30 Lessons from my 20s

I’ve been extra nostalgic with the end of my twenties around the corner. During my twenties, I found my feet. I discovered who I am, who I’m not and who I want to be. I realized what I’m passionate about and what I’m good at, and I am understanding the mystery and purpose of life more and more every day. What I learned from my twenties is invaluable, and I’m grateful for each life lesson.

So, in honor of turning 30 years old on February 1, here are 30 lessons from my twenties:

1. Start Botox early.

If you can’t make a wrinkle, you can’t get one. Start Botox early as a preventive measure before you truly have wrinkles.

2. Be the nice girl.

It will always pay-off to be the nice girl instead of the catty girl. Be the girl who loves and includes everyone. You’ll never regret being kind, but you will regret being a bitch. Trust me on this one.

3. Put yourself in others’ shoes.

Empathy will serve you well. Always put yourself in other people’s shoes. Things are rarely black and white.

4. Moisturize.

I’m so thankful my mom bought me eye cream in my early 20s. Moisturize your face, eyes, neck and body everyday.

5. Put your marriage first.

A happy life starts with a happy home. Keep your marriage as your first priority, and you will reap the benefits of a happy home life, and consequently, life.

6. Dress to impress yourself.

Dress to make yourself feel confident and pretty, even if your style may seem odd to others.

7. Confidence is invaluable.

Confidence is magic. Real confidence comes from accepting and loving yourself just as you are. Boost that confidence even more by taking time to do small things to make yourself say, “Damn, girl.”

8. Let love fuel your actions.

Don’t let haste or spite fuel your actions. Act with love toward your partner, others and yourself. Love is kindness, and love is always the answer.

9. You don’t have to always open your mouth.

You don’t always have to prove your point. You don’t have to have the final word. You don’t always have to let everyone know where you stand on every issue.

10. Keep your word.

Your word is your reputation—with family, friends, acquaintances, colleagues and your partner.

11. Follow your heart.

Your heart and your gut are connected to a bigger power. Always follow your heart and gut instinct. It won’t take you in the wrong direction.

12. Take care of yourself.

Take care of your whole person—mind, body and spirit. Your mental and physical health are essential to you getting everything you want out of this life. And, your face is the only face you get, so take care of it. (Face lifts don’t count, it’s still your face.) Replace your beauty items upon running out, even though they are expensive. There’s a reason why you use them religiously, right?

13. Let your guard down.

When you keep walls up, you are only depriving yourself. Live and love without fear.

14. Build-up your savings account.

I know you think you’ll never find yourself in a time when you depend on your savings account—we did too. But when I quit my job, my husband and I were so thankful that we built-up our savings. It truly saved us and gave me the freedom to leave a soul-crushing workplace.

15. If you don’t like it, change it.

You spend more time at work than you do at home. Your relationship affects your entire life. You can be anyone you want to be. Life is short. If you’re unhappy with your job, location, relationship, etc., change it. Period.

16. Be a team player and a girl’s girl.

Though it seems you’ll get more recognition for doing it all by yourself, you likely won’t. And though it seems like women are in competition, we aren’t. Everyone is stronger and better when are in this thing together.

17. Say I’m sorry quickly.

Don’t let pride make you an asshole. Be the first to say I’m sorry. It’s the right thing to do, and you’ll never regret it.

18. Be gracious and grateful.

Extend grace to yourself and everyone around you, and never forget to be grateful for what you have in this moment. Most likely, you have things now that you wished for and prayed for in the past.

19. Life is mind over matter.

Your perspective and thoughts run your entire life. If you change your perspective, you change your thoughts. Be positive and know that there is a bright side to everything. Negativity never helps, and positivity is the best kind of perspective to have.

20. Call and visit your family.

We’re all getting older, and it’s pretty remarkable that we’ve had our blood family since we were born. Whoever you call family, make time to make new memories with them.

21. Live on faith.

I was in my mid 20s when I truly had to lean on my faith for the first time. It was my faith that got me through one part of my life and into a better space. Have faith that everything happens for a reason and that things will get better and pray for guidance to to help you follow the path meant for you.

22. Take chances.

Small chances can lead to big changes and big things. Let your faith and your heart guide you, and when your gut says, “Do this,” do it.

23. Constantly evolve.

Strive to be better, smarter, happier and more aware than you were before.

24. Accept that some friendships don’t last.

The friendships you had from your teens may not survive in your 20s. The friendships you make in your early 20s may not be in your life in your late 20s. And, that’s okay. Accept that not all friendships last, that people change, but that every relationship had a purpose in your life.

25. Put effort into those friendships that did last.

Good friends are hard to come by. If you have them, don’t take them for granted. Put effort into those relationships. One day, your kids will be grown, your parents may be gone and your spouse may gone—and you will need those friends.

26. Understand that the same path doesn’t work for everyone.

It’s okay if the path your friends took in life isn’t the same one you chose. It’s okay if you feel like you’re behind or further ahead than others in this timeline of life. Everyone must take their own path because we’re all meant to do different things.

27. Eat healthier.

What you eat affects you so much. Strive for a balanced diet, and you’ll never need to “diet.” 

28. Make goals and plans to reach them.

Life is about progressing and evolving. Figure out what you want, make a goal and make a plan to reach that goal. It’s okay if your goals change. It just means you’re evolving—go with it.

29. Put your best foot forward in everything you do.

If you aren’t putting your best efforts into something, you’re only cheating yourself. You get what you put into things, so give your all to your marriage, friends, career, family, goals, etc. and you’ll get the most out of those areas of your life.

30. Know that your life has a purpose.

One of the most humbling realizations is to know that you are loved by the universe and that your life has a specific purpose. You may not know your purpose yet, but life itself is about finding it..

Somewhere in life, I heard that your twenties are for finding yourself and your passions; your thirties are for building your success; and your forties are for enjoying what you’ve begun to build. I can confirm that the part about your twenties is true, and if the next part of the statement is true as well, I can’t wait to see what all I can build and create in this next decade called my thirties.

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