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19 Lessons At 19

Recently, I reached the grand old age of nineteen, so I thought I’d look back on all of the lessons I’ve learned throughout my childhood and teenage years in the hope that it will help some of you a little younger (and possibly older) than me! Heres nineteen lessons I’ve learned in nineteen years…

1. Despite what people will tell you, school days are NOT the best days of your life. If you accept that being told what to do and when to do it, dealing with sh*tty people, eating dinner hall food and stressing about Pythagoras theorem is the best your life ever going to get, then to be honestly I feel sorry for you. I know the rest of my life is going to be SO much better than all the years I had to waste being miserable at school.

2. Skipping class really isn’t that big of a deal- Seriously, I skipped 30% of my A Level year, completed the work at my own pace and still passed all of my subjects. I’m not saying completely ditch school, but if theres lessons you’re attending just to get your mark, time could be better spent doing revision you know works for you in a productive environment.

3. Money really does make the world go round. The older I get, the more I realise how much easier life gets the more money you have. A fat bank account doesn’t just get you new Chanel bags and sports cars, it gets you time, freedom and opportunity. At nineteen, I’m already thinking about long term investments and maximising my financial potential, because I definitely don’t want to be twenty five and still waiting for my minimum wage to drop into my bank account at the end of the month.


4. It’s really hard to get a job in retail- like really, REALLY hard. One of the biggest shocks of my adult life so far is just how much employers expect of you before they pay you £5.30 an hour- if you’re not educated, experienced, able to drive and available 24/7 (EVEN for 8 hour contracts🙄) don’t even bother applying to stack shelves. It took me 150+ applications to get my first job and knowing that that many people didn’t even deem me worthy of minimum wage was really disheartening and frustrating. Be prepared for a LOT of rejection emails.

5. Organisation is key. I wish I could go back and give my sixteen year old self a shake and tell her to get her sh*t together- I could have saved myself SO much stress during GCSE’s if I’d have been properly organised. I’m not saying you have to plan your life minute by minute, but having a calendar and a tidy room will make the world of difference to your life, I promise.

6. Fresh air and daylight will never fail to lift your mood. Whenever I’m stuck in a rut, I take fifteen minutes to go outside and let my mind and body breathe.

7. Being an introvert is fine. If you don’t want to go out clubbing every weekend you don’t have to- if staying in your own safe environment and watching a film makes you happy, do it! You’ll save your bank account and liver a lot of problems.


8.  I wholeheartedly believe EVERYTHING happens for a reason. I once read somewhere that the odds of you even existing are something like 1 in 100 trillion because of all the tiny events that had to happen at exactly the right time for you to be born, and knowing that helps me stress a little less when something goes wrong, because I know its just a tiny event happening at exactly the right time to get me to where I need to be.

9. I’ve recently found that you have to experiment before you find your passion. It might take you GCSE’s, A Levels, a university degree and ten different hobbies to find something you’re truly passionate about, but its better to have a go at everything than to think ‘what if’.

10. Bold decisions pay off. My recent step into adulthood led me to make some pretty adventurous moves, including rejecting university offers to take a gap year, deciding I don’t want to go to uni at all and working towards something completely new, and quitting my job because it was making me unhappy. Now, I’m working towards something I absolutely adore and I’m the process of finding a job that doesn’t make me feel sick at the thought of going for in the meantime.


11. Don’t feel guilty about wanting more. One night, whilst trying to enjoy a meal with my grandparents in my town centre, we were interrupted by a man clearly on drugs banging on the window who waved and laughed at us when we tutted and told him to go away. This lead me to put something along the lines of ‘I didn’t deserve to be born in Middlesbrough’ in my friendship group chat, to which someone replied ‘What, and we all did?’, which for a second, made me feel guilty. I felt like a snob for putting myself above where I came from. Then I realised- I AM worth more than being stuck in a dead end town full of drug addicts, I DO deserve to live in a nice place where I can enjoy a meal in peace, and if you don’t even place that much value on yourself then thats YOUR problem. Sometimes, I think people are threatened when you have bigger aspirations than them because they don’t have the nerve to aim high themselves.

12. An important lesson I’ve learned very recently is don’t let your boss walk all over you. No matter how young or inexperienced you are, your boss should never expect you to be at their beck and call 24/7 to do the jobs no one else wants to, because they’re definitely not going to be paying you enough for that. Yes, you have to work hard to progress, but don’t put up with being used as a zero hour contractor just because you’re young. Stand your ground and let your boss know you’re a valued member of the team like everyone else, and deserve to be treated like one.

