I’ve read a few things recently that affirm I am not the only one feeling like, “Geeze, Louise! Being a young 20-something is kind of hard!” On top of figuring out how I am going to pay rent next month, while still attempting to have some sort of fashion sense and have fun…oh, and eat, I am just plain confused about whether or not the decisions I am making are right or not. It seems that in these moments, my life and my future are being crafted right before my eyes, but the road ahead is hazy; I can’t see much past that right now. Thus, as I make decisions, I almost feel like I am tossing a coin up in the air…and regardless of where it lands, just wishing for the best. There is no more of this, “in the moment the coin is in the air, you’ll know which one your heart wants you to choose.” Like, seriously, I literally don’t know.
And being 20-something on a daily basis feels a little like this…
In the middle of writing, I remembered I wanted a Camelbak water bottle…so, I took a break to Google the one I wanted, which then turned into me googling “cheapest Camelbaks ever,” because $25 for a water bottle is just ridiculous. And then I promptly gave up, because the cheapest ones ever are still $11…plus shipping. If that $25 was for Chipotle, I would be throwing my debit card at the cashier…and regretting it 15 minutes later as I contemplate how long it’ll take to work off at the gym. This is my 20-something life. Sound familiar? Even the little things seem hard.
And, as Taylor Swift once said, “we’re happy, free, confused, and lonely at the same time…it’s miserable and magical…OH YEAH.” Think what you want about Tay Tay, but the girl gets me. Because “now” really isn’t so bad, but anticipating the future and making truly life-changing decisions is very hard. In reality, it also feels like my whole life, and all of these wonderful things, are just past the tips of my fingers…as long as these decisions are the “right” ones.
Let me put it to you this way: I knew after middle school came high school and after high school came college and after college, I was going to graduate school. Those moves and decisions were important ones, but they felt less weighty to me. They felt natural. I was ready. This, right now, feels weird…straight up weird. But, I am told that’s “natural.” WHAT? Okay, end rant. So 20-something is weird, that has been established. Now, how do we DEAL?
In all honesty, I don’t’ have all the answers; I have some insight as I am living it right along with you. Truly, part of writing this was to put it out there to say that if you are feeling this way, you are not alone.
1. Seriously, you are not alone. Remember, you are one of literally thousands of others who are feeling somewhat like this. But also remember that social media does not depict the reality of someone’s life. So don’t compare, especially because we are all taking different paths with different timelines.
2. Embrace change the best you can. I know it’s hard, but this period of our lives is defined by the changes occurring: moving on, moving up, changing jobs, location, becoming an adult. The more you accept that these things are happening and will continue to happen, the more you will enjoy your life as it is all occurring.
3. Talk to older mentors, friends, and family members. I have found that not many people talk about their young twenties regularly. We often hear about college, marriage, and then babies. Perhaps we hear a story or two, maybe about a first job or promotion, but it seems like the years between 22 and 27 are forgotten. But when you talk to older people specifically, you’d be surprised by the insight you receive. They, too, have been through a terrible break up; they know what it’s like to be confused and lonely but also excited and liberated at the same time. And their advice means more than instagram quotes or this article because they know and care about you.
4. Remember: “This, too, shall pass.” Period.
Get Smart, Get Inspired
Whether you are 14, 19, 23 or a parent/mentor Join our mailing list (we only email 1x a week with something inspiring!) here!
What will they find when they Google you?
Would you like to create a positive online presence? Consider writing for us! Apply here!