Aaah, your 20s. What a wonderful time. Some of you may well be coming up to this glorious time in your life and others might be just on the way out of them.
For those coming, you’ve got so much to look forward to… Graduation, finding your first job, starting to settle down, people singing Taylor Swifts ’22’ to you on your 22nd birthday. It’s a fun time. But we want you to know that there are some things you could be doing in your 20s to set you up for the rest of your life. Go ahead and take a look.
1. Stop feeling bad about the past
“There are two kinds of people in this world”, Jayesh Lalwani writes, “People who live their lives looking back, and people who live their lives looking forward.” You can generally spot these people by their general ‘shoulda-woulda-coulda’ attitude. This kind of regret can prevent you from seeing opportunities, thus leaving you with more regret.
Journalist Kathryn Schulz tells us that “regret doesn’t remind us that we did badly – it reminds us that we know we can do better.” Applying this philosophy can change your outlook on you circumstances and help you to take more control of your life.
2. Write down your goals
For many students “what do you want to do after uni?” is a daunting question that arises all too often. In fact, for those in their later 20s, it too can be a difficult question to answer. Writing down clear goals or dreams helps you focus. A study of US college students showed that students who wrote down a path toward their goal were more likely to complete their education.
By writing down your goals, you bring them to the front of your mind. This can make it easier to make decisions that bring you closer to reaching them.
3. Let go of your ego
“Pride comes before a fall”. We’ve probably all heard that saying and it’s true. This doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate achievements or be proud of yourself. Learn the ‘art of doubting’. Be able to question yourself and ask “what if I’m wrong?” However, it’s a fine line between dropping your ego and losing confidence. Don’t forget to trust yourself and don’t be afraid of making a decision.
4. Take care of your health
This doesn’t mean you have to go to the gym everyday or start a strict diet. Taking care of your health can mean simply mean swapping a sugary snack for a banana or switching a fizzy drink for a fruit juice or water. Take little steps to keep active now because it will never be easier. The older you get, the harder it will get to go to the gym or lose that extra pound.
Don’t forget about your mental health. If you need any advice on mental health visit the Young Minds website.
5. Start saving
First car, buying a house, retirement… For some people, at least two of these can seem like quite a way off. However, don’t let that fool you. The sooner you start saving, the better. You might not think that £5 a month could amount to anything, but it really is a good start and a good habit to get into.
Even if you’re earning a very low amount, there are plenty of ways you can make your pay cheque or student loan go further. Check out the Money Saving Experts 40 money savings tips for young adults.
6. Learn to cook
Word of advice: You can’t make it through life living on takeaways. If you think you can then please thing go back to point four (thinking about your health) and five (start saving). It’s much cheaper and generally healthier to cook your own food. Learn three or four simple dishes that you can use to impress your friends, family or even a special someone.
Here are some basic (and some alternative) dishes that you could learn could to cook from Real Simple.
7. Make friends wherever you are
Moving to a new place can be really hard. Leaving family and friends can be emotional and trying to find new friends can be incredibly difficult. However, finding new friends is really important to your mental health. If you have a hobby or interest, try joining a group that does that activity. If you’re just interested in meeting new people regardless of interests, try using the website Meet Up.
Meet Up allows users to create groups based on location or mutual interests and then to schedule events for it’s members. It’s completely free to join and you might be surprised by how many like-minded people there are.
8. Did we miss anything?
If there’s anything you think we missed then leave a comment below!