11 lessons you should learn in your twenties

Your 20s are the new black

11 lessons you should learn in your twenties (Courtesy)

I’m in my twenties. And I am no life guru. But I associate with a lot of older people who reminded me what being in the twenties is all about.

Besides aiming to get arrested for loitering at least once or smoking a dooby, here are twelve things you MUST know about your twenties.

Your friends’ success has nothing to do with yours

So you always wonder why your time isn’t there yet because your buddy already has a car, well-paying job and is married. You’re probably a shiftless layabout renting your folks’ SQ with an entry level job. You need to remember that just because you were classmates doesn’t mean you share a life. Ask yourself why you don’t wonder about your buddies’ failures causing more failure in your life.

Prioritise yourself

You come first. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Consider your well-being and mental health first. If not for the sake of your sanity then for your future.

Social media is a lie

The thing with IG and Snap is that they don’t have a side B. Nobody will share with the public about how badly their days are going or how they struggled to get rent. It’s always sunshine and diamonds, so don’t guide your life decisions based on the fact that Njoki has a new Mustang and you can barely afford bus fare.

Don’t succumb to pressure

There will always be external forces who think they know better than you. Parents, spouses, elder siblings. They will always have something to say. They will force you to take a job you don’t want or make you get married before you’re ready. Just don’t succumb. Make them see reason or ignore them altogether.

It gets worse before it gets better

Your first few jobs, if you’re one of the ones who haven’t ridden on the coat tails of straight A’s or dubious networking, will be horrible. And if you’re one of those entrepreneurs or ambitious corporate climbers- it will get worse before it gets better because of other human elements and because, for some reason, life just has to go that way.

Take advantage of your support systems

Your parents, your friends, your family friends who own companies, take advantage. Don’t worry about “being unfair”. Fairness won’t pay your bills.

Be humble

This goes without saying.

Don’t accept every opportunity

Some things will be a waste of time and energy. You don’t need to work every job that opens up for you. Make considerations for pay, room for growth, actual responsibilities and the reports of former employees about the work environment.

Protect yourself

For crying out loud, use a condom.

Get regular health check-ups

With how many lifestyle diseases are on the rise, it would be extremely prudent to get prostate exams, cancer screenings, pap smears etc. as often as possible. Even dental exams.

It’s ok not to know

One thing millennials like to punish themselves for is not having the answers to everything. But most adults will tell you that it’s ok not to know. What is unforgivable is being arrogant about your ignorance. Care. Read a book. Watch international news. Pay attention. There’s more to the world than how many people liked your latest selfie. You’d be surprised how much of a difference 20 year olds could make if they knew what to do beyond Twitter and only showing up to vote.

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