Five sayings to live by if you want to nail your 20s
Being in your 20s has its up and downs. On one hand, you’re finally learning how to bridge the gap between being a teenager and nailing this grown up stuff, while on the other you’re realising just how much you don’t know about adulting. Luckily, the bright young thangs of ages past experienced the exact same things you are, and they managed to come up with a few sayings to keep in mind as you navigate the big, bright world. Don’t worry, we promise there are no comments about how the world is your oyster (what does that one even mean).
Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst
Repeat after me: I will always have a backup plan (or at least a skeleton outline of a backup plan) in case something unexpected goes terribly wrong. This saying is a great thing to keep in mind as you carpe diem the shit out of your 20s. You can have the peace of mind to take on the world while knowing that your foundations aren’t going to crack if life does decide to throw you a curve ball. Think of it like a zombie survival plan for life – it’s probably never going to happen, but you’ll know what to do if it does.
It’s five o’clock somewhere
There should always be time in your schedule to kick back with your mates and relax. While working hard and laying the foundations of your future is great, you’ll also want to let your hair down. It might not necessarily involve alcoholic beverages – say yes to that catch-up dinner you were putting off because you had work to do. Make an effort to keep in touch with your squad once uni and life separates you. You’ll appreciate the downtime when things get tough.
No pain, no gain
Much like Sam and Frodo’s brotastic relationship in The Lord of the Rings, every great thing you want to achieve is going to take some struggling to get there. Whether it’s improving your health, getting better grades, nabbing your dream grad job or exposing yourself to all the experiences life has to offer, a lot of blood, sweat and tears will be shed before you arrive where you want to go. Remember this one when you feel like packing it in and curling up with Netflix until the end of days – all that effort and hardship will be worth it in the end.
Fortune favours the bold
Your 20s is the perfect time in your life to take risks and be selfish. Think about it, you’ve got no kids, no mortgage and minimal grown-up responsibilities, meaning that you can chop and change as much as you need to. If you have a feeling that an opportunity in front of you is the right thing for you, make sure you take it. If you really want to drop everything and take off travelling (and you have a back-up plan for when you get back), why not do it. You never know when something you did purely because you felt like it can turn into something more. Taking a risk might just lead you to your next big break.
When in Rome, do as the Romans do
Starting a new job or travelling to a new country can be a daunting experience, so it makes sense that you’ll want to carry on doing the same things you always do in new environments. But you never know which habit might rub the people around you the wrong way. Take a step back and acquaint yourself with the behaviour of the people around you, as you’ll want to follow their cues until you’re comfortable enough to start venturing off the beaten path. Heck, you might even make a few friends if you show that you’re willing to respect the already established way of life in whatever new thing you’re experiencing.
Shannon Coward is a third year Bachelor of Journalism and Bachelor of Arts student at the University of Queensland. She enjoys period dramas, doughnuts and a good nap.