The legend Taylor Swift penned her "30 things I learned before 30" article for Elle way back in March earlier this year and I kid you not, since the moment I read it I've had a note in my phone's notepad of a few points I would include in my own similar article. I turn 20 on the 22nd of September and here are 20 things I learned before 20 inspired by Taylor's article.

*1* | Oily skin is not a sin

in fact, it's a blessing in disguise

*2* | People might not always realise that you have anxiety and even if they do, they might never understand it

they might not realise that you're not uptight or antisocial, you're just anxious, they won't know what to say about it, they'll never know how you feel, sometimes it's not their fault, sometimes it is, that's just how it is

*3* | I'm paranoid about everything

with rape culture, robbery, murder, terrorism, gun violence and other terrible things unfortunately thriving, I'm paranoid to live

*4* | Lady Gaga is a goddamn legend

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*5* | The sole purpose of exercising is not to get skinny

it's also for staying healthy and feeling physically good
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*6* | My sexuality

a lot of people spend many, many years confused about their sexuality, queer or not, and some never truly find the confidence to come to terms with it so being able to discover my own and accept it before my 20s is a blessing. whether you come out or not to the people around you is your own personal decision but being able to love and accept yourself is the most important thing

*7* | Arguing with racists, homophobes and misogynists is never going to change anything

simply put, once a belief is set in someone's mind, it's very difficult to change it

*8* | Being able to say "no", both politely and assertively, is important to take care of yourself

*9* | Sam Smith is one of the greatest gay icons to live

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*10* | Blood isn't always thicker than water

when you're bruised and on your knees, you'll come to know who your true family is
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*11* | You don't always need to know what to say; sometimes you just have to listen

sometimes all someone who is going through a rough time needs is someone to listen to them, especially when they've bottled up their feelings for long periods of time

*12* | I learned how to curl my hair with a flat iron!!

truly a skill everyone needs
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*13* | Marriage is a social construct

no really, what is the point of it? most marriages these days end in divorce. people are still unfaithful in marriages so it's not like marriage is a significant sign of commitment. you can still love someone and be with them forever without getting married, anyway if I ever do get married, it'll be because I've lost my mind

*14* | No one person is really boring

people only call someone boring when they don't have mutual interests

*15* | Your whole body needs to be moisturized

from your face to your cuticles to your hair to your skin, everything needs to be moisturized to be healthy
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*16* | Gratitude

sometimes life is hard and painful. but there is always someone who has it worse, but that also doesn't mean that your struggle is invalid, it just means that life could be much worse. there is a lot to be grateful for even in times of hardship
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*17* | The 5x5 rule: If it won't matter in 5 years, don't spend more than 5 minutes on it

*18* | I finally learned how to cook

now at least I won't starve to death when I have to live on my own
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*19* | Time heals everything

over time, some wounds heal completely and others heal and form scars, the bleeding and pain stop but the lesson stays
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*20* | I learned to start believing that one day, real love will come

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***** fin *****
Here's to the 20s!
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I hope you liked my article. If you've turned or are going to turn 20 this year, I wish you great things <3