Being a 20-something can be both exciting and daunting. It’s a stage where individuals transition from school to the workforce and begin to navigate their adult lives. It’s natural to feel overwhelmed with tasks like finding a job, renting an apartment, and managing finances. However, it’s also a time when freedom and independence are at their highest, providing individuals with opportunities to make the most of their lives. While there may not be an instruction manual for the perfect twenties, several tips and insights from elders and peers can give a sense of direction.
1. Stay Organized
Being organized from the get-go can reduce anxiety and save time in the long run. Keeping vital documents, receipts, work portfolios, and other important files in a filing cabinet and binders would help in streamlining essential information handy. Investing in reminder apps and Post-it notes can also establish a habit of good organization and make life simpler in the future.
2. Work on the Weekends
Taking a break on the weekends is crucial to maintain a work-life balance, but working a couple of hours to ponder over pending work issues can save time during the workweek. Considering and mapping out solutions during downtime can increase workplace productivity and be viewed positively by colleagues.
3. Smile Every Day
Smiling can have various positive effects on individuals, including predicting a long lifespan while increasing one’s perceived confidence and success. Smiling in the workplace can make one more approachable to colleagues and potential partners in work environments that require open communication. Moreover, it might not only brighten one’s day but also the people around them.
4. Write Down Your Goals
As individuals take on more responsibilities, it can be tough to set aside time for oneself. However, not continuing to pursue personal goals and ambitions can lead to dissatisfaction and lethargy. Hence, keeping track of progress, quantifying benchmarks, and holding oneself accountable for targets can keep motivation boosted towards accomplishing goals.
5. Workout and Stay Healthy
Working out is not everyone’s cup of tea, and finding a fitness schedule that suits and motivates oneself can take several attempts. However, committing to work out regularly or with a friend and holding oneself accountable using commitment contracts like stickK can establish a healthy lifestyle. Also, small rewards to match individual targets can increase motivation and keep a healthy lifestyle on track.
6. Ask for Ways to Improve
One of the best ways to grow professionally is by asking colleagues or superiors for feedback. As individuals work in busy environments, it is challenging to evaluate one’s performance objectively. Hence, scheduling a meeting with a workmate or supervisor and asking them for insight on ways to improve can challenge oneself and develop skills.
7. Start a Side Project
One of the advantages of being in one’s 20s is having the energy, creativity, and free time. Starting a project that one is passionate about, whether it is building a bike or selling handmade soap on Etsy can be fulfilling and motivating if feeling stuck or uninspired.
8. Stay Up-to-Date with News
Being aware of world news is essential to be globally-conscious as individuals are establishing their places in a rapidly changing world. Instead of only sticking to one’s regular interests, reading articles beyond one’s comfort zone might spark new, interesting topics and promote well-roundedness.
9. Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously
As young adults, it is natural to seek recognition and appreciation for one’s efforts. However, maintaining a sense of humor and lightheartedness when dealing with work stress can keep things enjoyable while allowing oneself to make and learn from inevitable mistakes.
10. Drink Less
Although drinking with friends can be fun, the effects of heavy or binge drinking can become harder to shake off as one ages. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) states that young adults are at the highest risk for heavy or binge drinking. Since taking care of one’s health ultimately increases productivity and clarity of mind, it might be helpful to monitor drinking habits and reduce the number of drinks.
11. Blog on a Topic You’re Passionate About
Blogging allows individuals to share their experiences and knowledge and establish credibility in their fields. Even committing to contributing to an existing blog can promote a sense of purpose and motivation.
12. Meet with Successful/Established Individuals
Learning from those who have experience in one’s chosen field can be beneficial. It might seem like a challenge to reach out to an established person, but if their contact information is available, it is always worth a shot. Expressing enthusiasm for their work and asking for personal insights can reveal significant knowledge and expertise that can motivate and help with individual career paths.
13. Keep a Journal
Keeping a journal can be beneficial in analyzing personal growth in the past and present, reminding oneself of achievements and goals, or releasing stress after a hectic day. Even writing a sentence or two each day can give an insight into how one’s life has changed and the personal progress that has come along with it.
14. Read a Book Every Couple of Months
Reading during leisure time, whether it’s non-fiction or fiction, can reduce stress, be informative, and promote cognitive flexibility. Picking up a book on a topic outside one’s usual interests can introduce new perspectives and broaden horizons.
Twenty-somethings are going through a unique and formidable transition in life. While it might seem daunting at a glance, it is essential to remember that it is also an exciting time of newfound freedom, independence, and opportunity. Moreover, these tips aim to remind young adults that taking initiative and working on personal growth during this stage can positively impact their entire adult life.