity.

Perfect humans are nonexistent, however humans are capable of having perfect moments. It is important to focus on those moments, instead of critiquing and criticizing. Because, hey. You want them to see the good in you!

12.) Drinking more coffee than is recommended per day actually makes you a happier person.

I’m just gonna leave that one.

13.) Invest in great perfume. Trust me.


14.) Every person is somebody. Each and every person you come into contact with has worth.

I think sometimes we get into this mindset that only “cool” people are worth getting to know. But every single person has worth and value and something to offer the kingdom.

15.) Moments.

Lastly, and most importantly, I’ve realized that those moments I have driving myself to work at 5:45 AM when it’s just me and Jesus are the most precious moments in the world. You know those moments where you realize how magnificent God is and how insignificant you are, yet he chooses to love you despite that. Those moments are the reason I’m alive.

Here’s to 2016. Bring it on.