I remember being fourteen and laying awake at night wishing I could be just ten years older. Twenty-four hit me like a ton of bricks. It was the end to years of worrying about if I was fitting in, and how I could lose weight fast. But it was also the beginning of a couple of years of adulthood. Of wearing sunscreen every day, of working out because it’s part of your life, of looking into whether you could get away with lip fillers and if your crow’s feet are noticeable.
These are the years of kombucha and trying new healthy things. Apple cider vinegar anyone? Thirty is approaching. And things start happening like buying houses, friends having babies, getting engaged, getting married. It’s a whirlwind. And because it’s such a crazy time in life, you definitely learn to let go of what doesn’t matter. Here are just five things you learn to let go of in your twenties if you have any more to add – pop them in the comment box below!
1. Thinking everybody else gets it
The older you get, the more you realize that nobody truly ‘fits in’ anywhere. Everybody is just as weird and neurotic, and finding people from all paths who have the same fears and thoughts is just confirmation of that fact. As the years go by, you lose some of that early twenties insecurity and your self-confidence starts to skyrocket.
In your early twenties, you’d be forgiven for thinking everyone is just as confident in making a doctor’s appointment, and everyone knows how to file their own taxes. Nobody knows that stuff, we’re all just figuring it out.
2. Working too hard
Plenty of successful women have said their one regret has been their work ethic in their twenties. It’s so easy to think that working well means working ALL THE TIME. And that sleep, rest, and play is a luxury you don’t really deserve (yet!). But as you get older, you realize that you can still have it all and take a few days off for yourself too. There’s beauty in silencing your phone and treating yourself.
As you approach your thirties, you’ll realize there’s nothing better than booking yourself a vacation. That not every request needs to be answered five seconds after you receive it, and sometimes, things can wait.
3. Underestimating yourself
Whether you’ve just graduated or have been in the working world for a while, underestimating yourself is a common problem. You start off thinking you have a lot to learn, and you never really move away from that mindset. Even though your work and skills move on, your mindset still tells you that you’re not worth a pay rise, that there are people more qualified than you, that you’ll be replaced once the company figures it out.
As you get older, though, you start to see your own worth. You know the value of your time because you spend so much of it on things, and you’ll work on skills to make sure you are always irreplaceable and valuable. Those insecure notions that you’re not good enough never fully go away, but as you get older they are definitely replaced by a healthy amount of ego about your own achievements.
4. Chasing one-sided friendships
It’s a sad fact of being in your twenties, but it’s one that definitely occurs. Once you leave school it can be difficult to stay in touch, and if your self-confidence has taken a knock or two, it can feel like people aren’t replying to your messages on purpose. You will very quickly see who gives back the same amount of effort in a friendship or relationship, and instead, focus your energies on nurturing those.
As you get older and busier, you have no time for negativity. It’s a perfect time to spend time with those who love you and stop dwelling on those who don’t. The frustration you felt in your early twenties will have melted away by the time you’re twenty-five.
5. Unhealthy behaviors
When you start getting older, you have a sudden and inexplicable interest in self-improvement, skincare, and how to make yourself stay young. This is something that develops around the 25 mark because, before that, you feel pretty much invincible.
Your cells stop regenerating at a rapid rate when you’re twenty-five, so it’s pretty much a given that you’ll start looking for lotions, potions, and the best skin care on the market. But within a few years, you’ll have let go of some of your unhealthiest behaviors to make way for a new, improved, version of yourself.
Photo Lily James
…come to those who sign up for our emails