25 things I've achieved in 25 years

 Well hello to you my reader chums! I turned 25 on Monday and to me, that's a big deal. Being in my twenties and reaching the midway mark came with a lot of pressure that we all experience but, honestly I'm thrilled to be 25 and I feel the best I ever have in myself. I've celebrated turning 25 in style and I'm forever grateful for everyone around me who made it so incredibly special.

Reaching a new birthday year, I like to sit and reflect on what I've learnt in the previous year, how I did when I turned 21 and 24. However, for this birthday, I wanted to look back at everything I've achieved. If you're 25 and looking back at your life, here are 25 things I've achieved in 25 years.

25 things I've achieved in 25 years

Travelled to 20 countries

I have the biggest passion for travel and one of the things I'm always thinking and dreaming about is where I'm going next or the places I've visited in the past. I have the longest list of countries and cities I want to visit; I'm excited to roam around, delve into the new culture, meet locals and eat all of the traditional cuisines. 

I'm proud and grateful to say, I've visited 20 countries (plus the many cities/regions I've visited too in those countries) and my heart and soul are ready to add 100 more to that list and one day maybe even have the opportunity to see every country in the world. I'm very lucky to have achieved seeing so much at this age and I can't wait to tick many more places off my never-ending list in years to come. Adventure fills my soul with pure joy and is the thing that makes me the happiest.

Overcome my travel anxiety

I've spoken about this many times on my blog, however, even though travel is my biggest passion, it wasn't always that way. My anxiety used to be so bad, I couldn't even leave the house, let alone get on a plane and leave the country. It took time, many of the darkest days and completely pushing myself into the unknown to get myself over the first hurdle on wanting to get better with my travel anxiety. When I booked my first girls trip 6 years ago and got a taste of the adventure, I knew at that moment it was something my heart desired, and I wanted to fight the anxiety which would stop me from enjoying the travel way of life. You can read more on how I did this in my travel anxiety post, and truly, I couldn't be prouder.

Written 5 novels

Since I learnt how to read, I knew I wanted to be an author. Books made younger me incredibly happy and they still do, immersing me in a fictional tale. I've been wanting to write a novel for the longest time, but something always got in the way. However, over the last year, I finally put my head down (thanks to furlough) and got cracking, and managed to write two adult fiction books and three middle-grade children's fiction books and I love each and every one of the stories. I now, dream of nothing more than getting them published and having my books on the shelves of Waterstones.

Learnt to love me

I talk about self-love on this blog, my journey and tips all of the time as it's something I've tried to do for years and over the past two, I would say have been the lightbulb moment of my journey. Learning to love me is still a process every day, but I've got to the point where I've learnt to accept and love all the parts of me - and accept, not every day I'm going to be my biggest fan. I'm still learning and that's the most important thing.

Built my self-confidence

Self-confidence goes hand in hand with self-love and my journey with it hasn't exactly been an easy one. Growing up, I was always shy and introverted and didn't believe in myself, second-guessing everything. But with great friends, family and a support system around me, and with age, confidence has slowly come. I'm not completely there but I've built it to a point that I'm confident in myself, who I am and I'm ready to take on anything that life throws at me. I look back at my 16-year-old self and I want to give her a hug with the lack of self-confidence that was so prominent in me. I feel a million times more confident in myself and my body, and I love that more than anything.

Passed my driving test

I love to drive. It's not like I've not ever been a confident driver, however, it did take me 5 times to actually pass as testing day made me way too nervous. But, I passed at the age of 22 and have now been driving for 3 years.

Celebrated 8 years of my blog

I'm forever grateful to have this blog to share my thoughts, my travels and things I've learnt in my adult life. It has been an online space to grow my writing, develop my marketing skills and navigate my way in the blogging community. I'm so happy I made the decision at 16 and I'm proud I've kept this blog up for 8 years, and I hope to continue it forevermore.

Built a marketing career for 6 years 

I've worked in marketing since I was 19 and I've loved over the span of 6 years how much I've grown in my knowledge, in what I can do and how I've had the ability to be creative. Over those 6 years, I've worked for various companies and met people in due course who have taught me lifelong lessons, and people I know will either be in my life for the long haul or their impression that they made in me will. I'm excited to see what the next step in my marketing career takes - and I'm so glad that when I was 18, the apprenticeship I applied for pushed me into the world of marketing.

