5 Lessons I'm Learning In my 20's
As a young woman in my early 20s (23 to be exact) I find myself constantly learning a new lesson almost every day. Some of those lessons have not been easy to learn at all! But in these lessons, I am learning how to navigate through life with a different perspective than before which I find to only be beneficial for my growth. If you're also in your 20s right now or find yourself going through the growing pains that come along with this life then here are 5 lessons that I hope are of help to you as they have been to me.
Lesson #1: Growing Pains
To clarify I am not referencing the physical symptoms of a growing pain but what can feel like painful experiences that we go through in life to come out of those experiences as a different version of ourselves. It can be uncomfortable, and uneasy but it's a sign that we're growing and changing.
Growing pains happen when our minds are expanding to make room for new thoughts, ideas, beliefs, and emotions through experiences that we go through. When we experience growing pains it means that something inside us is changing – maybe our perspective on something has changed or we’ve learned something new; perhaps our habits have been challenged by someone else or we've become aware of an aspect of ourselves that needs improving. Regardless of what's causing these feelings in us; they're signs that change is happening! And while they may feel uncomfortable at times, they're only temporary yet necessary.
A lesson that I have learned with growing pains is that they are needed to become an elevated version of ourselves that knows better and can now do better than before. We find ourselves fighting this feeling when we choose to stay complacent and comfortable where we are versus getting out of our comfort zones because we may fear what lies ahead. The truth of the matter is going through these experiences is what fuels us to grow and sometimes we may never know what it is like to transcend If we do not allow ourselves to get comfortable with being uncomfortable but in the end knowing that we are going to get through it as a better version of ourselves.
Lesson #2: It's okay to say No.
Chile, this lesson is still one that I consistently have to teach myself and find the power in this one word. No.
I came across this video of Oprah Winfrey speaking of finding herself having the "Disease to please" When I heard her summarize that in just three words I truly had a lean back in my chair, fold my hands together under my chin and say "mmm" moment. If you can relate to having a disease to please and find yourself being characterized as the 'pick up the phone at the drop of a dime, 'stop what you're doing in your day at all times for those around you and don't know how to say no' my heart goes out to you because I understand those feelings all too well and am now able to realize how unhealthy that can be. When it has gotten to the point of feeling guilty for saying no and as though I have to explain myself for saying no I had to start looking in the mirror and say girl you gotta get it together and learn to just leave it at No without feeling bad about it or letting it sit on my mind that now what if this person(s) thinks differently of me or is unhappy with me but the thing is when someone truly respects you and understands the importance of boundaries then they won't have a choice but to respect that answer.
What I have learned is that there is so much power in saying No and it honestly feels so good when we allow ourselves to choose ourselves over the expectations of others. Does it make us selfish? Not at all, it's really about having a balance between the things we don't mind saying yes to vs saying yes because we feel like we have to appease others. If you feel like your relationship with someone would be jeopardized because you choose to set that boundary knowing that the other party would not respect you for it, is that a person that you want to be associated with?
Lesson #3: Patience, Persistence, Perseverance
Patience, Persistence, and Perseverance are the three most important skills that I am learning in my 20's so far. They're all related but each has its lessons to learn from them.
Patience is a virtue that everyone can benefit from learning how to develop or improve on. Patience is one thing that many people struggle with because we live in a world now where we expect everything to come to us when we want it at the moment and when we don't get what we want, we get restless and irritable. I am learning that patience is truly a virtue because life is not a race it's a marathon and when something doesn't come when we expect it to it most certainly will when we need it, have you ever reflected on your life and say wow I didn't get this at that time but it came to me at the most perfect time. During our time of having to be patient, the best thing that we can do for ourselves is developing a faith that everything is working out the way that it is intended to even when it may not feel like it and I know that can sound easier said than done but learning how to cope in those moments is what makes us stronger and prepared to receive more.
Persistence is closely related to patience because it's about continuing with something even after failure; sometimes we don't succeed at first but if we persevere then eventually we'll get there! Persistence teaches us how not to give up when things get difficult so instead of giving up let's dust ourselves off and try again.
Perseverance means continuing even when you have felt like you failed or not getting the results that you intended; this skill comes in handy when doing something new, taking a risk, stepping out of your comfort zone, or whatever that may look like to you. Sustaining that perseverance is where having the mindset of determination will be your best friend. If you want something badly enough then don’t stop until it happens…even if it feels like all odds are stacked against you!
Lesson #4: Self-Fulfillment
Self-fulfillment is the fulfillment of your own needs and wants, as opposed to fulfilling other people's expectations or desires. It means pursuing the things that make you happy, rather than what others want you to do with your life or what you feel like you have to do based on the societal norms that are pushed onto us. One of the greatest things that we can do for ourselves is to not allow ourselves to live by anyone else's expectations but by the ones that we set for ourselves.
If you find what feels fulfilling to you then don't let that thing fall by the wayside. Embrace that feeling because ultimately that is where true happiness lies.
If you aren't sure what feels most fulfilling for you ask yourself what is the thing that I can talk about for hours, that makes me light up inside and brings me excitement to share with others?
Lesson #5: It's All In Our Minds
It's all in our minds. Mindset is the most important factor when it comes to your success and happiness. I've learned that becoming mindful of what we focus our thoughts on is important because whether the thoughts are intentional or not, after a period of continuously thinking in a way or having a vision of ourselves, that will magnify our physical reality.
Whenever you feel your thoughts evading your mind, not in a positive way, take a minute to become aware of how you are thinking and decide how you can think differently. If a thought brings on stress, ask yourself what moment in your life can you focus on that made you feel the most at ease and relaxed.
What you think determines how you respond, and how you respond determines what happens next. When thinking about how you invasion yourself, how you want your life to go, the kind of people you want to attract into your life, and what you want to happen in your life be intentional.
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