10 Life Lessons You Should Learn In Your 20s
There’s so much you learn about life in your 20s, and not all of it comes from experiences and mistakes. You pick up a thing or two from your peers, but you won’t believe how many life lessons you actually learn from your own family. Mom, dad, your siblings — they know what they’re talking about. And while there’s no pressure to do what they say, asking them for an opinion will definitely take you a long way. It’s still your call at the end of the day, but sometimes, it doesn’t hurt to ask for help and advice.
Your 20s are all about experimenting and learning, and figuring for yourself who and what you are, and what you want to be. The other side of being a 20-something is realising that not everything is as it appears, and sometimes what you think is true may really not be. So without ado, here are 10 things you should learn not to assume in your 20s.
1. Success will not necessarily bring you happiness.
Succeeding in a career of your choice, at a task at hand, or even in college won’t necessarily bring you happiness. Telling yourself that you’ll be happy only when you accomplish something is to say that you’re going to be happy one day. But remember that happiness cannot and should not be deferred. Instead, learn to be happy in the present. Yes, do your very best in life, but learn to find happiness in the little things because success is no guarantee of happiness. You might be surprised by how fleeting that feeling is in real life. You should be chasing happiness, not success.
2. You’ve got to work for things to come to you.
Yes, some things will come to you when the time is right, but sitting around waiting for them to happen isn’t the right approach. Hoping for things to magically work out is just stupid. You’ve got to work for it. Nothing in life comes for free. You’ve got to make sure that as long as it’s in your control, you have to work your way to the top to achieve your goals. Good things come to those who hustle, girls.
3. You don’t have all the time in the world.
No, you really don’t. As much as you believe that you have a long way to go to do all the things you love, know that you really don’t. You only have now to make a difference, and your efforts today will help you reap the benefits of your hard work tomorrow. What’s more, we often tend to keep things for later thinking that we’ll have the time — be it fulfilling a long-cherished dream, learning a new skill, taking up a hobby, switching careers, getting married — but the younger you start the better it is. You’re far more adaptive to change when you’re in your 20s, because life has a way of… just getting in the way when you’re older and have more responsibilities. Also, don’t assume that your people will be around forever. Want to express how you feel? Do it now.
4. Not all your friends will last a lifetime.
While some of the friends you’ve made in school and college will remain lifelong pals, know that not everyone will stick around. A lot of your friendships will not last and that’s not a big deal. Understand that those who want to stick around will make an effort to do so. This works both ways. Relationships take time and effort, and you need to put in as much work into it as anything else. But there are also times when you grow up and realise that you’ve just plain outgrown certain friendships, especially when they don’t add value to your life anymore. Your 20s are all about meeting new people and making new connections, but your 30s usually means whittling down your list of close friends down to just a few that matter.
5. People are not judging you all the time.
If you’re spending your entire day worrying about what people think of you, let me break this to you: They couldn’t care enough. As harsh as that sounds, it’s true. Nobody cares enough to be sitting around judging you all day, and if they do you really shouldn’t bother about their opinions. After all, what good could come out of obnoxious judgemental people? No matter what you do, they’ll be judging you. So make a move and start living your life exactly the way you want to. You might as well make it fabulous!
6. People won’t necessarily be nice to you, because you’re nice to them.
Sometimes you don’t get back what you give out. And the sooner you stop assuming this, the better your life will be. No matter how nice you are, there are people who won’t like you. And no matter how hard you try to understand the reason behind it, you will never figure it out. So drop it and just know that you can’t please everyone. Even chocolate isn’t a universally loved thing, so who are you!
7. Shopping will not make you forever happy.
There’s only so much shopping can do. And while it will make you momentarily happy, it won’t last. And the solution isn’t to go out and buy more stuff. You need to understand why you have an OCD towards shopping. Stop looking for happiness in material things. You aren’t going to find it there. Know what genuinely matters to you and follow up with that. Be it your family, friends, or even spending time by yourself.
8. Stop believing that eventually it will all work out.
No, it won’t. Nothing comes easy. And it definitely doesn’t come on a silver platter. You got to work for the things you want in your life. Living your life is way better than watching others live theirs from the sidelines. Moreover, stop drowning in self-pity. You’ve got to be the badass in your story, not the guest appearance (or the villain). So stop waiting for things to happen to you, instead go out and get them done. This doesn’t mean that everything will work out. But if you’ve put in your all and it still doesn’t work, you’re not to blame. Stop overthinking and just do what you do best.
9. Everyone has miserable days, you’re not the only one.
You can’t judge how happy someone is based on their online presence. Your friend might look like she has an amazing boyfriend or that she’s having the time of her life on that vacation — her life may basically appear perfect to you from her Instagram or Snapchat — but it’s not. People have the same issues you do but you can’t see that because nobody displays the shitty parts of their life on social media. So don’t believe everything you see. It’s just a small part of the big picture. We’re all very similar and its stupid of you to assume that you’re the only person sitting home on a Friday night watching TV. Half the world is doing that and whining about it. You’re not alone.
10. Nobody is perfect.
Don’t idolise someone so much that you get depressed about everything you’re not doing with your life. Your friend may have a closet full of designer clothes, or your bestie may be the prettiest girl you know, but none of these things should get you down or highlight your supposed imperfections. You’ll realise soon enough that nobody is perfect. Every single person is struggling to fight battles of their own. So understand that and stop with the pity party. Take inspiration from them instead on how to be a badass!