23 things I learned on the way to 23

Today marks the 23rd anniversary of the day I denied my Dad a game of golf (don’t feel too sorry for him, he’s well made up for it since).

It’s not exactly an exciting age- there’s no big parties to be held, you’re not legally entitled to do anything now, and Taylor Swift hasn’t written a song about you.

In my infinite wisdom (alright, not quite infinite, but bear with me) I’ve picked up a few things that have helped me through life. By a few I mean 23, each presented in the form of the great philosopher Baz Luhrmann, minus the music video.

See if any of these could hit home to you!

  • White bread is not your friend. In fact, nothing white is your friend. Especially not white clothes.
  • There will be days you don’t feel like getting up. These are the days to be most proud of getting through.
  • There isn’t a set time for everything to fall miraculously into place. It will happen when it’s all good and ready.
  • It’s perfectly ok to not have too much knowledge about politics.
  • It’s also perfectly ok to not be a size six. Or eight.
  • Don’t be ashamed for the music you listen to, the films/TV shows you watch, or the books you read. It’s your free time, and it’s your choice.
  • Not everyone you meet is going to like you. This is entirely not your fault. You are perfectly ok just as you are.


  • Look after your teeth. You only get one set.
  • Esther the bus driver was right. You can go from wanting to strangle your brother to him being a good friend in just ten years.
  • There is a whole world of possibility out there. The world is too small to stay in one place. Travel. The experience will be worth more than the money ever could.
  • Do not make time for those who don’t make time for you. You, my friend, are not second best.
  • There is one friend you can trust to advise you on any situation. Listen to them, and them only. She has never let you down before.
  • Being in a relationship doesn’t define you. Nor does it make you happier than when alone. Sharing a bed? Not really your thing.

  • Don’t feel guilty for changing what you wanted to do with your life. Who knows, this could be the best thing you will ever do.
  • Spend time with the family you have. You don’t know when they will be the family you had.
  • Stop eating Chinese food and pizza. Start eating yoghurt. And, for the love of god, cook something every once in a while.
  • Don’t over analyse failure. Look at JK Rowling.
  • Netflix is your best friend. Your education isn’t so keen on it.
  • Once you’ve found something you’re passionate about, never stop doing it.
  • “Forever 21” is called so for a reason. You are “actually 23”.
  • You will never like coffee. No amount of weaning, or experimenting in work, will change that. Ditto red wine.
  • Registering to vote is probably the most important thing you will ever do. People died so your voice could be heard.
  • Never stop learning. You were born with a naturally curious nature. Don’t lose it.


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