Things I STILL don't know how to do in my 20s (and that's OK)
In my early 20s, I found a wealth of information online and between the pages of my favorite magazines about all of the lessons I had to learn before I turned 30. I memorized all of the behaviors I would have to toss away and made mental notes of the things I would need to give up in order to become a successfully grown adult. By the time I reached my late 20s I had realized that even though I was fully aware of the lessons others had hammered into my head over the years, I was still nowhere near ready to give up my late night outings and I really wasn’t prepared to switch out my high tops for high heels. It was in that moment that I realized these “rules” were just too silly to actually follow.
We are told from the time we were born what to do and when to do it and at some point you kind of have to let go of others’ direction and forge your own path. I am about to enter the last year of my 20s and I am ready to admit that there is still a lovely pile of things I have yet to master — and I don’t feel one bit guilty about it.
How to really, honestly save money
I’m a gal who knows how to balance a budget and I take great pride in my monthly spreadsheets which help allocate my money in a responsible manner. I have also shown my bank that I can save a buck, but that doesn’t mean I don’t still indulge myself. I have yet to learn that sometimes I don’t always need another pair of shoes, but I am getting there … slowly. Nowadays I tend to treat shopping as a reward for an accomplishment or milestone. Life is all about personal limits and if you can tell the difference between treating yourself and splurging on a brand new car well then, you’re golden!
How to consistently get a healthy amount of sleep
What is sleep? If it’s something that is meant to keep you completely alert and refreshed the next day, then I may still be a few lessons behind. Sleep is important. I know this and I remind myself of that fact quite often, but sometimes certain events keep me from turning in at a decent hour. Like those times I am deeply committed to a really good book or that habit I have of not taking my eyes off of Netflix long enough to use the washroom, let alone, go to sleep. It’s all about sacrifices.
When to leave the party
Since the human race no longer considers the phone as a form of communication, the only real way for me to connect with my pals is to see their smiling faces in the flesh and sometimes that means hitting up dinner and drinks on a week night. Sometimes those drinks occur well into the night, but that’s only because we never talk on the phone so we have A LOT to catch up on when we see each other. At least that is what I tell myself when I (still) make the mistake of staying out late on a school night.
How to fall in love without getting hurt
Seriously, is there anything more difficult? I went through a couple of relationships terrified of getting hurt because naturally that is how vulnerable we all feel in the beginning. But then I found someone so wonderful that the potential of pain seemed to fade into the background. The reality of relationships is that there is always the chance of getting hurt, but I suppose that is the risk we all decide to take. I have learned to love without worrying about the future and instead focusing on the present because it’s definitely way more awesome.
When to trust my gut and take my own advice
By far the biggest message I have yet to receive is the ability to take my own advice. I actually spend a great deal of time dispensing my wisdom onto my younger friends and family and though I often want to pat myself on the back for my wise ways I am quickly brought back down to earth by the harsh reality that I have not taken the same advice I am dishing out. For a while I was really hard on myself for not knowing better, but I realized that our wisdom comes, in part, from the mistakes we’ve made. So even when I’m not “taking my own advice,” I’m letting myself make mistakes and—most importantly—learn from them. How else are you going to grow up?