I do not ascribe to notions proclaiming that your 20s are for having fun or for learning lessons. This is a sure fit way to end up broke and clueless. As a twenty-something, you’ll often come across older adults who share comments such as, “I wish I had done/known that when I was your age,” or “You have all the time in the world to make your money”. You should listen. Your twenties are for self-development. By the age of twenty-five you should have- at the very least- some clue as to the kind of person you absolutely don’t want to be. This is your me-time, and for most of us the very last of our me-time. The way in which we live our lives now has a rippling effect on the next few decades. Those who spend these years making informed decisions are sure to spend the next few decades a lot better off.
Time is perhaps the most important resource you’ll ever have. I know this, and that’s why I go to lengths to make sure that I take advantage of it.
Too often we get caught in the identities of others. Too often we get caught in the image of the ideal twenty-something who, like us, feels that there is always something else to do, money to spend, somewhere to go, energy to expel. We share each other’s big dreams until we forget how to feel satisfied. We spin webs of WANT so wide and intricate that we end up suspended in the middle, paralyzed with the inability to recall who we were before we became so entangled in the lives of the great ‘others’.
Our social media has become littered with the ideal life we should be living and what we should be doing in our twenties. I believe that if it doesn’t support your health, happiness or relationships it’s not essential. Billions of humans have lived happily and died at peace without having done any of the things that twenty somethings are being told we need to do (like get rich before 30, for example).
Note that your friends’ Snapchat and Instagram (If not Facebook) accounts comprise the most interesting aspects of their lives and it’s no surprise that many of us get tricked into feeling that we are doing our twenties wrong. You see a write-up about one friend who has launched a successful tech startup ( like me 😉 )and a post by another who has just started dating a ‘rich’ guy, and somehow you feel jealous of both of them. How is that even possible? We use it to make our own existences look glamorous, to justify our presence and declare our worth. With many of us having 500-2000+ contacts on our combined social media accounts, it’s easy to understand how we can quickly be deceived into thinking that everybody is doing something awesome all the time, and to judge ourselves for not being as awesome as everybody else.
Social media isn’t real! For example, I read most nights and I thoroughly enjoy it, but I don’t set my profile picture to a picture of me reading. Instead I go paintballing, or bungee jumping one time and use a picture of one of those, because I want people to think that I’m that type of person? And I contribute one more rumor to the giant lie of the ideal twenty-something.
What I’m saying is this: do what makes you happy, and forget everybody else. Seriously. Who cares what your doing?
Sometimes, you need to forget about everybody else, put yourself on mute and just listen, your mind will speak to you. Mute the noise and listen to your mind. If your mind tells you you would make a great entrepreneur, start a business, review businesses, learn from businesses , find friends and a partner who are running businesses. If your mind tells you fitness, go to the gym. Find fit friends and get more fit together. Take pictures of your shredded biceps and share them with the world.
Don’t you dare feel obligated to do any of those things your friends are doing. Because you are you and they are them. The only concern you should have with their lives is that they are happy with what they are doing. Your twenties are a time to find your own mountains, not to slip and scuttle through the debris of everybody else’s.
Do what makes you happy, and forget everybody else.
So what are your twenties for? Stay Tuned…