It is 9:37 pm. You’re sitting on your couch, a glass of wine in one hand, while the other scrolls through Netflix aimlessly. Whether you just finished college or are in the middle of exams or finding your dream job or are just trying not to look at what the most popular girl from college is doing on her Instagram story, you know for sure that you feel confused. Welcome to your 20s! As 20-somethings, we are often told that this is the decade where we are supposed to figure everything out. Find what we are passionate about at 22, create a life plan with our significant other by 27 and jot down a 10-year agenda, work-wise, by 30. We are often asked about where we see ourselves in 10 years as if life is a straight path with no winding curves and cul-de-sacs with no surprising twists and bittersweet moments.
Well, I am here to tell you the exact opposite. I am here to tell you that this is the decade where you will—and should—make mistakes. Where you should discover your true calling, whether that might be to teach surfing in Bali or working on Wall Street. The 20s is the decade where your mistakes will not define who you are—or will be—but how you choose to rise from them, will.
Here are five important things to keep in mind while navigating your 20s, and I hope these can give you the perspective, hope and courage that you require to be your true self.
Sowing seeds of self-doubt in your mind is one of the worst things you can do. Comparing yourself to the girl in your class who just landed her dream job or the boy who is heading to an Ivy League will only drain you out. Such comparisons deter you from what your end goal is— to be your true self. Everyone is a work in progress. What we often do not see is that everyone is fighting their own battle, just like ourselves. It is always easy to say that some have it easier than others, however, it is imperative to understand that life is often a result of our own choices and actions. So buckle up and get ready, because it will be a roller coaster of emotions!
Here’s a quote by Steve Furtick that’ll help you relate to this better:
Don’t compare your behind the scenes to everyone else’s highlight reel.
Your affair with your 20s will be a passionate one, so make sure you enjoy it thoroughly. The only way to do that is if you are indulging in activities that truly make you happy—not your parents, not your friends, only you. At times, I often considered that a role in finance would be the best for me, given what my parents expected. Nevertheless, my true affinity is writing, and therefore following this dream is what I am doing. As cliche as it sounds, life is actually what we make of it—what we choose to do with the situations we have been placed in. So as soon as we realise that we are in control of what we want to do, the better! So go join that ballet class, start learning the guitar, go to the gym, go write in the cobbled streets of Paris—it is never too late.
Here’s a quote by Benjamin Mee that’ll help you relate to this better:
You know, sometimes all you need is 20 seconds of insane courage. Just literally 20 seconds of just
embarrassing bravery. And I promise you, something great will come of it.
One of the common mistakes that all of us make is to believe that we have to find ‘the one’ as soon as possible. So many girls tear their hair over not having found the right person yet. Only when we engage in positive activities that better ourselves, will we attract the right person for us. Love will find you, but once you are ready for it. Often times, when we are in a relationship, we sometimes forget to cater to our hobbies and needs. Change never comes from a place of comfort, and therefore, forget about finding the one, instead focus on all those amazing things you want to do for yourself. So, till then, sit back and enjoy the single person’s ride, fall in love with yourself first, make yourself the right person first and then magically everything will fall into place. Here’s a quote by Niki Rowe that’ll help you relate to this better:
Like a wild flower, she spent her days allowing herself to grow. Not many knew of her struggle, but
eventually all knew of her light.
Not to sound like a romantic comedy put on repeat, however, travelling is one of the best things you can do in order to complete your soul searching and find (yes, you guessed it) your true self. Even if it is a day at the hiking place nearby or a 5 day trip to Bhutan, make sure you take a trip. Solo trips help you recognise your true potential. Fear lies outside of your comfort zone, so we must try to overcome our fears, step by step. Travelling to places will give you a fresh perspective, allowing you to meet people you would have never dream of meeting. Here’s a quote by Augustine of Hippo that’ll help you relate to this better:
The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.
In today’s day and age, where beauty comes pre-defined as small, petite and scarless, learn to embrace your body regardless of what society deems as beautiful. I find Jameela Jamil, an advocate of body positivity, very motivating. She stresses the importance of loving every scar, every pimple, all of your cellulite—because they make up you. We must see the beauty of human beings—that we come in all shapes, sizes and colours. With this true diversity, we can really begin to live in a society that is forward. Start with yourself—whether you’re a size 0 or a size 10, do not beat yourself up for what societal standards of beauty are. If you love yourself, everyone will too. Here’s a quote by Buddha that’ll help you relate to this better:
You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.
Alas! there you have it. A list of ingredients to make this concoction of your 20s a bit lighter. Don’t get me wrong—these years definitely will not be a walk in the park, however, if you stay true to yourself, you will see all the pieces
falling into place.
So, do you have any tips for making your 20s easier? Leave us your thoughts in the comments below!
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