Figuring things out before I turn 20 | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

It’s only about a year before I turn 20, and I find myself in transition, while I connect my present situation to my teenage life just past. It was not a completely happy metamorphosis, but of course, I can say that I’ve learned a lot.

Teenage life is indeed full of surprises. However, some of them do not surprise you in a good way; some scare you enough to make you stop trying. After everything I went through in my teen years, I think some of my experiences are worth sharing.

Some of my teenage moments could be the epitome of unproductiveness, while others are about figuring things out while growing up. Sometimes, my typical lazy teen attitude resulted in unfinished business and unachievable goals. Before, I wanted to write a story, finish a thick horror book, clean the house, exercise and do sit-ups, etc. But days passed without my achieving anything.

Suddenly other responsibilities came rushing in, leaving me no choice but to prioritize the most important ones. As a result, my other goals were abandoned, and the only thing that haunts me now is regret.

Truly, the saying “There is still a next time” can somehow be dangerous, and many teenagers nowadays may have discovered that for themselves.

Among the many exciting moments life offers us are the bittersweet college days. Back then, several organizations were recruiting members. I signed up, but got discouraged the day before the actual screening or auditions. I wanted to join the debate team, the TV production team, and the school paper, only to realize now I did not belong to any of them because I was too afraid to try. When people are busy making themselves believe they don’t have talent, the result is no growth, and we will get stuck with the thought itself.

Henry Ford once said, “If you think you can, you can. And if you think you can’t, you’re right.” This quote, which I picked randomly from a fishbowl, helped me ponder how having low self-esteem would always make you think you can’t. I realize that positive thinking plays a very important part in achieving many goals. It’s when you start believing that you find ways to make use of your time and your talents, and it is when you feel you can’t that you stop trying and  fail.


When times get rough and you can’t solve a problem alone, words of encouragement from family and friends could be useful. My mother told me, “Don’t say you’re busy because there is time for everything.” A very calming thought, with a grain of truth.  If only we had good time management, we would not be stressed much by tasks and responsibilities.

A good friend made me realize that though you involve yourself in different organizations in school, you can still take care of other priorities, if you know how to weigh things wisely. Life gets really hard, especially when the thought of the future pressures you, but when we focus on the future more than we really have to, we tend to forget the present.

Do you feel like you want to be a child again because of the many pressures you experience now? And have you ever felt like going back to the past to fix something? A friend told me, “Life is a continuous green light.” It only becomes red when we die. Some people are pressured by their age, thinking that older people enjoy more benefits and get the chance to do exciting things like applying cool make-up, enjoying the nightlife, wearing flashy dresses, and many more.  But it all boils down to one truth: no matter what we do, we can never bring the old days back, so enjoy life and whatever you have now, and try to do things you won’t regret.

Young people are sometimes pressured and sad upon seeing people who are in a relationship, while they aren’t. They are often imprisoned by a feeling that they are left out and lonely. While love blooms in unexpected seasons and places, it wilts when the time is not right for it to grow. Some people are afraid to love, others people are very excited to know what first love is, still others are enjoying love. Then there are those who have loved but lost, and those too tired to love again. Love can never be forced; it can never be bought, and certainly never be manipulated. Love will come; just wait.

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