This week I turned 25! I can’t lie 24 was the best year to date but the years before that were not so easy and twenty-three possibly the hardest. Your early twenties are about discovery the good, bad and ugly -but mostly the FABULOUS! These are the lessons I learnt whilst in my ‘early twenties’ and I wanted to share.
Not everyone has the personality to travel alone, but it teaches you invaluable lessons about yourself and others. Be smart about it but don’t be structured – go with flow.
a) You can be anyone you want to be BUT beware this is confronting. It asks the question; who do I want to be, then, who am I (dangerous stuff huh?!) which then triggers a process of deep thinking about your values, beliefs and priorities. Through this process reflect on your family values, friendships, past experiences; good and bad, and take the (excuse the cliche) journey to define who you are in this world.
b) I’m not going to lie there are times when you’ll be bored out of your brain, lonely, wishing you had never gone solo, BUT (fear not!) you have YOU!? Learn the value of your own company and not be dependent on others for approval or worth. LOVE your own company because you’re awesome
2. Live away from home
Learning the value of ‘keeping house’ is crucial. budgeting, cleaning, cooking. You grow to respect the job of your parents when you’ve had a tough day at uni (all of two contact hours) and have to come home to cook your own dinner (for one not six) and then do all the dishes.
3. Spend time with your parents
As you get older (you’re not old, but) you realize that your parents are pretty cool people and they can even be your friend. They have been where you are now, they have made mistakes and have stories to share. Learn from them, listen to them, laugh with them.. (I laughed at mine most of the time because they’re hilarious) and respect the sacrifices they have made for you.
4. Look after your skin
There is nothing healthy about a tan! Especially not when you’ve got leather skin at 40 wishing you just put that additional layer of sunscreen on. Have a daily skin care regime, this creates structure in at least one area of your life and nothing feels better than going to bed with a freshly cleansed face (it’s the small things, right?! Plus I’ve started noticing claw feet eyes in most of my photos so anti-ageing cream it is from now on!)
5. Invest in others and experiences
Invest your time in the people and activities that challenge and encourage you to think beyond your world. Embrace new cultures, world views, LIFE and don’t let money or a secure job deter you from living a little.
6.Have phone free days
We are connected ALL the time. Leave you phone at home sometimes and it is then you’ll be enlightened by your surroundings and notice the ‘new’ cafe on your street because you’re not stalking the girl, that liked your current crush’s photos, whilst walking to the train.
7.When you’re with people BE present
There is nothing that bugs me more than when I’m out for coffee with someone, they get a text message or phone call and reply or answer whilst mid conversation. Heads up people – IT”S RUDE! and should never be accepted unless you’ve given pre-warning that coffee may be interrupted.. If you’re a person constantly distracted by your phone, perhaps when you’re going out adhere to number 6 and realise the world will not fall apart if you don’t answer or reply straight away.
8.Bring out the hippie and put away the lens
NEWS FLASH – You live in a crazy beautiful world, take the time to sit, breath in and out and listen to yourself breathe, look at the trees, feel the breeze, listen to the ocean and realise how incredible this earth really is. And for that moment, capture it in your MIND. That moment is your’s – no one else’s. Treasure it. (…and hippie scpeel complete)
9.Embrace the single life
Your early 20’s are about discovery, traveling, meeting new people, culling old ones, and learning about who you are – once you’ve learnt who you are as an individual, go nuts!
10. Be yourself 100% of the time
Don’t waste time trying to be someone else, or feeling like you can’t completely be who you are (if you are that person, adhere to number 1. No body likes a fake and life is too short to hide who you are, be honest to yourself, love yourself and people will love you.
There are so many more; learn another language, don’t get caught up in ‘txt’ talk (use proper grammar (you’re – your, there- they’re), have makeup free days, learn to cook, the list goes on! The most important thing is to get away from the screen and the norm ; everyday seek, everyday discover, everyday learn!