Entering a New Decade: 6 Lessons From My Twenties
Today I turn 30. THIR-TY!
Which is exciting. And daunting.
All things considered, I feel pretty okay about getting older.
Frankly, I’m at a pivotal point in my life where I’m focused on building the empire I have in my heart. Never before have I been so dead set on accomplishing my goals & moving closer to something that I truly want.
That being said, I definitely goofed off quite a bit in my twenties - which I don’t regret - but I look back on & sometimes wonder… WTF?!
So as I turn the page on this next decade, I’ve been reflecting on what I want to take with me from my twenties & what I’m ready to leave behind. Along the way I’ve determined some lessons that will stay with me as I move forward.
I want to share them with you in hopes that they’ll shed some light on lessons you may still have to learn. And remember, we’ve all got our places of growth.
Six Lessons I’ve Learned from my Twenties:
Lesson One: Validation does not come from others.
It doesn’t take a family member, a spouse or a role model to tell you you’re good enough. Your worth is not dependent on someone else’s opinion.
To be successful, I don’t need anyone else’s validation but my own.
My sense of self, worth & value is dictated by my perspective or opinion alone. Just like when you came into this world, you have nothing to prove. And as soon as you can recognize that, you can get on with the rest of your life & stop worrying about what others think of you.
Lesson Two: Perfectionism is a subtle disease.
So first of all, there’s the idea of being perfect (as good as it is possible to be) & there’s actually being perfect (complete).
The idea of being perfect will destroy you. Perfection as it's being defined is free from faults or defects. In this regard, nothing is perfect & so you’ll always feel like there’s something wrong with you. Not so cool.
When you can recognize that perfect is subjective, meaning that you are perfect right now because you choose to see yourself as whole, complete & enough, then you can let go of the judgment. Perfectionism will steal your ability to take action & make you judge or criticize the work you do.
I am imperfectly perfect & that I can get on with.
Lesson Three: Your life is a reflection of your priorities.
Anything you spend time doing is a priority. Where you are & what you do now are a reflection of those priorities. Your wants & desires should be determined by you alone, releasing the need to please others or meet some idealistic standard of life.
Guess what - if you wanted to learn the language you would, if you wanted to lose the weight you would, if you wanted to finally take that trip or vacation you would. It’s where you place your priorities that manifest the life you’re leading right now.
This is a harsh realization I’ve had to come to terms with, that not all my idealistic life goals are actually a priority for me. And that’s okay. Learning what does take precedence in my life, meeting my real priorities, wants & needs has meant transforming the goals I work towards over the years.
Lesson Four: Stop playing the victim of your life.
You are literally the leading lady of your movie. The conductor of your symphony. The head honcho. The boss. The CEO.
You are in control of your life.
Your life centers around you & deciding otherwise is also completely up to you. You are not a victim of circumstance, you are the pilot of the aircraft experience you’re flying. Deciding you are ready to stand up for the life you want will make all the difference when you realize that life is not happening to you, you are creating your life with thoughts, words, actions & choices.
Lesson Five: Strike a balance between right now & until then.
It’s important to give yourself grace when it comes to satisfaction. As someone who has dedicated a lot of time investing in “some day” thoughts, I reflect back on what if I had taken the opportunity when it was presented without worrying so much about the outcome.
We’ve got to strike a balance between instant gratification & long term reward. Both are equally as crucial to leading a satisfied life. Live your life now for enjoyment, but with the future in mind.
Setting up healthy habits will be the best investment you can make in your future success physically, mentally & financially. But sometimes that means forgoing the instant gratification of “I want it now.” This one I still struggle with, but appeasing our right-now self while still planning for our future self I think is crucial to leading a balanced life.
Lesson Six: Stop worrying.
Really. This is simple, but one of the most challenging. Worry clouds judgment, increases anxiety & is pretty much pointless.
Worry accomplishes nothing & gets you nowhere. It doesn’t solve problems, provide uplifting thoughts or make you take action. Let go of the need to worry over every decision you make. Order the dessert & just enjoy it.
When something happens you can navigate the emotions that come up, but worrying about an outcome will only take up brain space & lead you to make ill-advised decisions.
There you have it… six of the lessons I’ve learned from my twenties that I’m mostly starting to put into action now. I don’t regret any aspect of my life, but I certainly do know I can continue to improve it with these lessons learned along the way.
So cheers to a new decade! Cheers to a life well-lived!
And cheers to being enough just as you are!
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