Journal

20 Things to Do in Your 20s That Will Set You Up For Life

20 Things to Do in Your 20s That Will Set You Up For Life

It was my birthday this month and as I head perilously close to 40 (another huge milestone) I've started thinking about the past couple of decades. My 30s have been awesome, and my Mum always said her 30s were the best time of her life. But if I'm honest, I struggled a bit during my 20s. They were exhilarating, frustrating, challenging and ultimately, rewarding; but if I knew then what I know now, they would have been a lot more fun. I had felt immense pressure to start the perfect career, have a perfect relationship, have the coolest ‘stuff’, and be ‘cool’ in general. But, quite frankly, I had no idea what cool was and I tried way too hard to figure it out.

The best thing about ageing is that you learn to let go of that nonsense. I’ve now redefined my priorities and notion of success, I no longer hang out with people I think are douchebags, and people who think I’m a douchebag no longer hang out with me. I live slow and happy. But in many ways, I have my anxiety-ridden 20s to thank for this clarity. So, to round off my self indulgent nostalgia, I have put together a list of things you should do in your 20s that will lay the foundation for a happier life in the future. Enjoy. And for those readers over 30, please add your two-cents in the comments below. Lets all enjoy some self-indulgent nostalgia.

  1. Move out – I mean it. I don’t care how expensive rent is, or whether your parents ‘love’ having you home, you are now a grown up, you need to develop your own identity in your own space
  2. Learn to cook and master at least one complicated dish
  3. Redefine your style
  4. Fall in love
  5. Break up
  6. Fall in love
  7. Break up (get my drift? Nothing forces clarity about the kind of relationship you want than going through this process)
  8. Figure out what friends make you happy and only hang out with them
  9. Learn to manage your money. Don’t expect anyone to support you
  10. Have a huge amount of fun
  11. Get a job, but don’t be afraid of leaving it
  12. Meet people outside of your social circle
  13. Understand your place in the world. You are not a special unicorn. You’re a better person to work with and be around once you realise this
  14. Learn to meditate
  15. Travel overseas
  16. Do things that really scare you
  17. Start an art collection
  18. See your favourite band play live
  19. Wear sunscreen (and listen to this), and  
  20. Don’t stress about turning 30. The best years are yet to come.

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