Being in the middle of something that feels difficult or overwhelming can make you question yourself and the choices you have made. But once you’re on the other side ask yourself
“was that an actual crisis or was it just par for the course?”
I have asked a few people to share what they have learnt in their 20’s, this is the first segment in the series, every few weeks there will be another 5 lessons so please feel free to submit your own thoughts or questions and I will be happy to add them to a future post.
1. Alcohol is not your friend (it’s definitely not mine) – I love a well made cocktail, wine makes me crazy and shots make me dance like Beyonce (at least that’s what I think at the time). I am untouchable, sassy and I think I can take anyone, so surely alcohol is my BFF right? Hell. No. I don’t know what happened, but as soon as I hit 25 and, I don’t know 3 months? That was it, I suddenly started having the worst hangovers. I didn’t even get a warning, it was a full on, death. And the worst part? No one sympathizes with you!! My mother? My sisters? My boyfriend??? They all say “this is self inflicted”, but it’s really not! I can’t help it if my friends keep giving me drinks! Saying no is so hard! Lesson – Drink lots of water in between your drinks and eat before you party. If you want to get drunk that’s on you but to avoid feeling like your never gonna be OK again line your stomach and hydrate! And maybe trade your family and partner in for a nicer bunch…
2. Not everyone will like you – You could be the friendliest person in the world with the best intentions, but you can’t win everyone over and that’s OK. I’d like to think I’m quite nice to anyone that I meet, but as I’ve gotten older I have recognized a slight look of indifference when speaking to someone, me being me I question what it is that I’ve done, how have I offended them? I used to spend so much time fretting about why someone didn’t like me, especially if they hadn’t got to know me and vice versa but now I really don’t care. Lesson – If someone has decided they don’t like you you cannot change their mind, and why should you? As long as you have people that care about you and you stay away from those that don’t there will be minimal drama.
3. You can’t be Friends With Benefits and not catch feelings – (I feel like this is a whole post to itself… But I’ll keep this short). For now I speak solely for women, we are not programmed to be physically intimate with someone without the emotional attachments that are naturally formed during sex. No matter how many rules are put in place you cannot control your feelings, and if you really think about it, do you want to? You’ve agreed to this arrangement because you enjoy this persons physique and (maybe even) their personality, so why go through the rigmarole of lying to yourself? It’s like the total opposite of having your cake and eating it, sure lick the icing, hell you can sniff it but don’t you dare go falling head over heels for it! That. Is. Against. The. Rules!!!! You tell someone they can’t have something they are gonna want it even more. I genuinely want to know what the guys out there feel about the FWB arrangement…? Lesson – As there is so much more that can be said on this topic I’ll leave you to ponder on this… For now.
4. You won’t die from heartache
This was so hard to get your head around, it still is. A break up. Will. Not. Kill. You. Yes, it may crush you and yes you may feel like you don’t want to eat, shower, see the light of day ever again. But one day you will get up and that person will not be the first thing on your mind. By the time you are in your mid 20’s you have work, family and friends to occupy you, the emotional trauma of a heartbreak will be devastating in that moment and for a while after, but it is not eternal. Lesson – Surround yourself with people and activities that will keep you busy, but only after you have really given yourself time to mourn the relationship.
5. Trim the fat – Work, school, friends of friends, there are so many ways in which we meet people, or rather collect them, look at your Facebook friend list for example, that is a pretty good indication of who you have met in the last 10 years. Now how many of those people do you actively talk to? At some point you stop trying to accumulate people and you start to invest in the people that are there through the good and bad, as cliched as it sounds. Lesson – Recognizing who means the most to you and nurturing those relationships will lead to a simpler, fuller and happier life.
Remember you can get involved by submitting your own experiences.
To be continued…