It felt pretty fast to reach this age as someone who turned 29 earlier this year. Even though it may not be a particularly noteworthy number, especially since it is right before the big three-oh, you will find many people talking, discussing, and some even fear reaching the age of 30 that somehow the age of 29 passed unnoticed. Still, 29 marks the end of my 20s, which still feels significant. Nonetheless, I hope through this article to reflect on what I have learned during my twenties and shed light or ring a bell on the forgotten age of 29 that many people forget or ignore.
As people approach their late twenties, they may expect to have gained wisdom and stability. However, the reality can be different. I want to reflect on my past decisions and actions as I approach my thirties. This will allow me to learn from good and bad experiences and encounters from my early twenties. I am sharing below a few things or reminders I wish I could tell my early 20s self, some of which were already embedded in me, while others I realized later in my late twenties.
1- You Don’t Have to Figure it All Out!
Many in their early twenties think they will have everything figured out by the time they reach their late twenties, but this is not always the case. So many people decide to start fresh or change the trajectory of their lives in their late 20s. It’s okay to figure things out in your late twenties. My younger self had a different vision for my current 29-year-old self, but reality turned out better than expected. Remember that hard work, effort, and dedication will pay off eventually, even if it takes time.
2- Overthinking Will Not Change the Outcome
In my early 20s, I used to be an overthinker. It negatively impacted my life, relationships, and ability to function. I wanted control over everything but couldn’t handle the outcomes. This persisted until my mid-twenties. Practicing acceptance and trusting God’s timing has helped me overcome overthinking. Believing that good will come out of any circumstance, even if it feels unbearable, has allowed me to live in the moment and make memories without worrying.
3- Enjoy & Live in the Present Moment
When I was young, worrying about the future made me tense. Upon graduating with my Bachelor’s degree, I changed my major and left Libya for France. While doing my master’s studies in a new country, I struggled to enjoy the present and focused too much on the future. I have realized that I missed out on many precious moments in life because I was too focused on what was to come in the future. It’s essential to live in the present moment and truly cherish our time because there’s no getting it back once it’s gone. I have made a conscious effort to be more mindful and present in my daily life by the end of my 20s, and it has truly made a difference in my overall happiness and sense of fulfillment.
4- Live Your Age & Don’t Rush Getting Older
Some social pressure forces many people, especially women, to act older than their age. I came across many young women in my early twenties that acted as if they were in their late twenties and early thirties. It is connected with social pressure depriving many people of living their age, time, and moment. Because of it, many end up living a different age than theirs or would live following social norms that don’t necessarily serve them well. Although I cherish every age, I empathize with those who struggle with external pressure. It’s essential to trust in the natural flow of life and enjoy every moment, no matter your age. Don’t let society hold you back.
5- There is No Age Limit for Change
Life changes are always possible, whether it’s your major, business, location, relationship, or career. Leaving Libya five years ago was a considerable risk, but it allowed me to pursue my dream. Despite dedicating most of my time to studying and working on my career, I made mistakes in my mid-twenties regarding relationships due to a lack of experience and low self-esteem.
It wasn’t until my late twenties that I learned to value myself, recognize my worth, and stop making the same mistakes and settling for less than I deserve. There is no age limit to what you can achieve. Society sets the age limit, but you can move at your own pace. You don’t have to graduate or get married at 22, and starting over at 23 or 29 is okay.
6- What’s Meant for You Will Never Miss You
Whether it’s a career opportunity, education, or a relationship, whatever is meant for you will never miss you. Believe in God’s timing and learn that things will fall into place. You don’t have to waste time and energy pursuing relationships or paths in your early twenties that don’t feel right. You will meet the right person and graduate/find your passion at the right time, so never think you missed anything after a certain age.
7- Believe in Actions
Actions speak louder than words. It is one of the things that I started to understand in my late twenties, and it is part of increasing my awareness of myself and the people around me. Stop making excuses to people that deserve non of your time and energy. When people act a certain way, believe them and stop making excuses that will only prolong the struggle. People can say things that wouldn’t necessarily mean them. However, their actions reflect their true intentions, so always believe them.
8- Your Time & Energy Are Precious
Time has always been an essential element of my life. I never took it for granted, and I respect my time as much as I appreciate others. I firmly believe that saving time and energy is crucial. Invest in people and things that feel right and help you grow, develop, and be yourself. One of my few regrets is wasting time and energy on people who didn’t deserve it.
9- Sometimes, Not Getting a Closure is the Closure
We sometimes think that talking one last time or explaining ourselves in any relationship can help give you the closure you think you deserve. Not having one can bring you more peace than opening up again to those who caused you pain or always tried to misunderstand you. Sometimes, you will meet people who never tried to understand or fully accept you, and that causes you to have an unnecessary conflict that generates more discomfort and despise. I learned later that getting closure wouldn’t sincerely help and would only make you remember the pain you once forgot or have been trying to heal. You don’t have to seek closure when things end in the way you didn’t expect. Instead, accept, and let go.
I wanted to provide direct and specific advice based on my experience. Hopefully, this article helps you reflect on your 20s, and if you’re in your early 20s, it serves as a good reminder. Don’t forget to use the ‘Contact Me‘ form to share your thoughts, words, or ideas.