13. You’re always a work in progress. This has been a hard lesson to learn because as a child I always believed that by this age I’d have my life together, I’d be organised, creative and successful, and I am all three, just not in the capacity or way I imaged. I’ve learned that small steps add up and it may not seem like you’re making progress, but when you look back and see how far you’ve come it’ll encourage you to keep working on yourself.


14. Being a minimalist makes your life so much easier. I’m SO glad I found this out so early in my life because it has seriously changed the way I live. I used to stress about how my bedroom looked, having one of absolutely everything in my wardrobe and making sure I had every lipstick shade, foundation and skincare product known to man. Now, I have a low maintenance, black and white, *almost clinical* room, a monochrome wardrobe and personal uniform of a t-shirt, leggings and black trainers. Make up has been the biggest change though, and now I hop out of bed every morning, cleanse and get on with my day barefaced. Getting rid of all my make up and simplifying my skincare routine has saved me SO much time and energy- I definitely think minimalism could help you if you feel overwhelmed and busy all the time.

15. Its okay to have a write off day. Sometimes, its counterproductive to attempt to get things done when you know you’re not in the right mindset to do so- your time could be better spent taking a proper break then coming back to the task with a fresh mind.

16. ‘The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago, the second best time is now.’ Whatever you want to do, get as much of a head start as you possibly can- your future self will thank you for it.

17. Drink your water, eat your veggies, take your vitamins. Taking basic care of your physical health will make you feel full of energy and on top of your game in the short term and will benefit you no end in the long term.

18. In my nineteen short years I’ve visited three continents, eleven countries and four US states and its taught me theres nothing more inspiring than travel. Life isn’t meant to be lived in one place- theres jungles, beaches, deserts, oceans, mountains, architecture, museums, galleries and cafes waiting to be explored on every corner of the globe and to me the point of life is to see as many of them as possible.

19. Life’s better when you give less f*cks. I used to get stressed over every minor inconvenience you could possibly think of, and don’t get me wrong, there are still days now where I’ll have to take deep breaths over my car key fob not working or there being no milk in the fridge, but for the most part I’m chiller than I’ve ever been. I pick and choose very carefully whats worth giving a f*ck about and whats a waste of energy.

I hope you found some of these life lessons useful, feel free to share anything you’ve learned in the comments and share your knowledge! Megan x

Ten Motivational Quotes To Live By

Recently, I’ve felt myself morphing into a member of business major twitter. I’m not quite as annoying as the people who tweet ‘Rise and grind !! 🙌🏻💦💪🏻 I just FINESSED a coffee !! ☕️ The work ! Never ! Stops !👊🏻’ but I have found myself searching ‘success quotes’ on Pinterest to give myself some motivation, so I thought I’d share the ones that have helped me in the hope they help you too.

“97% of the people who quit too soon are employed by the 3% of people who never gave up”

Don’t be one of the 97% who have to ask someone else for a day off, who have to rely on someone else to set their schedule and who let someone else control their life.

“Hustle until your haters ask if you’re hiring”

Although the words ‘hustle’ and ‘haters’ make me cringe, this quote really gives me the fire in my belly I need to get sh*t done.

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“Do what you have to do until you can do what you want to do”

I remind myself of this quote every time I’m filling out a retail assistant application or looking at flights I can’t afford to book, because I know that if I put the hard work in now, one day I’ll be able to live life on my own terms.

“Work while they sleep, learn while they party, save while they spend, live like they dream”

Similarly to the last quote, this one reminds me that sacrifices made now will benefit me later. I don’t want to completely give up my quality of life and spend every waking moment and penny I have on my future, but I do want to make sure I’m finding a balance of living in the present as well as investing in the future.

“The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago, the second best time is now”

Now I don’t want to sound like a show off, but this quote reminds me how much I’ve got my life together. Since I’m only eighteen, to plant my trees twenty years ago would have been impossible, so I’m glad I’ve started planting them as early as I possibly could in the first year of my adult life, in the form of savings to use for solid financial investments. I know that my thirty year old self will thank me for working so hard at such a young age.

“Whatever you’re thinking, think bigger”

This ones probably the cheesiest of them all, but recently I wrote a post on gaining confidence and I feel like this quote really sums it up- you should never think small because you feel like you have to- aim as high as you possibly can.


I included this quote for no other reason than I want it in my future Instagram bio for very vain, egotistical reasons. I’m not an arrogant person that likes to show everything off, but one day I want to know that I’m the boss and I’m doing a bloody good job at it.

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“Work until you no longer have to introduce yourself”

Again for no reason other than feeding my ego, I’d love to walk into a room one day and have people know who I am because of my achievements.

“Don’t stop chasing a goal because of the time it will take to complete, that time will pass anyway”

Admittedly, this is one I need to remind myself of quite often because I want to hit milestones by a ‘x’ age. So often I’m focused on having my own business by twenty and owning a house by twenty five I neglect long term projects, but I need to remember that the time will pass regardless of whether I complete them or not.

