Advice from 30+ to people in their 20s
Updated: May 17, 2020
I saw a post one of my Facebook friends had posted, asking for advice! It was beautiful and intriguing to see the responses. So I decided to do my own post, seeking advice of people 30 years or older to people in their 20s. This is what they said.
1. Invest in your future.
Whether it is investing in your retirement, saving money for a house, paying off debt, or building your credit, starting any and all of these things is a good idea. It may seem REALLY far away - but starting to add to a retirement fund early, will be a huge advantage down the road! Even if it is just a little, it's worth it, and I promise you won't even miss it.
Likewise, working to building your credit by using a card to pay a simple bill every month, can build your credit and make it easier for you to do things like buying a house, a car, or receiving a loan. It may seem like conflicting advice to say "build credit" and "pay off debt" in the same tip, but let me tell you why it is not. You can build credit without racking up a ton of debt! Start with only allowing one small monthly bill (maybe like gas for your car) and make sure you pay it off on time, every month!
"Don’t ever quit on yourself or each other. No matter what it is, it too shall soon pass. You have to work for what you want and don’t ever quit."
Paying off debt slowly is important. Even when you are young, and your loans are in deferment, try to chip away at it slowly. A lot of people recommended taking classes or researching tips on how to do these things! I am no expert, so I would recommend that too! Try using an app like Mint or NerdWallet to learn to budget. Your bank may even have some tools on their site that can help!
2. Take care of your body.
"Use face lotion." Yes, your skin is perfect now, but it won't always be. Healthy skin when you are older, starts when you are younger. Develop a good face regimen. Do your research. There are some inexpensive ways to start this. Next time you are in to your doctor, ask their advice! AND USE SUNSCREEN.
"Don't drink tequila like it's water."
Yes, have fun with your friends. But habits you develop now, will continue as you get older. Make sure you find balance in having a good time, vs becoming an addict. Know where the boundaries are and if you need help, don't be ashamed to seek help.
Quit smoking cigarettes (or never start). They are bad. We know that.
"Your metabolism WILL slow down." It isn't just an old wives tale. I wish it was. It actually IS harder to lose weight when you are older. Develop healthy eating habits. You will be surprised at how much it changes the way you feel and your overall wellness. Look into using an app like MyFitnessPal.
3. Respect yourself.
You are amazing. The things you are capable of are virtually limitless. You are valuable. Your body is unique and incredible. Your mind is complex and intricate. Treat yourself this way. Maybe even write some reminders on your mirror and read them every morning.
4. Get experience.
Work in different kinds of jobs. Take a job in the service industry (waiter, bartender, server). It will leave you with a perspective that is invaluable! It might make you lose faith in society, but it will change how you treat people and in turn, make the world a better place.
"If you haven't worked in retail or the service industry yet, DO IT... You will gain a whole new perspective on things."
Work hard and do the entry level positions. Hard work and dedication will directly reflect your success. Take your early jobs seriously. Build professional relationships and take all of the opportunities to learn leadership skills. Keep in mind that entry level jobs are only temporary beginnings to your journey.
Traveling changes you. The experiences you have and the people you meet, will change your life. Surrounding yourself with different cultures and new experiences broadens your perspective. Whether it is taking that study abroad class or even an inexpensive road trip with your roommate, DO IT. If you have the opportunities, take them.
6. Relationships; get real.
It’s important to be honest! Even if you think it’s worth not getting into a fight or you are afraid to hurt their feelings. “Little white lies” can lead to big problems down the road. Be sensitive, honest, and talk it out. Understand the difference between criticism and abuse.
Don't give up on the relationships that are important to you. It's not always easy being in a relationship - remind yourself that all good things take hard work and sacrifice.
"Don't take the people you love for granted. You never know when it might be the last time you see that person. And on that note don't be afraid to tell people how you feel about them."
It is ok to end or change relationships if they are unhealthy or make you unhappy. No matter how long you’ve been in a relationships (including friends). Staying in a relationship because of how long it has existed, is not a reason to continue an unhealthy relationship. Know that you are worthy of love. Know that the pain of ending any type of relationship is SO temporary in comparison to the pain of keeping the wrong person around.
Be a good person to be in a relationship with by working on yourself. Learn how to listen. Develop a strong belief in yourself by following through with your word. Don't be flaky. Trust that you are not a perfect person (yes, you can be wrong).
7. Learn who you are, love it, and work hard to make yourself better.
Take time to invest in your well-being. Spend a lot of time in self-reflection. Maybe even journal or meditate. Reflect on your actions and what you could have done differently. Remember that this is about you, so don't compare yourself to others.
Volunteer. Give your time to others that are less fortunate than you. Learn about your own privilege and how to use it to help others.
Question your parents' values and learn your own. Just because you were raised to believe something, doesn't mean you HAVE to believe it. Research, read, meditate, and learn as much as you can about your own beliefs and challenge them regularly as well.
"Don't measure your own progress based on others. We all have our own journeys. "
I will say this again - do not compare your success to others. Go at your own pace and learn what you really want to do. Be kind to yourself and never give up on your own personal growth.
So there you have it, you beautiful 20-something. Live your beautiful young life and I hope this helps guide you through the next 10 years!