28 Life Lessons From My First 28 Years

This post contains affiliate links. Read the  disclosure policy .

This post contains affiliate links. Read the disclosure policy.

The key question to keep asking is, are you spending your time on the right things? Because time is all you have.
— Randy Pausch

I just turned 28, and I’m pumped!

Although it’s not a popular milestone like the 20s or 30s, I’m choosing to celebrate it by looking back, and appreciating the things that have shaped the person I am today.

So below is a list of 28 lessons (in no particular order) that I’ve learned along my journey in this world.  

Here we go!

28 Life Lessons in 28 Years


1. What happens to you doesn’t matter as much as how you perceive and react to what happens to you. It sounds simple. But it isn’t.


2. Having brothers is a huge blessing. They might get on your nerves, but they're irreplaceable. Especially mine. :)


3. No one else thinks about you as much as you do. Deep down you know it’s true.


4. Say yes to new adventures, even if that means taking risks. I almost say no to the most breathtaking skydiving experience in Hawaii —which I’d have regretted my entire life.


5. Be grateful to your parents for everything they do for you. This involves letting them know you’re grateful. I honestly think I don’t say it enough.


6. Listen to what old people have to say. They have lived through experiences many of us can only imagine. My 93-year-old grandma is one of them.


7. Be ready to fall in love. It happens when you least expect. And it feels in.cre.di.ble. Sounds familiar?


8. Traveling is a gift. Connect deeply, explore widely, and experience consciously.


9. Pick who you hang around wisely. You've heard it said: “you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with”, and that’s true. So take some time to evaluate your relationships.


10. Don’t be afraid of criticism. As Aristotle said, there is only one way to avoid it: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.


11. Everything is negotiable. And I mean everything. But that’s for another post. ;)


12. No is one of the most important words to have in your arsenal. Learning to say it has helped me prioritize and accomplish so much more.


13. Usually it’s better an oops than a what if. It was my lifelong friend Loida who first told me this words —and oh man, she was right.


14. Goal-setting is probably the best thing you can do to improve your career. Sometimes all you need to do is going beyond immediate tasks to the big picture.


15. Focus on the things you can control. And don't waste energy on the things that you cannot.


16. Keep a journal. It’s pretty amazing to think that something so simple and as basic as writing in a journal can be so powerful. All it takes to get started is a notebook, and a pen.


17. Treat your body as a temple. Put it another way: eat well, exercise often, and get plenty of sleep.


18. Embrace change. It never never seems natural or that easy. But it’s essential to growing as an individual —both personally and professionally.


19. Practice gratitude. When you do, you’re reminded of the positive people, activities, and items that you have. I make a conscious acknowledgement of this in The Five Minute Journal.


20. Spend more time alone. Wake up a half hour or an hour earlier than everyone else and use that time to create, produce, meditate, or whatever makes you feel good.


21. If you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong. Charlie Chaplin said: "A day without laughter is a day wasted". And what could be more important?


22. Read as much as you can. Because you’re actually gaining the knowledge and experience of someone. And if you’re anything like me, you'll probably enjoy books about career that will actually teach you something.


23. Find a mentor. They say you can’t be what you can’t see. So if you really want to make it in your career, learn from someone who’s where you want to be. Reach out, ask questions, and most importantly, provide value to them. You’d be surprised how many successful people are willing to give back.


24. Realize that no matter how hard you work, not everything in life is going to turn out the way you want it. And that’s totally normal. You can accept it, change what needs to be changed, or move on.


25. Learn about personal finance as soon as you can. Remember that great class you took in school —the one that clearly taught you everything about managing your money? Me neither. That’s why reading good personal finance books is so important.


26. Always have an emergency fund set aside. No matter how well you plan or how positively you think, unexpected things happen that you need to pay for. Here’s a quick guide to creating a healthy emergency fund.


27. The sooner you start to save and invest your money, the faster it will grow. I started investing about 4 months ago and trust me, it’ll all be worth it.


28. There’s still a lot, a lot to learn. :)


Bringing it all together


Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.
— Joshua J. Marine


There you have it!

I could add so much more to this list; 28 years is a lot of life (10,220 days to be exact) and a whole lot of learning.

But I’ll leave it there for now, who knows what the next year will have in store.

Cheers to an exciting and meaningful 28! 🍻