Learnt how to cope with my anxiety

I could write about my anxiety for days and I've shared my experience in an open letter and the tips I've used to help me overcome it during the past decade. But, I'm not cured, I probably never will be. What I've learnt to realise instead is my triggers, what I can do to prevent or recover from them and the things I need to do to feel supported, and who to go to. I've been able to communicate to my loved ones what they need to do in order to help me and that has been a massive learning curve. Now, I'm in a much better position with my anxiety than I once was.

Built-up my savings

It has always been important to me to be financially independent and have my own money and savings so I don't need to rely on anyone else, and since I've started earning at the age of 18, I've kept to that promise. I've always made sure to have some sort of backup money to fall back on should I or someone around me need it. Over the last year, has been the best for my savings game and I've reached a total I'm very proud of and as I get nearer to my thirties, I want to be in a better financial position.

Maintained the best group of friends

I'm incredibly lucky for the girls I surround myself with. As we've gotten older, we're not living out of each other's pockets anymore but the love, the support and the pure joy are still prominent and I know they're always going to be there for me. Maintaining friendships can be hard as I got older, but my girls have got me and I've got them and I'm forever grateful for those solid roots that I'll have for the rest of my life.

Backpacked SE Asia

I dream about my backpacking trip far too often and sometimes I can't believe I did it and went away for 2 months, backpacking around south-east Asia. It has to be my favourite trip to date and I want to go back and do another backpacking trip again. The freedom of backpacking is a joyful feeling and everything I experienced from island hopping, meeting the elephants, eating street food to meeting fellow backpackers, locals and motorbiking on the islands, are memories I'll have for the rest of my life. I'm proud of myself for immersing in something completely new, a new way of travelling and for being away from home for that period of time.

Flew abroad on my own

Like travel anxiety, I used to have the biggest fear of flying which went hand in hand with my fear of heights. I would have panic attacks and dread the entire sensation of flying but by doing it more often, the fear slowly got better. And, around 5 years ago now, I wanted to push myself and flew abroad to see my family on my own and to date, it is one of my proudest moments.

Overcome my fear of heights

Having a fear of heights was something I lived with for years and even sometimes now, it is still there, but for the most part, I can handle it. I've been up to the tallest building in the world, climbed to incredible island views, fly freely and don't have that dreaded feeling when walking up to any sort of high buildings and that makes me happy.

Achieved the best grades in school

I was a massive hard worker at school and always had my head in a book, and was certainly one for the 'uncool' kids but to be honest, I'm glad I was the geeky girl as it set me forward in life with motivation, drive and ambition to succeed. It may have meant I went through years of bullying and not feeling good enough because of my peers, but I achieved good grades and made myself and my family proud.

Grasped the ability to let go

Letting go is something we all need to try and grasp in our life as it's so important, even though it may be the hardest thing ever. Whether it's a relationship or a job, choosing to let go when it doesn't feel right anymore will do the world of good. I don't like to say I've mastered this but I am in the process of learning it and accepting how important it is for my own mental health, and that in itself is an achievement.

Overcome many obstacles to become stronger

We all go through really hard times in life, the same way we go through the best of times, and the hard moments are what shape us as people. I've had many obstacles thrown in my way as I've gotten older especially and I'm proud I've overcome them to become a stronger human being.

Overcome my fear of crowds

My anxiety meant crowds and lots of groups of people absolutely terrified me and caused me way too many panic attacks to date. Whether I was in a club, on the tube or a crowded place in general, it freaked me out way too much. Over time, when I was getting better with my social anxiety and travel anxiety, the fear slowly got smaller and today, crowds do not bother me at all.

Learnt how to be my authentic self

Over the past year, I feel like being my authentic self has been more prominent. I've always known who I am, I'm quite a self-assured person, however people's opinions and influences always affected me over time, suppressing who I truly was. In my journey of self-love and confidence, I've learnt how to express myself and it makes me proud that I'm on the journey of living truly like myself.

Never giving up on my dreams

I'm a big dreamer, so many people always tell me how unrealistic all my goals are, but without dreams then what is the point? I know a lot of my dreams are unrealistic and maybe not feasible, but I love the push and the ambition to reach all of those goals. And even though, I'm getting knocked back, I'll never give up on my dreams.