“Mum, wheres my purple rucksack?”

My last and favourite of all the quotes comes from the film ‘Eddie The Eagle’. Eddie Edwards had an adorable amount of naivety and blind confidence, and was willing to pack up his purple rucksack and head to the Winter Olympics with no experience like a child heading off for their first day of school. I think we can all learn from him and pack our metaphorical purple rucksacks and go after whatever we want, no matter how unprepared or naive we may be.


I hope these quotes gave you some motivation! Leave a comment and let me know what your favourite motivational quote is below. Megan x

Succeeding Against The Odds

In a world where people, particularly women, are shamed for thinking highly of their abilities and having ambitions, I’ve got a new found sense of self belief. At the ripe old age of eighteen I was figuring out what I wanted to do with my life and it became a toss up of film making or building my own business. After much deliberation I decided I wanted to be a property developer. Not just your standard do-er upper, but a property development business owner with branches worldwide. I became obsessed with this idea, and I truly believed I could achieve it, but for a while I rejected all other possibilities, including working in film, because building a worldwide business was a big enough goal, right? Wrong. One day I had an epiphany, why can’t I be BOTH a business owner and a film maker? Theres no laws against it, but for some reason my subconscious told me it was only possible to be successful in one area. Although I don’t have plans to direct a film and renovate a house tomorrow, I’m glad my self confidence has outweighed my self doubt and allowed me to see both are possible.

“why can’t I be BOTH a business owner and a film maker?”

I haven’t always had this much faith in myself though. When I was younger, I used to joke to my parents that I’d buy them a fancy house for their retirement when I was a millionaire, knowing full well the best I’d ever get was a five figure salary and a bungalow for them. Their standard reply was ‘yeah, if you win the lottery.’ That wasn’t because they didn’t believe I could do it myself, it was because I’m from a small town in Northern England that isn’t known for producing successful millionaires like big cities are. I’m by no means pleading poverty, I had a very privileged upbringing with everything I wanted and needed, but the sad assumption was that I’d stay where I was born and bred, earn a decent wage, but never really do anything astounding, because money and success go to those who are born into it. I used to see rich and famous people as elusive beings with superpowers only some had. I thought their success must have been down to a perfect blend of wealth and superhuman genes, but, as I’ve grown up, I’ve realised that yes, fortune does favour those that have a nice chunk of inheritance to invest, but success isn’t as exclusive and unachievable as I once believed.

“I used to see rich and famous people as elusive beings with superpowers only some had.”

Since shifting my mindset and becoming more career focused, I’ve paid close attention to people who have achieved incredible things I never thought possible, and it started with Lin Manuel Miranda. Last year I was in a taxi on the way to Manhattan, and whilst waiting for my first glimpse of the skyline, two GIGANTIC ‘Hamilton’ posters hung off a building and started me in the face. It absolutely blew my mind that one person had the creativity, initiative and sheer talent to write a whole musical, get it on Broadway and have it advertised so extravagantly in the greatest city in the world (see what I did there?). After that it continued, people such as Taron Egerton, who came from a small town in Wales and ended up starring in multi million dollar films, Sophia Aramuso, who built a $300 million dollar business from an Ebay shop and Eddie ‘The Eagle’ Edwards who, despite his lack of talent and experience, made it to the Winter Olympics using sheer determination, are all people who have proved to me just whats possible when you put your mind to it.

The final affirmation I needed came when I watched the 2018 BAFTA’s, in which Ridley Scott, a man who attended a college 20 minutes away from me and grew up looking at the same industrial skyline as me (which incidentally inspired Blade Runner) was presented with the BAFTA Fellowship Award. To know that someone from the North East was stood onstage in front of such prestigious film makers accepting an award for outstanding lifetime achievement in cinema was an incredible feeling. It well and truly proved to me that no matter where you’re from or what you were born in to, with hard work and dedication you can achieve things you never thought possible.

So now, safe in the knowledge that ordinary people just like me are writing musicals, starting businesses and winning awards, I’m more confident and determined than ever to put the work in and become just as successful as them.

Who’s someone you admire for succeeding against the odds? Leave a comment and let me know. Megan x

Iceland Photo Diary

In late January, I made my second trip of the year, and first ever trip without my parents, to Iceland with my friend Lucy. We only had four nights there so we packed in as much as possible, starting with a guided tour of The Golden Circle.

The day started with a stop off at a viewing point with INCREDIBLE views- and because at that time of year the sun doesn’t rise until around 10am- there was still a glow in the sky behind the snowy clouds.

