10 Things I Wish I Knew in My 20s
Lately, have you been feeling extra lost, confused, and uncertain? Have you been feeling like everyone else in your life seems to have their lives, goals, and future plans all perfectly mapped out? You’re not alone — because same.
It’s easy to feel like you’re falling “behind” when you compare yourself to those around you (thanks, TikTok). But to gain clarity on what it is you truly want, it’s important to take a step back and eliminate the noise.
Where can you even start? Continue reading to learn more about things I wish I knew earlier on and am still trying to learn in my late (ahh, I’m old!) 20s.
10 valuable life lessons I learned in my 20s
- People are focused on themselves. It’s easy to fall prey to worrying about what other people think of you and to develop a fear of being judged. It takes time, growth, and experience to learn to be confident in who you are. In reality, everyone is busy. People are focused on themselves and likely pay less attention to you than you may think.
- You’ll outgrow friendships, and that’s okay. We often cling to friendships that have always been there throughout different phases of our lives because they feel safe and familiar. As we grow, so do our hobbies, passions, and interests. These oftentimes don’t always align with those of the friends we’ve always had, so we may feel like we have less in common. That’s okay and normal.
- Normalize having hobbies, and keeping hobbies as that — a hobby. Don’t always try to monetize the things you enjoy to do in your free time.
- Rest is productive (and vital). You don’t have to earn rest. Rest is vital to re-energize, re-charge, and reignite passion and creativity.
- Slow down to speed up. Cue “hustle culture.” If you try to do too much all at once, you’ll end up doing nothing well and half showing up to all the things you’re trying to do — burning yourself out along the way.
- Quality over quantity — in all aspects of life.
- Strive to be a lifelong learner — post-grad. Once we’re out of the traditional schooling system, we quite literally move on to the “school of life.” Just because we’re no longer being graded on our efforts doesn’t mean we should become complacent and stagnant in pursuing growth and learning opportunities in all facets of life. Take an art class just because. Take a language class to learn to communicate better.
- How you do anything is how you do everything.
- How you define success will change over time. For some people, success equals monetary wealth. For others, success is fulfillment or having time to do the things that bring them joy. Take a moment to define what success currently means to you in the season of life you’re in, and know this will change over time.
- No one has it “figured out.” Those around you may seem like they have it all figured out and together, but odds are they’re just as confused as you beneath the surface.
The bottom line on being in your 20s
Your 20s can be confusing as heck — but these are the years of you finding yourself and giving yourself the permission to be selfish. Learning who you are and what brings you fulfillment is a never-ending journey, but all you can do is focus on the present and put one foot in front of the other to try new things as you navigate transitional periods.