Learnt to take accountability for my actions

As I've gotten older, I've learnt about the power of accountability and how important it is. It's not like I've always gone around blaming people, however, it can be easier to blame others for your actions rather than admitting you're wrong. Lately, I've learnt as hard as it is, to ensure I always take that accountability when I think or know I was in the wrong and admit that.

Started my own baking business

In 2018, my twin sister and I opened our own baking business, Twinnies Bake. I've adored every minute of running and growing the business and seeing the joy in customer's faces as they received our brownies/cakes/cookies/cupcakes and more.We had to take a big break due to lockdown but we're excited to get back to it and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for Twinnies Bake!

Swam/kayaked in open water

I have a lot of fears as you've probably read from this post so far but something that still is a fear for me, is open water and I'm working on it to this day. My biggest accomplishments to date around water are going parasailing, swimming in open water in Phi Phi off the boat and going kayaking in Vietnam. I look back at all of those moments with pride as even though I was terrified, I did it.

Turned 25 feeling the best in myself

My last achievement is turning 25 and feeling the best in myself that I ever had. I'm still learning to love all that is me, grow my confidence and continuously learn new things about me every day, but I'm on the road to achieving everything I want to do and want to be. I hope the year of 25 is everything I've dreamt of with all the successes and fun that comes with it. I'm forever grateful to reach this point and have those around me in my life. 25, let's see what you bring.

I hope you enjoyed this post! What is your biggest accomplishment?

Thank you for reading <3

67 comments

  1. OMG you've written FIVE novels?! That's amazing Della, I'm sure that you will get published one day! x

    Lucy | www.lucymary.co.uk

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  2. You've certainly had a lot of achievements, well done! And wow, congratulations on 5 novels, that's such an accomplishment and also flying abroad on your own, I'd love to be able to do that. Amazing post celebrating your achievements, here's to many more.

    Jordanne || Thelifeofaglasgowgirl.co.uk

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  3. Happy Birthday! Wow you have accomplished so much in your 25 years and I imagine that you will achieve so much more in the coming years too.

    Sarah | www.aspoonfulofvanilla.co.uk

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  4. What a lovely post. You've achieved so much in a relatively short space of time.

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  5. Girl, you have achieved so much!! You're such an amazing person. This goes to show that you're able to achieve whatever you want in life IF you make it happen. Such a wholesome post to read. Happiest birthday to you, Della! xx

    lenne | lennezulkiflly.com

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  6. Happy birthday, dear! As I just failed my first driving test, reading this brought a massive burst of sunshine back into my day. It is incredible what determination and a growth mindset can do. I love most of all that you are celebrating turning 25 as the best version of yourself.
    Wishing you all the best into the coming year. :)

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  7. It is so important to acknowledge our own achievements! Congrats!

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  8. Oh I love this! You should be so proud of yourself!

    Courtney x
    c0urrtney.blogspot.co.uk/

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  9. Great post! I love that you've grown your confidence over the past few years :)

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  10. Reading this made me feel a little bit proud of you, even though we only know each other within a screen! You are growing up to be an amazing woman, and you should be more than proud of yourself for being so full of achievements you had set for yourself. Happy belated 25th birthday, Della x

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    1. This is the kindest comment ever, thank you so so much!! You've made my day xx

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  11. Amazing accomplishments! SO cool that you have written 5 books <3 xx

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  12. HUGE Happy Birthday girl! And your achievements are incredible you've done so so much!

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  13. I love this! Happy birthday Della. I'm also a June baby!.. And I also feel better the older I'm getting. There's something quite liberating about accepting yourself isn't there. All of you, the good the bad & the ugly. PS. Totally didn't know you'd written 5 novels! That's blooming amazing! I wish you every success with getting them published!

    Claire.X
    www.clairemac.co.uk

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    1. Aww thank you so much, this is so kind of you!! xx

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  14. Damn, Della, you've done a lot of things! Writing a novel is not easy at all, but FIVE??? Your journey is really inspirational, and I aspire to do many of the things you have done. From traveling on my own, to create a successful life. Thanks for sharing! I hope to see many more achievements of yours in the future.

    Sejal | www.thelazygal.com

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  15. These are such amazing things to accomplish! You've done much in 25 years! Creating novels, overcoming anxiety and learning to be confident are such amazing things to learn in your 20s. I bet you'll do so much in the next couple of years too!