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The next stop was a waterfall which was very, very impressive, but very, VERY cold and windy- I’m talking had-to-grab-onto-another-tourist-so-I-didn’t-get-blown-off-a-cliff windy. Never the less, it was a once in a lifetime photo opportunity so I grabbed it with both hands and got some pretty impressive shots (even if I do say so myself).

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Our penultimate stop was at a Geysir for some more snaps, followed by an extra stop our driver managed to squeeze in at a church during golden hour!

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Our next trip was to see the Northern Lights, which were unfortunately not playing the game that night and decided to show up in Scotland rather than Iceland,  so for blog purposes lets just pretend that didn’t happen and skip straight to The Blue Lagoon photos. I can honestly say it was one of the most photogenic, relaxing places I’ve ever been and I’ll definitely be going back!


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Before heading to the airport on our last day, we took some time to properly wander around the streets and soak up all Reykjavik had to offer, including the Hallgrimskirkja Cathedral and some very nordic tin houses.

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After our wander we made our way to the airport and eventually back to the UK and our own beds (Thank God) with some amazing photographs and memories. I hope you enjoyed this little snippet of the trip, I absolutely loved it and I’d 100% recommend visiting Iceland at least once!

Megan x


Why I Chose To Work In Retail Rather Than Go To University

If you’d have told thirteen year old me that I’d be turning down the opportunity to go to university in London in favour of working in retail in Middlesbrough I wouldn’t have believed you. For years I had my heart set on escaping my hometown and moving to the big city, I swore I’d never work a 9-5 and settle for a normal life, but thats exactly what I did- and I don’t regret it. This time last year, I was applying to study an undergraduate film degree, and now, I’m applying to stack shelves for minimum wage. So why did I give up my dream?

“This time last year, I was applying to study an undergraduate film degree, and now, I’m applying to stack shelves for minimum wage.”

A Need For A Slower Life

When I was in education, the pressure of exams and coursework meant I took work home with me. It wasn’t just a case of going there, doing a job and coming home, there was revision material to make, essays to write and mock exams to do. On top of this, I didn’t have any enthusiasm for my subjects so for the last six months of my A levels my life felt exhausting and eventually I just gave up going to lessons. My mind was so clouded, all I was thinking about was getting through the academic year and I didn’t have time to think properly about my future plans- I only applied to university because I was going with the motions.

I took a gap year to get away from the cycle and planned to travel, but soon realised that I didn’t want to go to a different country alone for months and so instead got a job in retail over Christmas. I found that when I started work, my life slowed down. I had regular, relatively short shifts that got me out of the house but didn’t exhaust me, I enjoyed my job, I didn’t have to take anything home AND I was getting paid. I was going at a steady pace and had time to enjoy myself properly in my time off, whilst giving myself time to think about future plans thoroughly and save up for them at the same time.

A Need For A Faster Life

As I mentioned earlier, I eventually gave up going to my A level lessons and ended up watching daytime TV most mornings, with ‘Homes Under The Hammer’ being my show of choice. I became, and still am, obsessed with the it and have set my heart on becoming a property developer for a living.

I’ve realised that although I have the opportunity to the fast life in London now using a student loan, a degree and the debt that comes with it would leave me starting from the bottom at age 22. I’d more than likely be working long hours for someone else, struggling to pay my bills, and saving up for one holiday a year. My ultimate goal is to be a successful business owner with an apartment in Manhattan and the time and freedom to go wherever I want whenever I want, which requires me to think FullSizeRender.jpg-3-1long term, be a self starter and put the long hours in now, even if it means staying in my dreary hometown for the time being. Renovating houses isn’t something you can be taught at university and unless you have enough in the bank to buy a house upfront, entering the world of property development will require months of saving, which is precisely why I’m now putting more time and effort into retail interview prep than I ever did for an A level essay. I haven’t given up on my dream of being successful by working in retail, I’ve just realised that long term results require short term sacrifices. Every hour I spend stacking shelves means more savings in the bank, which means I’ll be able to buy my first investment property, which means I’ll be able to buy more properties after that, which means I’ll be able to set up my own business, which means I’ll be able to buy an apartment in Manhattan and travel whenever I want and live the fast, big city, jet setting lifestyle I’ve always wanted.

But until then, I’m perfectly content with my steadily paced retail life, balanced with plenty of free time thats not taken up by revision, filled with blogging, theatre and cinema trips and plenty of holidays. Retail life has actually proved to be better for my mental health and work/life balance than education ever did, so I’m going to enjoy it for the next year or so, despite how much my thirteen year old self would hate me for it.

I’d love to know your thoughts on retail life; do you hate it or are you enjoying the steady pace of it like I am? Leave a comment and let me know! Megan x