Who remembers the excitement of finally leaving school and being that one step closer to independence?
For me that was nearly twelve years ago, and as I cautiously approach my thirties, I can’t help but reflect back on what life has taught me during those years of confusion and unfettered fun, otherwise known as my 20s.
For so many people, the excitement of finally sprouting your wings is tempered by the harsh and humbling realities of adult life. But there is more to the confusing struggle through your twenties than it seems.
Each moment spent lost, broke, disappointed, hurt and heartbroken has taught you something, whether you’ve noticed it or not. So, to show you the reasoning behind your
So, to show you the reasoning behind your decade-long struggle into your 30s, here are a few little lessons that I have picked up along the way.
You are the Captain of your own Helm.
When life gets too overwhelming, it can be all too easy to relinquish your control over it in thinking that you simply don’t have a choice in the matter.
A wise man once told me that when you lose control of yourself, you give it to somebody else; and this has proven true for me time and again.
The bottom line is that even when you don’t think you have a choice to make, you absolutely do, it may just be that you don’t feel comfortable with your options.
Taking accountability for the events in your own life can be tough, because it forces you to face those demons which are nestled deep inside your core, and the process of doing this can be painful.
This is because being the captain of your own helm means you have to fess up to your own mistakes, own your decisions (both the good and the bad) and take responsibility for your own actions and shortcomings.
But if you are true to yourself and your plan (even in the face of criticism), you will feel all the prouder when you finally meet with success.
You are the Alpha and the Omega.
This lesson is closely tied to taking responsibility for your own choices, but with a more positive swing.
We hear it often enough that people should put themselves first if they stand any chance of finding happiness, but this is often followed by a sour remark about being selfish.
While being accommodating, kind and compassionate are certainly excellent traits to work on, they can be deconstructive when your selflessness causes you and yours to miss out.
Charity (with regards to time, emotions and finances) must start from home.
You are the most important person in your life by a long shot (unless you have kids), so be sure to treat yourself accordingly. Once you’ve taken care of your own, extending a helping hand to others becomes significantly easier, and more effective.
Don’t believe the Hype.
We live in a chaotic world brimming with advertising, rumors, minute-by-minute world-changing events and sheer, unchained excitement. In fact, there is so much going on all of the time that most people (including myself) may unwittingly get sold by the hype.
The truth is, that you are being lied to. You are being told that you are excited, and you feel excited, which is fine. But consider that you may have confused it with the fear of missing out.
There is plenty of excitement and wonder in this world, and the best of it exists well outside of the realms of media entertainment, up and coming products, a brand-new house or ‘earth-shattering’ political and entertainment events.
Instead of getting swept up in superficial hype, rather search for something more authentic, like the natural splendor of the world around us and the people you love.
Success and Love are Perspectival.
This one took me ages to learn.
Throughout my twenties, I’ve had a tendency to match up my own success in life, love and my career, with that of my father’s.
The trouble is that the two of us come from two very different time-periods and upbringings, and we both want very different things from life.
While he is driven by financial security and the warmth of our family, I want to explore the world and all that it has to offer without being tied down by responsibilities (just yet).
This has often led me to think that I am wasting my time, and I’m certain that my father would agree.
But by measuring my past in terms of what I’ve actually wanted to do, and how I have achieved these goals, I feel like I have moved mountains.
So, have I achieved success in life? Yes, I believe I have.
Everything is an Invention.
This one isn’t always easy to wrap your head around because we are deeply entrenched in a social system which dictates how we should behave, what our notion of success should be, and what path our lives should take.
While following the life plan set out for you by traditionalism is usually a safe bet, it may not be as fulfilling as you’ve hoped.
The good news is that there are other ways to live your life.
This is because everything we know about ourselves, our society, time, money, business, love and family are all based on ideals set out by people who are long dead. And while there is value in following their path, you need never feel like you are obliged to do so.
Every social rule you follow, your idea of love and the career you believe you should be in, are all based on ideas which are invented.
So, if they don’t work for you, invent your own rules and do it the way you feel would best work for you. In short, be your own lab rat if you want to.
So, over to you now. What other life lessons do you believe everyone should know before their 30th birthday?
About The Author
This is a guest post by Mark Greene, a lifestyle professional writer and digital nomad with a keen interest in men’s mental and physical health, life hacks, grooming and success. The world, according to him, is what you make of it.