Your twenties is one of the most exciting phases of your life!
You know why?
Because you finished college and earned your degree, got your first job and it probably pays super well. Most of us also move out and start living on our own in our twenties. This automatically gives us a great sense of accomplishment and independence. However, there are some harsh realities that we have to face.
So, from my experience here are the 9 things you should stay warned about:
1. Your body is not unassailable
All of us have a scar from when we fell off the slide on the playground, but those scars healed pretty quickly. That will not happen in your 20s. Even a cold tends to last longer as you grow older. I have never had allergies all my life but I moved three months ago and developed a carpet allergy. Despite medication, I am sneezing all the time.
So be more conscious and careful!
2. Your metabolism will change
Yes, we all get through school and college eating Maggie, Chai, Samosa and junk in the cafeteria. That won’t work anymore. Your metabolism is slower, which means your body takes longer to turn food into energy and will store more fat. So start eating healthy and exercise. I have gone without meals, pulled all nighters and been able to function efficiently in my teens but now I can’t go a week without exercising and eating healthy.
If you are not physically fit you will never get any work done.
3. Money will not solve all your problems
Your early 20’s is when you get your first job and taste at earning for yourself. If you graduated from a good college with decent grades you probably have a job that pays you a fat salary with many perks. That is not enough. Real problems cannot be solved with money.
Emotions, friendship and health all go beyond it.
I spent the last few months without an income. I didn’t have the most fancy experiences but I have learnt to value the more important aspects of life like trust, loyalty, family and building strong relationships.
4. Your friends’ circle will shrink
I mean it. It will shrink drastically. Most of us have large groups of friends. Yes, we know that friend’s friend’s cousin and we all chill out together on weekends. No more of that.
You will lose touch with people and life will move on. Once you start working and living on your own there is no time to keep texting, no energy to grab a beer after work and probably insufficient funds to travel to exotic destinations. What you will have is an immediate friends circle. You will probably see them once or twice a week, enjoy their company and know that you will always fall back on them.
In my case, after I moved out of home there are only a handful of people I have managed to stay in touch with, but I know they are the ones I can count on for life.
5. No concept of free time
You know how you ask people, “What do you do in your free time?” That question is not valid in your twenties.
So make sure to seize whatever little time you have to do something interesting. There is not a lot of free time but no matter how old you are, you need to break the monotony and keep learning something different. I currently don’t have a 9-5 job, I have an internship that requires me to work only 2 days a week and yet I don’t seem to have much time.
I ensure to make time for pursuing a hobby and getting out to experience new things.
6. You might not love what you do
Many times you want to do something different professionally. You want to work in fashion, or be an entrepreneur or work with an NGO but you end up with a slightly monotonous corporate job that has you coding all day. If you do end up with your dream job you probably hate your work environment, co-workers or your boss. Basically you can’t have it all on your first few jobs.
It is okay, take what you get and work with it to make your dreams come true. It gives you a chance to learn more about people and relationships. I wanted to work in an agency and be a digital media manager, but, I currently work as a content curator for a startup.
What I do is pretty close to what I want and I hope I can find my way back into an agency but until then I have learnt to love what I do, it helps me do it well.
7. Your priorities will change
Don’t fight it, just embrace it when it happens. You will start realizing your family is your top priority; they are the ones who have your back no matter what. Your interest will change, you will watch news and track the stock market, you will start thinking about the future and making smart investments vs shopping or blowing all your savings on a world tour. This is fine.
Lately, I have started to spend more wisely and think about saving more, not only for a rainy day but to invest in business, probably buy my first car etc.
8. Life can get monotonous
This is bound to happen. You will wake up, exercise, go to work, bring work home at the end of the day, and hit the bed exhausted and do it all over again. This will work if you have a good routine. The twenties is actually monotonous. You figure out what kind of food you prefer, what kind of workouts help, when you like to wake up etc.
It is upto you to spice things up and break the monotony. I ensure to try something new once a month like pursue a new hobby, cook something extraordinary, try new cuisines etc.
9. You are responsible for yourself
I have literally saved the harshest one for the end. Your health, your money, your belongings are all your responsibility. Meals won’t cook on their own; taxes won’t pay itself. You have to do it. Learn to do your chores, learn to live happily. Reality hit me that I was an adult and responsible for myself when I ended up coming home after a long day, fixing a broken bulb and cooking myself a healthy meal.
Being an adult and finding your way is not the easiest thing but I assure you that your 20’s won’t come back.
I know it seems hard but despite all of these realities the 20s will be your most fun and formative years. So, LIVE IT UP guys!