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  16. Sounds like you have accomplished so much! I had no idea you had written so many novels, that is amazing!

    Corinne x
    https://skinnedcartree.com

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  17. This is such a positive post, Della, I was honestly smiling all throughout! You've achieved so much to be proud of. Also UM GIRL FIVE NOVELS??? Have you posted about these because I want to know MORE! x

    mia // https://beautiful-inspiring-creative-life.com/

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so so much, your comment has made my day!! I haven't written a post about it but may do soon x

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  18. You've achieved soo much and you should be soo proud of yourself! Your career sounds like it is going from strength to strength and I can't believe you've been blogging for eight years! I've been following you for around five and a half and I love your content more now than ever before!
    Here's to the next 25 years!

    Rosie

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    1. Thank you so so much for your constant support and the loveliest comment, I really appreciate it!! xxx

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  19. Happy 25th! You've accomplished so much already, you have all reason to be proud of yourself. Hopefully you'll have your novels published at some point x

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  20. Happy birthday lovely! Wow you achieved so much. You should proud of yourself :D Cheers for the next couple of years too!

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  21. Happy Belated Birthday to you! I can relate to this post so much, with being close to your age and feeling anxiety. But I enjoyed reading all the things you did, your self confidence, your strong willpower. I love this so much. You've achieved a lot and you are going to do more amazing things for sure, I have faith in you. Congrats on your bakery business (I'll check it out)!

    You got this, Della! I love your blog btw. :)

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  22. Wow, Della, these are just amazing achievements, you are rightly proud of everything - 5 novels? FIVE??? And I didn't realise you were behind Twinnies Bakes, I'm off for a nosey right now :) x

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  23. Happy belated birthday, hopefully it was a good one.
    OMG this is a great list of achievements. Congrats on achieving all of this. I wish I had achieved this much at 25. I cant wait to see what you next.

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  24. Love this - you should be proud, you've already achieved so much! I can't believe you've written five novels haha, and I'm so jealous that you've managed to visit 20 countries - I definitely want to travel more in the coming years! Thanks for sharing x

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  25. What a fun round up post!!! I seriously want to steal this idea for my next birthday.. what an uplifting way to reflect on your time here on this planet living your best life! <3
    http://www.domesticgeekgirl.com

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  26. You've achieved so much in 25 years! Congratulations and happy belated birthday to you as well!

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  27. Amazing! You've achieved a lot in 25 years! Written 5 novels?! Started a business?! 8 years blogging?! And many more... wow! Goals, indeed. Congrats to everything you've achieved and belated Happy birthday to you! Thank you so much for sharing. You've inspired me and many others.


    www.lifebeginsattwenty.com

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  28. This post is amazing and inspiring. I wish you more success in future. The little accomplishments I have made this year is starting my own blog and overcoming fears and self doubt. I cannot wait to make a list of accomplishments on my next birthday. Congratulations to you for your all achievements!!

    Harsha | https://www.dreamwithharsha.com/

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  29. Happy Birthday, Della!
    Wow, you have accomplished so much in 25 years! Much more than some people twice your age! Congratulations for prioritizing your financial health, it will serve you well. Honestly, you've done a great job in so many areas of your life! Best wishes for many more accomplishments, insights and happiness in the years to come.

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  30. You have achieved soooo much in your 25 years, and you've grown so much as a person too! I loved reading this. I hope you have an amazing year being 25! x

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  31. Happy belated birthday and congrats on all your many achievements! 5 novels is incredible and I'm so jealous you've been to 20 countries!

    Tash - A Girl with a View

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  32. Congrats Della - this is a lot to be proud of! Happy belated, I hope you had a wonderful 25th celebrating. I didn't know you wrote 5 novels, that's so impressive - congrats!

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  33. You have achieved a lot of things. Great job on facing your fears and overcome it.

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  34. I really like the content of your article, please continue to blog.
    613 hair bundles

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  35. What an amazing journey it has been for you! You are so full of life and I hope that you enjoy every moment and seize opportunities as they come. Happy belated birthday, Della, I hope you had a fab week! x

    Lynn | https://www.lynnmumbingmejia.com

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  36. Thanks for sharing, belated Happy Birthday, congrats on all you have achiveved in your 25 years, I still have things to do, and I'm older!! :)

    Nic | Nic's Adventures & Bakes

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