When I started working in my teens, around 17 years old for part-time job, I always wonder what would my life be 10 years later. I’m sure everyone have thought about it and also excited to know what life has for you.
Truth to be told, life has changed in some areas 10 years later and even more so when you work till late twenties and finally hit the big 3. Yes, some welcome it with both hands while others dreaded it and started doing research on botox and stuff. For me, I looked back and thought about what I had achieved in my 20s and what do I want to do for my 30s. Few days ago I hit the big 3 and started reading articles of “Tips to give yourself when you are in your 30s”, that kind of articles where you self-check yourself.
So here’s my list of “Things you do or don’t do in your 20s.”
1. Save more. Cut down on unnecessary expenses.
This can mean impulsive shopping purchases such as that pair of shoes you may not like but die die want to buy because it is on sale. I am guilty of that when I was in my early 20s, ended up with tons of shoes which I would only wear a few pairs.
Spending on drinks after work. We have all been through the stage whereby we think it is cool to go to a pub after work and chill and lament about work etc. I think we have watched too much drama and movies. As you get older, you find yourself wanting to go home asap after work to get your much needed me-time or rest, or prefer to go cafes such as Starbucks. A cheaper and practical option I reckon. In fact, I can’t remember when was the last time I went to a pub now.
2. Spend time with people who deserves your attention. In that 365 days, 7 days per week. 24 hours per day.
There’s only so much time you have and it is difficult to maintain all friendships along the way. And change is the only constant. I find myself being more selective and steered away from negative people because it just drains your energy away. And when shit hits the roof, you will see who is really there for you. And when miracles happen, the same people are always happy for you.
3. Travel more.
I never ever understand why people like to travel in my teens. I perceived it as a waste of money, time and effort and rather spend it elsewhere. But after that particular time when I embarked on that solo trip, my perspectives had changed completely. Travelling gives you quality to think about things with a clear mind. Sometimes when we are too caught up with situations or people around us, our decisions and thought processes are often influenced by them.
Travelling also gives you something to look forward to and makes you appreciate the life you have. And you would find yourself ready for new goals after that break.
4. Pick up a hobby. Pursue your passion.
I don’t think a life full of work is going to help much and really makes life difficult to get by. Thinking back, I’m glad that I stepped into the dance studio one fine day and there was no turning back. There was something to look forward to everyday and dancing really makes me a happier person. Any sports or hobbies shall do the same. It is all about having some work-life balances to keep you a sane person. Being in your 20s also allows you to pursue your passion, since the only commitment you have is yourself.
5. Don’t compare with others
The start of 20s means getting into a ‘cool job’, mid-20s means you need to be in a relationship with someone, and late-20s means going to get hitched soon. And when gathering with friends, there will always be a competition to see who is doing well, who is earning how much, who is promoted, who is getting married and the list goes on.
We have this societal norm that we have to be conformed to – that we need to do and achieve certain things in life by a certain timeline. I think everyone is different and this doesn’t apply to all. Life is not about competition and conforming to societal norms. We decide how we lead our lives responsibly and most importantly, it should be a happy one.
It is the experiences you had that count at the end of the day, not what you have bought. At death bed, no one will regret not buying that LV bag or rolex watch. It is often the regrets of not doing something that you want or reminicising those great memories which are formed by experiences. It’s your choice to lead the life you want.
Bracing myself to look forward to my 30s journey and perhaps, I would write a blog entry when I hit my 40s!