Wellbeing

5 Life Lessons To Make Your 20s Suck Less

Ahh, the early twenties, when you don’t know what the hell you’re doing, who the devil you are or why on earth you’ve been put on this planet. But never fear, anyone who doesn’t feel the same way is just pretending to know what they’re doing and generally won’t figure out what they want in life until they’re actually doing it. Some don’t ever figure it out.

So, these are the thoughts that circulate my mind on a daily basis, please humour me and tell me that I’m not the only one? I hope that this is in some small way helpful to the other bewildered twenty-somethings out there.

#1 Everyone is moving at a different pace

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Just because one of your besties got an internship at the biggest media platform in Sydney, and the other has moved to Melbourne to pursue a career in music (she is actually 100% killing it with her ethereal, angelic voice, which in comparison makes you sound like a dying cat), doesn’t mean you’re a failure, you just haven’t gotten there yet. And yes the aforementioned is a summation of what I’ve been competing with for the past six months (even though it’s not a competition). Not to mention your childhood bestie who got a journalism job at one of the largest stations in Australia… but I’ll just keep writing away in my dark little den.

But seriously, everybody moves in their own way at their own pace, and you’re right where you need to be at this point in time. You’ll get where you’re going eventually. It just takes time and perseverance.

#2 You should go and love yourself (Yes, I’m a Belieber)

I know, this is the mantra that bloggers, yogis and Kombucha drinkers seem to be plastering all over social media – and writing on top of your extra hot, quadruple shot, soy milk, turmeric latte served in a hollowed out coconut husk. But before you skip this paragraph, without sounding like an hippy-dippy evangelist, it really is important for you to love yourself. Because if you don’t, why should anyone else?

The aim is to fill yourself up with love from the inside and then let it spill out to those who matter most. After all, you are stuck with yourself for the rest of your life, so you better start to enjoy your own company.

#3 Adventure before dementia

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Get out and travel while you’re young and have nothing holding you back. Don’t you want to one day reminisce about how you rode camel back through the Sahara; skinny dipped in the Adriatic Sea, and partied in Cancun while watching the sun come up with a vodka bucket in hand? You’re only on this earth for 50-60 good years before your back gives out and you start appreciating gardening shows, so see as much of this world before then.

Networking, making lifelong friends, gaining opportunities and having amazing experiences are vital for your wellbeing. Studies have shown how travel lowers stress levels, keeps you fit and healthy, and can make you better at your job. It can even help boost your immune system, so you can go on and treat yourself to that eighth Jaegar bomb at Hula Hula bar in Hvar.

#4 Don’t worry about what other people think of you

Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat can be potent platforms when you’re young. People portray themselves how they’d like to be perceived, however it can project a façade and can put a strain on anyone who has to constantly keep up the image they’ve created of themselves. But what for? To be accepted by society? To be liked by other social climbers?

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The average millennial worries so much about what their peers and acquaintances might think that they hold back from expressing their true selves. Time and time again I have seen this happen; I myself am criminal for this kind of behaviour. It’s not until you start being your weird, wonderful and beautiful self that nothing else seems to matter as much. You do you hunny, there’s only one you.

#5 Being independent will get you far in life, as will owning up to your mistakes and learning from them

You’d be surprised how many of my friends don’t know how to use a mop or how to turn their oven on. My friend, who can’t use an oven, invited me over for dinner the other night (trust me I was wary about this proposal). She put feta cheese in an attempted stir fry… and let’s just say the toilet was my best friend the following day. But honestly, independence is so vital for survival these days, whether it’s knowing how to care for yourself, being able to cook or even making your own informed decisions.

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The Raising Children Networks studies show that the teens brain continues to mature into the early twenties, particularly the decision-making part of the brain, which is still developing. When you claim independence and start making your own decisions, you are also held accountable for your own actions. When a fine for texting while driving shows up in the mail, you can’t exactly point your finger at your pet dog. Learn from your mistakes, you’ll make a lot of them in your twenties, and your parents won’t be there to pay you out of that fine.

The sooner you realise these things, the more you will succeed and lead a positive lifestyle. I’m only in my early twenties now and have already learnt so many crucial life-long lessons. Do everything with love, pursue a career in something you are passionate about and be kind. Always be kind!

P.S.

  • If you don’t bring your washing in when its over 35 degrees, it goes crispy
  • Home brand food products are still tasty as hell #budgetlife
  • No one cares as much as you think they do
  • There will always be another sunrise tomorrow
  • Stay weird

Sophie Ferguson is a freelance writer from Perth, WA. She has a passion for adventure, connecting with inspirational people and sharing their stories.