I’ve learned so many things these past couple of years. I’m a 23 year old in the middle of growing up and letting go of my past, and I’m not the only one. Growing up isn’t easy… And I don’t mean growing up as in getting a job, or a place of your own(which let’s be real, paying bills isn’t easy sometimes either)… But really growing up. Your mind, your attitude, your persona. I’ve been struggling with that lately, and here’s what I’ve learned, and have been taught, to make this a little bit easier.
1. If You’re Not Losing Friends, You’re Not Growing Up
Cliché, maybe. But it’s true. You don’t need to hang on to relationships that don’t better you, or that you feel you have to work extra hard on. It’s okay to let people go that you never thought you would. Is it easy? No. But you just have to keep reminding yourself why you’re doing it. Length of relationship, or friendship, is no excuse. If they’re toxic to you, or you’re growing at different paces, let it go. It doesn’t mean you have to completely stop talking to that person, or you can never hangout. But learn not to depend on them as much. Part of growing up is learning to depend on yourself.
2. Learn What You Love
Learning what you love is the key to happiness. If it’s sitting on your couch watching Netflix, then do that. If it’s going on adventures, then do that. Learn to love doing it alone, because if you can do that, you’ll be so much happier. It’s time to become more independent. This doesn’t mean do everything alone…I’m not saying that at all. But there are going to be times in your life where you either just want to be alone, or no one’s available. These are the times you need to be comfortable with being alone. Learning what you love to do will help you get through those times, or any other rough times you’re having. For me, it’s blogging. When I’m having a rough time, I lay in bed and just type my little heart out. I don’t always post it, but getting it out feels good for me. So what feels good for you? Do it.
3. Give People Chances, But Not Too Many
It’s good to trust people. It’s good to give them a chance to impress you. But be careful how many you give them. And remember, actions speak louder than words. If they’re doing nothing to show you they’re trying, why is it worth the pain of keeping them in your life? Meet new people, try new things, and be open. Just know what you’re looking for, and know your self-worth. This will help you to not settle when it comes to anything/anyone making you happy. How many chances do you think is too many?
4. Money, Money, Money…
This is your time to start saving. Now, this is coming from a girl who can’t keep a penny in her bank account because of the new shoes and clothes. But really, it’s time to get serious. Start a retirement savings, start investing, start SAVING. Put a certain amount of your paycheck aside each week, and watch the savings grow. Down the road when you want the house with the bigger closet, or the nicer car, you will have a better chance of getting it. And who doesn’t want to go traveling? Save a certain amount and then travel the world. Do something to reward yourself for saving! Of course don’t use all of the money since that would defeat the purpose haha but you know what I mean. Also, it’s good for emergencies. You never know when something will come up. It’s time to depend on yourself.
5. Accept Your Mistakes
Everybody makes mistakes. You’re only in the wrong if you don’t learn from them. Mistakes make you into a better person. With all of the mistakes I’ve made in my best, I have better knowledge of how to handle situations. When you make a mistake, don’t go crazy and get upset…just acknowledge it, and accept it. Take responsibility for what you did wrong. Nobody’s going to hate you if you take responsibility and apologize. Now this goes back to giving people chances, but not too many. If you make mistakes over and over again, you can expect larger consequences. But just learn from it, so you don’t get to that point.
6. Don’t Give Up
I can’t tell you how many days I had just sitting down thinking the worst. I didn’t get the promotion I wanted, or I got in a really big fight with my friends, or the guy I like doesn’t like me back. I don’t know, whatever it may be isn’t worth giving up. One of my favorite quotes, not sure who said it, is “Your Life Only Gets Better When You Do. Work On Yourself And The Rest Will Follow.” Think of that when you’re feeling down, and just know that an arrow can only move forward by being pulled backwards. I’ve gone through some really hard times that have made the normal hard times even harder. But don’t give up. Keep working hard at your job to get that promotion. Keep meeting new people until you find the right group to make you happy. Find a relationship that gives you the butterflies and makes you want to be better. Life is good.
7. Find Out Who You Are
Tying together everything I just talked about…You need to find out who you are. Who do you want to be? Independent, Loving, Caring, Strong…Whatever it is, figure it out. Figure it out, and then stick to it with everything you go through. You don’t need to define yourself as something specific…But just knowing who you are and who you want to be, will help guide you to the future that will make you happy. Be happy with who you are, and the right people will come along!
Work on this…Having a job your passionate about, not just working for money. Having friends who truly care about you, not ones that only think about themselves. Being in a relationship where you trust one another, not restrict one another. Being with family who you love, and who cares about you the most. All of these things are so important to learn at a younger age, to set up for a good future. But most importantly, don’t think too far into the future. Do what makes you happy now. You naturally will grow and change every year. You cannot plan out your life and tell yourself what will make you happy in 20 years from now. Be happy everyday, and you will have less regrets later in life.