Turning twenty is such a defining life moment.
You are no longer the teenager, and with that comes a level of relief – but also a moment of nervousness. Should being twenty-something FEEL any different? Should I have my life figured out?
The deeper you delve into your twenties, the more this question comes up – 25 (oh God closer to 30 than 19), 26 (everyone I know is getting engaged and I haven’t even finished Uni yet), 27 (why do hangovers hurt so much all of a sudden?), 28 (since when did exercising become such a chore?), 29 (okay, one more year for me to get my life in order before I hit the big 3-0).
Your twenties are an amazing age – they are known to be some of the most life-defining you will experience. Time to study your real passions, define a career path, travel the world, move out of home (unless you’re living in Sydney, in which case it’s move BACK home) and fall in love.
BUT your twenties can also become a trap for trickiness when we start thinking they are the time we are meant to have our lives all figured out.
Comparison is a biggie too (thanks social media!) – because being in your twenties sees friends and loved ones making HUGE life decisions – buying a house, working long hours in a career, getting engaged and married, starting a family.
For some of us, these things are amazing and something to look forward to, while for others, this is enough to want to move overseas and never look back (another common twenties trend).
Either way, your twenties are a time to really find what makes YOU happy – and not living for anyone else.
A common trend I see with my twenty-something clients is this notion of comparing our lives, not only our friends and families who are seemingly more ‘successful’, but to complete strangers online. People we don’t even know.
This comparisonitis goes so far that many of us twenty-somethings are even comparing how we look to the filtered, edited images we see online.
This body image comparisonitis has become an alarming trend for women in their twenties (men too) and can have really serious effects. No longer are eating disorders a common trend among teenagers only – eating disorders are very real in young people in their twenties and up.
What these mental challenges stem from are feelings of not being ‘good enough’ or worthy. Looking at yourself in the mirror and not liking what you see. This isn’t made any easier when we are engaging in a digital world where it is acceptable for us to ‘swipe right or left’ on a prospective partner, judging mainly by what we see.
So, how do we counteract these feelings of low self-esteem and comparisonitis in our twenties?
Here are some quick tips for you:
- Do a social media audit. Review your Instagram feed for a day – any post that makes you feel BAD about yourself, rather than inspired and happy – unfollow. You have the power to control social media – it doesn’t have to control you. The minute you are feeling bad about something you are reading or seeing online, hit that unfollow button. On that, only follow pages that make you feel GOOD about yourself. It’s all about Self love, read more HERE
- Start to engage in activities that we used to in our teens – things that make us truly happy! Did you used to like Art class in high school? Then find a local class and start up again! Was writing your thing? Start journaling again! We get so caught up in the notion of ‘growing up’ that we start to leave pieces of ourselves behind – your twenties is a time to re-engage with these things and embrace your inner child!
- Spend time with people who make you happy and feeling good about yourself. Chances are you will start drifting from high school friends in your twenties – this is normal and okay. Cherish the friendships with people who light you up, make you laugh and inspire you. Don’t spend any time with people who make you feel any less
- Focus on the things that make you happy. If that is travel, book your next trip. If that is work, then work your butt off! If you don’t know what that is yet – that is okay too. Reach out to a coach (like me) or someone for advice or guidance. Check out this blog to gain an understanding what wellness is HERE
Too often we place unrealistic pressure on ourselves to have our lives sorted by the time we are in our twenties – when in fact, life is just beginning!
Take it easy and you will come to see that these years are some of the greatest of your life.