The difficult realisations you need to accept if you want to flourish in your 20s
There are some harsh truths about the real world that you only realise when you enter your 20s. While your final years of high school were spent trying to find out what you wanted to do with your life, you come to realise that landing your dream job isnât easy. If you want to get ahead and have both a flourishing career and life, these are the difficult realisations you need to acknowledge and accept.
Itâll be a few years of being unpaid/on a low wage
Itâs a hard reality to accept when you start uni and realise that youâll have to work for free. Between our social lives, part-time jobs and uni work, itâs hard to sign up for your fate at an unpaid internship when you're so exhausted as it is. You might put it off, but unfortunately it has to be done. If you want to get ahead and get closer to your dream job, youâll have to put in the hard years early on and acknowledge that in many industries, itâs just not possible to get paid for experience.
When you do finally land a full-time gig, it might not be the huge payout you were expecting. Entry-level jobs often donât have high salaries, so even after years of being unpaid, youâll still be underpaid for your efforts. Instead of throwing in the towel, itâs worth it to push through if you have the next step waiting at the end of the tunnel.
Your job shouldnât define you
When you land a full-time job, or even when youâre gaining all that experience at various internships, you canât let your work be the only thing happening in your life. You need a good balance between work and play, and having a one-track mind towards your career will only hinder or damage your other relationships.
If youâre going for a job interview, potential employers want to see more than just work experience on a piece of paper. They want someone who has interests and hobbies outside of work if they have to work alongside you. Itâs also important for you to develop outside interests in case one day you wake up and realise that this career isnât for you âÂ at least youâll have other things in your life going on to keep you going.
You shouldnât spend your life waiting for the weekend
On the other hand, you also shouldnât live your life with the philosophy that life begins and ends with the weekend. If youâre not truly enjoying what youâre doing at uni or at work, it might be a sign you need to change.
Thereâs always going to be subjects at uni you donât like and thereâs always going to be bad days at work where you donât love your job. But thereâs a difference between a few days and hating it all the time. If the only time youâre happy is when youâre away from work and youâre miserable at the thought of going to uni work, itâs time to reassess whether itâs right for you.