Things I Learned in My 20’s…

There is so much my twenties has taught me already. I’ll be 29 in a few months, and I’ve been reflecting on my life a lot recently, and thought it might be useful to share a few things I’ve been mulling over and a few things I know have mad a difference…

  1. How to cope with others having a different opinion – For a long time this was really hard for me. I grew up quite an obnoxious, know-it-all teen/early twenties. I learned the hard way that this is not the way to get on in life and other people’s opinions have as much merit as my own.
  2. I still don’t know it all – Kind of related to the point above, I used to think I knew everything about anything. I didn’t, and I still don’t. In fact, I never will!
  3. About the bigger picture; kids, marriage etc – I was so unsure where I stood with ‘adult stuff’ when I was in my teens. To be completely honest, I still don’t have a definite plan. But right now I’m happily married with the prospect of kids in the future. Who knows? I’m glad I’ve learned how to go to the flow a little more now…
  4. How not to freak out about death – Anyone who has watched my Health Anxiety videos on my YouTube channel will already know the issues I’ve had with illness, dying and anxiety. After a murder in my family in 2014, I was hit hard with the concept of my own life and mortality. I was transfixed on it and I was very depressed. Luckily, I began to find comfort in the concept of death’s inevitability. It happens to all of us, and we have no control over death. All we can do is cherish life and appreciate living every day we have to the fullest.
  5. Keeping friends is a lot harder the older you get – being at school, college, university etc, you;re always surrounded by your friends. Looking back, this was amazing! But as I get older I realise it’s hard not to let life get in the way. Making a conscious effort to keep up with friends really makes me so happy though.
  6. To see grey, instead of black & white – I think when I was younger I adapted, without question, to the opinions of those around me. Media, family & Friends were the main influences for my opinions with little room for negotiation! As I’ve grown up in my 20’s, I’ve really tried to challenge my own opinions and thoughts. It has opened up my mind and my life to so many beautiful things, places and people. I can only apologise to anyone who was a victim of my black and white opinions when I was younger.
  7. The importance of taking care of my skin – This one is actually just something I’ve really come to appreciate in the last year. At 28, I’ve had my first experience with ‘wrinkles’ *shudder*. I’m really fair skinned with lots of facial & limb freckles, so it’s massively important for me to pay more attention now. I make sure to cleanse, tone and moisturise (most) nights – and I can see a massive difference already! A side note, I’m not adverse to some Botox if it’s needed in my 30’s… 😉
  8. How much family matters – Friends are so important, but family become more of a life-crutch for me every day. I think I’ll appreciate my parents even more if I become a parent myself, but lets not get ahead of ourselves!
  9. That you never truly know what you ‘wanna do when you grow up’ – So, so true. In fact for me the older I get, the less clear I become! I currently work a pretty standard office job. It’s not ‘me’. I crave creativity in my life everyday, and office work is the exact opposite! However, as they say, that’s life. If I want to change it, I have to work hard to achieve something I’m happy with as a career. I’m so appreciative though that the job I have at the moment is something I like doing when I’m there, and the people I work with are awesome. And it funds my creativity!
  10. How to compromise – My Dad is my hero. He has taught me how to be a compassionate and generous human being. But, being such a big influence in my life, he has taught me some of his really bad habits – ha! He’s so stubborn, hot-headed and non-compromising in a lot of situations and I’ve taken on these traits growing up. It’s been a running joke in my family my whole life that I am my Dad in a wig. So, when I moved out of my parents home I began to really see the effect that being this closed off, stubborn, obnoxious character was having on my life. I was losing friends, losing good opportunities, loosing my temper with littlest things. I decided that I had to change. I think I’m still the same compassionate, loving person my Dad has always encouraged me to be, but I like to think I have begun to understand the importance of understanding. Marriage also hits you with a massive life-lesson in compromise…!
  11. How to love myself & others – I think this nicely continues from the previous point. Behind my cold, shut-off character of my teens and early 20’s, I was internally so, so self deprecating. I have never been happy with ‘me’; whether that’s my personality, my body, my face, my lazy eye. I have septo-optic dyspepsia which has resulted in really poor vision in my left eye, and so is now quite lazy and wandering and that has always been a massive hang-up of mine. But over the last couple of years (mainly since meeting my wonderful husband), I have learned to give less value and merit to my exterior. I now really try to concentrate on my personality and my heart, and seeing the beauty of other people’s personality. It’s quite bizarre really; for me, as soon as I made an effort to love others more, I began to love myself more. I appreciate myself and everyone around me a little more each day. We’re all in the same boat; we’re all sailing through life without a clear idea of the best way to steer…

I hope sharing these life-lessons from my 20’s was helpful to at least one person. I’d love to know some of the life lessons you’ve learned so far, so feel free to drop them in the comments below!