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20 things I’ve learnt in my 20s

So you never guess what next week is. My birthday. I am saying goodbye to my 20s and hello to my 30s. Oh my goodness, Please hold a second whilst I have a Rachel Green moment and refuse to turn the big 30. (that’s a little bit allowed right?)

In the same breath, I am really excited to be doing this post! because it is quite exciting as well to be reflecting on the whole of my 20s in general.

colorful pastel balloons
Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on Pexels.com

My 20’s. Oh god, where do I start?

I’ve experienced a lot in the past 10 years when I actually think about it. I guess you don’t notice how much has really happened and changed until you reflect on a bigger scale like this.

I’ve had a variety of jobs, adventures, friendships, and positive experiences. As well of course my fair share of life dramas, masses of hospital trips and tears. Ive fallen in love, gotten engaged, started my own business, weve moved into our own home and planning so many more adventures to come. Yay.

So what have I actually learnt in my 20’s?

Life is way too short.

Life is about living, and we can’t do that unless we’re actually making the effort to live our lives. Do what we want to do in life, set goals, make adventures and create memories.

Instead of waiting till tomorrow, getting on with life and enjoying every minute is exactly the most important thing. Take all the opportunities to make memories and have adventures that you possibly can because no one really knows how much time we actually have to live.

Losing dad has taught me this the most.

Be grateful and appreciate what you have.

If we spend all our time looking for the next thing in life, then we won’t appreciate what we already have. Life is so much more when you appreciate what you have already. Being grateful for who we have in our lives now, appreciating the time we have with them and the feelings and memories they share with us.

Not just people we need to be grateful for, the things we already have. So many of us spend too much time worrying about our next phone, or the clothes in our wardrobe. The latest fashions and trends just take away from the things we already own.

Mistakes happen. But we learn from them.

Sometimes we make the wrong choices in life. Things happen that we didn’t mean to happen, and sometimes we make mistakes.

Mistakes suck, but as humans, it’s only natural that we make a bunch of mistakes in life. I have learnt that it’s OK to make mistakes, as long as we learn from the mistakes that we have made. Learning to accept that we have made a mistake is one thing, but the biggest lesson is of course is the fact we learn from the mistakes we’ve made and how to not make them again.

There is no such thing as normal.

Normal just doesn’t exist.

And if there is such thing as normal. Why would we wanna bore ourselves by being normal?

I admit that I used to say all the time ‘I just want normal’ but the more challenges I have faced, and things that I have experienced, I’ve realised myself, normal just isn’t a thing. My life has been crazy, weird, emotional, dramatic and so much more so far, far from any normal. (if there is one).

Being yourself is the best thing you can do in your life. Everybody is different and special in their own way. No one is the same. People can relate and have similarities but no life will ever be identical.

As much as it’s easy to wish for normal sometimes. It’s about learning what your normal is and embracing your differences and the situations you face.

Everything happens for a reason.

I used to get so annoyed at this one. I still do. Like it doesn’t make sense for certain things to have happened. Mum and dad have always said this though. My dad used to say it the most. Like a constant reminder whenever anything rubbish happened.
In fairness, it is not really what you want to hear when you are upset about something, like getting fired from a job.

We’ve come so far 💕

It really was something I learned when Emma and I started seeing each other. We knew each other before and we were in a situation controlled by someone else. (yep, The love triangle) The truth is if we hadn’t gone through the crap we did and met that person, we wouldn’t have found the love for each other that we did. So if that’s not a reason for something bad happening I do not know what is. We’ve been through so much together, and I wouldn’t change it for the world! I found my soulmate.

It’s important to do what makes you happy.

Why do we spend so much time sticking with things that aren’t making us happy? I have been a culprit of doing this so many times. In the past few years, I really have learnt to fill life with things that make us happy. For example Disney. Both I and Emma are Disney obsessed, We have so much Disney in our home, but that’s what makes us happy. From our latest obsession of collecting Disney Funko Pops to our massive amount of Disney bedding.

It pretty much comes down to fuck what everyone else thinks, I’m doing this because it makes me happy.

You cannot make everyone happy.

Speaking of happiness…

In a perfect world, everybody would be happy all of the time, with no issues, no drama, just positive attitudes and happy vibes all around. However, I think a lot of us can agree that making everyone happy is sometimes a bit too much of a challenge.

Learning to accept that not all situations can mean keeping everyone happy is a pretty big one.

I think it is a learning curve though. like I said before, In an ideal world we could keep everyone happy all the time, but over the years I have learnt that this isn’t always possible!

I doubt ill give up trying though.

Put yourself out there once in a while.

If I have learnt anything in my 20’s it’s to say yes to new opportunities whenever possible.

Not every opportunity will work out for the best. However by saying yes to something different you are potentially opening up doors for new things to be welcomed into your life.

I’m not going to lie. I am incredibly shy. My confidence isn’t always great, either. One thing my 20s has shown me is that if you don’t put yourself out of your comfort zone, you won’t get any closer to where you want to be. Like when I recently did my first craft fair, before I had I was making so many excuses. By grabbing the opportunity and actually putting myself out there. It completely changed how I was doing things and pushed me to start getting further.

when I turned 20, I randomly decided to apply for an outdoor activity centre to work. I spent 2 seasons, living away from home and certainly out of my comfort zone. It’s one of the best things I have ever done.

