On the flip side, I realize that I’ve lived quite a bit in the past 39 years. I’ve had great times, and not so great times. I’ve learned valuable lessons the easy way and hard way occasionally.
So I’ve asked myself the question that many do – “What are the things I would tell my 20 year old self?”
My 20 year old self – this is the advice I would give you:
- Start working out regularly and don’t stop. It’s harder to lose the pounds as you get closer to your 40s.
- Create a special “Do Not Touch Until I’m 40″ fund where you deposit $20 a month. That would make it $4,800 saved before interest in the span of 20 years, enough for a fabulous trip somewhere nice or to reinvest for retirement.
- Purchase only a few quality, classic shoes and items of clothing and learn to accessorize. Cheap chic can add up to many dollars wasted over the years as these poorly made clothes tend to fall apart quickly or lose their trendiness.
- The library is your friend. Bookstores can be a money-suck. Just don’t stop reading!
- Take salsa, merengue, cha-cha and bachata lessons. You’ll be the queen of the dance floor and it’s super fun. Not to mention, it’s great exercise.
- Get outdoors more on summer weekends than hitting the clubs. You will find yourself in nature.
- Learn how to make perogies from your grandmother. She won’t be around forever.
- Friendships are sometimes not always what they seem – look out for yourself and keep your integrity.
- Always be yourself. Don’t let others dictate how you think, dress or behave.
- Your parents mean you well – have patience with them. They will mold you into a normal human being through all their worry and nagging.
Now is the time to think about what my 60 year old self would say to my 40 year old self. Forecasting ahead to what my life will be like realistically, I can put in place activities and attitudes now that could potentially make my life much easier then. We often forget that time does not stand still because we are obsessed with living now. So many things that we are doing in the present are not as important as we think them to be.
I hope that when I’m 60, my list of things I’d say to my 40 year old self would be no more than five. It’s my plan for the next 21 years!
What is the most important thing you’d tell your 20 year old self?