Hi, friends! Welcome back to Stylishly Good Vibes! I’m taking a different approach to today’s blog post by sharing some real life advice with ya! Obviously, I’m no expert about being in your 20s, but I’ve experienced a lot of things in these oh-so formative years. So, I figured why not compile them into a fun little blog post for ya!
I don’t feel like this post needs to be prefaced anymore than by what I’m about to say.
Being in your 20s isn’t about having it all figured out. It’s about accepting the fact that you’re on the never-ending journey OF figuring it out. That’s life. It’s a series of choices we make out of fear and out of risk.
Okay, let’s get started!
Control Your Finances.
I don’t know about you, but figuring out the financial aspects of adulthood has been difficult for me. Balancing everything, paying bills, spending without spending too much—it can all creep up on you very, very fast. With each month that goes by, I keep telling myself “next month will be better.” And my control over my finances has improved, but it’s still not quite where I want it to be.
When you go from living at home to living on your own, you have to change your mindset, which seems obvious, but it’s a lot more than that. I’ve lived on my own in a different state before, but this time around feels different. Maybe because I have more adult things I need to pay for, but that’s your mid-20s for ya!
Figuring Out Financial Independence.
I feel confident in my financial independence when I make a detailed budget. This doesn’t work for everyone, but it does for me. I’m a Libra thru and thru, and by that I mean that I’ll just keep spending money on stupid shit if no one stops me. So, I have to be the one who stops myself!
I make a budget based on the items I regularly pay for each month. Whatever funds are leftover, I decide how much of that is “free money” to spend on things I want, like skin care. Yeah, mostly skin care.
If your employer offers a retirement plan, contribute to it.
This might seem like a no-brainer, but I know some people who don’t contribute to their employer’s sponsored retirement plan and I’m like WTF!!! Do you ever want to retire in your life? Seriously. If you want to be able to not work every single day for the rest of your life, then you need to contribute to a 401k or an IRA. Yes, I’m very passionate about this.
Most employers will match your contribution in some capacity, which I think is a good enough reason to contribute. How much you contribute is up to you and your own financial situation. Even if you’re just contributing 3-6% of your paycheck to your retirement plan, it’s better than doing nothing at all.
Take Care of Yourself.
I never really thought much about my personal health until I was hit by a car a few years ago. Oh yeah, that happened. Story for a different day! Anyways, that accident made me realize how important it is to put your health and how you feel first.
Because of the accident, I live with chronic pain every single day—I just don’t really talk about it much. I can’t sit for long periods of time without the left side of my body cramping up, and I have to sit with my left leg outstretched for most of the day. Sciatica is THE WORST. But, instead of letting the pain win, I reached out for help.
Do Things That Make You Feel Good.
I go to a chiropractor every three weeks because that’s what my body needs to get through each day. Although the whole chronic pain thing is kind of a bummer, going to the chiropractor has helped immensely. This is something that I budget for every month because I know that I couldn’t do the things I do today if I didn’t have my chiropractor’s help and support.
Invest in Hobbies.
I feel like my generation is the generation of short-lived hobbies. We get an idea to start doing something, we do it for a few months, and then it’s onto the next. I do it! You probably do it! We all do it! Because of that, I’ve been trying to get into some of my old hobbies as a way to occupy my time when I’m not at work.
I’ve started to play guitar again, gotten back into painting, and I’ve been trying to free-hand needlepoint. I basically sound like a retired grandma, but I love it! Find things that inspired you as a kid and start doing them again. Clearly you loved doing them at one point in your life, so I’m sure you would enjoy them today!
A Quick Podcast Recommendation.
This topic also reminds me of a podcast I listened to. On The Ed Mylett Show, relationship expert Matthew Hussey talked about the importance of having hobbies outside of your relationship. When you have hobbies that bring you joy in your personal life, you are less likely to fall apart if your relationship ends.
A few splinters might fall off of your being, so to speak, but you won’t fall apart. I don’t know, I just thought it was a really cool idea and one that I believe in wholeheartedly. Do your own thing, always. Also—don’t abandon your hobbies simply because you’re in a relationship!
Accept that you are not on a timeline to reach success.
I was thinking about this the other day, actually. When I was in college, I always used to think that I had to have some crazy-amazing job in a big city before I was 25. I don’t know what alternate universe I was living in back then, but that’s just not the reality.
With the three full-time jobs I’ve had in my post-college life, I’ve realized that I’m not on anyone’s timeline for success, but my own. As I’ve matured, I’ve come to understand that my success will be based on how much I love my career and what I do. When I left my old job back in November, I really wasn’t sure if this career move was going to be what I wanted. I had a sour taste in my mouth from my last office job, so I was kind of hesitant about this new one.
Trust the Journey.
But, I was proven very wrong. My new job is nothing like my old office job in the best way possible. I’ve realized that I can flourish in this environment because I get to do the thing I love doing the most. Building brand stories is my jam and I get to do that all day long. Although I’m not “successful” financially by any means, I feel successful in that I know I’m doing a great job at my job, ya know?
The only person who is making you follow a timeline is you. Cut yourself some slack and ride the wave of life. Honestly, who would want a career that peaks when you’re 25? That’s kind of lame because then what else are you reaching for the rest of your career? Just a thought!
Well, that’s all I have for ya today! Just remember that you’re never alone on your quest to figure it out. Talk to your loved ones, your therapist, or a complete stranger! Everyone knows how it feels to go through your 20s, and asking for help or guidance has been one of the best decisions I’ve made about these formative years of my life.
Until next time!
Sweater (BB Dakota), Blouse (Free People from Avalon Exchange), Jeans (Madewell)