Not everyone knows what they want to do when they grow up!

I actually feel like this is a pretty important one.

If you asked me even now what I wanna do when I grow up, I would still say I don’t really know. Firstly because I would rather be like peter pan, who never grows up but in seriousness, who actually knows what’s going to happen in 10 years time? yet alone longer.

When it comes to career, mine has been a jumble! I’ve been a cashier, an outdoor activity instructor, a nursery practitioner, a door supervisor, a receptionist and a civil servant before my health changed things, and left me running my own business. I’ve loved and hated all the jobs I have had. One thing is for sure, I have never really had a career plan.

Some people are fortunate enough to know what they want to do and spend their whole lives working towards their plan. Not everyone knows though, and the biggest lesson I have learnt from many many jobs is, it is OK to not have a plan.

If you really want to achieve something, go for it.

I absolutely love goals. Setting them, planning things, getting organised. All of it.

I have learnt over the last few years that if you set your mind to something, and you work towards it, no matter what it is. You can achieve anything. It’s learning to erase the word ‘can’t’ from your vocabulary and changing it to, I may not have done it this time, but I will achieve it when I am ready.

Do things that scare you once in a while.

A couple of years ago I randomly decided I was going to abseil down the spinnaker tower in Portsmouth to raise money for Autism. I don’t know why I randomly decided to do that, I’ve never particularly liked heights, but I’ll never turn down something that uses a bit of adrenaline.

I’m not going to lie to you. I laughed hysterically the whole way down and talked to myself entirely (I’m so relieved my mum didn’t purchase the video)

And somehow, even though I didn’t like it at first, I was working at heights as an outdoor activity instructor.

Talking, helps.

I’ve struggled with my mental health from time to time for years.

Anxiety, depression and PTSD.

I have learnt over time that I need to open up, and I shouldn’t bottle everything up. I find it too easy to keep things to myself at times. I do not like the idea of burdening my issues on other people. Especially when everyone has their own things to deal with. Which Is ironic as I would happily listen to anyone else who needs to let things off their chest.

I find talk therapy a challenge at times, as I am shy in nature! but since I’ve been opening up more, it’s really been helping. So it is true what they say! talking helps.

Kindness goes a long way.

Kindness really does go a long way in this world.

Even the smallest of actions could make a difference to someone. I was always taught to lead by example, and consider how I would feel if I needed help or kindness. I bear this in mind all of the time. I do what I can for others without expecting anything in return and it taught me so much that if I can help someone my kindness can have a wonderful impact.

Cutting toxic people out of your life is ok.

This is the hardest lesson to learn, or well, I definitely found it the hardest to learn. Honestly, it took me years to be able to cut the most toxic person out of my life. However, once I finally managed to do this, the end result was happiness.

Don’t stay in a toxic relationship. whether it is a friendship or romantic relationship. It is absolutely fine to cut a toxic person out of your life, for your own mental well-being.

Love yourself.

Learning to love yourself is a lesson worth learning, one that we continue to learn daily.
the ability to be able to look in the mirror and say ‘’I love this person that is staring back at me”. OK, It’s not always easy but reminding yourself that you love yourself can improve your mindset.

when you stop caring what others think, you gain freedom to be yourself.

When you stop caring about the negative opinions of others it really does improve your mindset.

It doesn’t help that social media has had a massive impact on us when it comes to what others are thinking of us. Sad but true.

Its important you listen to what your body is telling you.

I’m so stubborn at times. I have always been a bit stubborn. I think because I am so often poorly, it makes me even more determined to get on with things, despite what my body is doing.

I have learnt the hard way, that if we ignore our bodies signals to slow down, it can make us ill mentally and physically.

It’s ok to ask for help.

It could be asking for physical help or even asking for the knowledge of someone else, either way, asking for help is ok.

And this is coming from someone who can be extremely stubborn!

asking for help doesn’t show weakness but the ability to work as a team and show acceptance,n to others input. Not everything in life needs to be done alone.

Invest in yourself.

Investing In yourself doesn’t necessarily mean spending money on yourself, although retail therapy is always a win in my eyes.

Investing in yourself is one of the most important things I have learnt, be it time in learning, self-care, or the occasional spend up.

One thing my dad always would say is, don’t skimp on cheap shoes. Your feet are an important feature, they carry you around all day, so why wouldn’t you wear decent shoes. (He would moan when I used to love a £2.50 pair of plimsolls from Primarni!)

Being an adult sucks and no one really wants to grow up.

There I said it. At times being an adult sucks.

Tell me I am wrong. I bet you cant?

Going from my 20s to my 30s, I already can say I would have loved to embrace just a few more years being 20 something, but you can’t slow down time, unfortunately.

I love to say how I would rather be in ‘Disneyland‘ right now, and cant we run away there? In fact, I say it all the bloody time. It’s true that when you are younger you can’t wait to grow up, but when you actually realise the reality of what being an adult is actually like, you suddenly stop wanting to grow up and be a kid again.

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