23 Things I learnt before I turned 23

1. Life may not go as you planned. You may still be in college at 23 and not be an independent lady, adulting and winning at life, and that is okay. Pace yourself.
2. You are going to make mistakes; lots of them. Don’t be afraid to tell your Heavenly Father that you have messed up again. He is going to throw the sins away, over and over again until you taste sweet victory.
3. Someone who truly wants to commit suicide will not make a feeble attempt. They will plan and execute successfully and very rarely, announce it to the world first.
4. Not everyone will understand you. Leave it at that. Live.
5. Self love.
6. You are worth it. You are loved. You are not ‘disturbing’ your family or friends when you fall ill or need someone to talk to. You are worth being heard. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, especially yourself.
7. Aim for excellence, not perfection.
8. Take photos. Loads of them. Take photos of what interests you. Of your feet. Of animals. Of your parents laughing. Of a tree struggling to live. Of an old building. Of your friend, unaware. Things change so fast. Keep the memories.
9. Read. Read poems about love, heartbreak, injustice, self love and about food. Read articles about the things you are passionate about or about a silly craze. Read a book that you feel is overrated and prove yourself wrong. Read newspapers and frown upon how depressing they are. Read some more.
10. Open up to your friends when you need help. If they are really your friends, they will pick the pieces with you.
11. Don’t let everyone have the privilege of knowing every detail of your life.
12. Malawi, like most third world countries, has the BEST development plans and policies; but is the WORST  at implementation. Politicians run the country and their goal isn’t to move people out of poverty.
13. Prayer is the most vital force that God ever put into the hand of mankind. Use it. It works every time.
14. Don’t save your best perfume. Use it when you feel like it.
15. When you are going through a heartbreak, a slump, a depression, don’t force yourself to get up and be productive if you don’t feel healed. You wouldn’t force a broken leg to run. Similarly, don’t force yourself to face the world. Take your time to heal. Take care of yourself first. Your health matters.
16. And remember, sometimes, just getting out of bed is enough.
17. Cry. (Don’t be shy). Then wipe those tears and be the champion that you are.
18. Take advantage of the time you feel energized. Even if it is 2AM. If you are not tired, do not sleep. Do something productive instead.
19. Write a list of things you would want in someone you would fall in love with. Check if YOU have those things. Adjust accordingly.
20. Take some time off the internet (a week or two) at least once a year.
21. When it comes to choosing friends: quality over quantity, every time. Squad pictures may look attractive, but remember, the company you keep shapes you. Cut unnecessary people out of your life ruthlessly. Make your life a masterpiece.
22. When something unfortunate happens to a friend, try to remember that it could have easily been you. Remind yourself that grace has kept you and brought you far. Remember that you are helpless without the help of God. Be Encouraging and positive. Be there for someone who needs a shoulder. This world is cruel: tomorrow could be your rainy day.
23. How to cook nsima.

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