I know I am only 22 this year. I am not old, not yet – I would be considered relatively old in teenagers’ eyes though but what do they know? Actually, a lot. Having lived for 2 dozen years, you start to learn that some things are just re-enactments in different settings. As children, we were unencumbered by adult problems slash money problems – what mattered was who sat on the swing or how many times we could go on the slide. Entering the adult world, we are pressed with insurance policies, mortgages, student loans and annoying bills that seem endless. The stamp Responsibilities is given to us – we have full control over our lives now and we can eat candies and chocolate deep into the night.
I believe that 20s is a crucial time in our lives. This is the decade where habits will be continually formed, dreams are made and erased and remade better (hopefully). Certain relationships get broken or renewed – some of us will step into marriagehood, others might choose a different path depending on the choices we make. Also, the way we spend our money and take care of our well-being will define us in later years, now still unseen, untouchable, unimportant.
Judge less – everyone is trying their best to live the life they want. The person sitting right next to you in the bus? Yes, he might smell bad but he might have been working for 12 hours straight in a construction site without you knowing. So, be less obnoxious and mind your own business.
Spend wisely and within your means. Understand the value of a product, not the value the product will give you. If you are going to act as if your whole fortune is worth that Louis Vuitton bag you just bought, save it. Use something closer to your standard.
Learn something new every once in a while. If you think you are good enough at something, you probably aren’t. Nobody can ever be good enough at something; learning and self-improvement should be a constant pursuit in our lifetime.
Never stop reading and absorbing new information. You don’t like to read? It’s fine. There’re an abundance of infographics around the Internet these days. Keep yourself up to date. Know what’s happening in current affairs – otherwise, you will be perceived as sloppy and worse, lazy.
Listen more. Talk less. People talk too much sometimes. It’s fine if you need to pour your heart out to your best girlfriend or confidante, but by repeating that same story to 6 different people aren’t going to change anything. Be proactive instead of protalking.
Stand out, be different. This means helping the old grandmother crossing the road when everyone is rushing by and choosing to sleep at 9pm even when all your friends are out partying – I am not talking about big steps that will make you distinctive in society. It is the littlest things that add up to be different in the end.
Create your own priorities and cater to them. Everyone’s priorities are different and well, that should be the way. Find your own living style and respect it.
Listen to yourself more. You will come to realise that we are each our own person – which means we are essentially selfis. No one really cares about you but yourself (save your parents) so why do you let yourself be put down by some asshole who will be rendered insignificant in the years to come?
Dream big. And make it happen. This is top priority. Too many times have I heard people telling me that I will never make it as a writer – that the market is ripe with talented people and the pay is shit. Well, who am I subscribing to anyways? This is my life, this is how I want to live it – so be sure of what you want and go for it. Nobody can tell you otherwise except yourself.
Pamper yourself and your loved ones. The endless times where they lent you their shoulders? Show them you care, and that you appreciate them. Also, a good facial and massage once in a while doesn’t hurt your pocket too much. Your mental well-being is a delicate thing – bags, on the other hand, are not.
Avoid the sun when you can – or be prepared to witness early lines on your face.
Keep toxic relationships in the dumpster. This is pretty self-explanatory.
You should not feel sorry for what you have. People have to deal with this in their own ways; if they continue to feel inferior, the problem is in their court, not yours.
The rest becomes irrelevant.