Well, today I am the big 2-9! And as I enter the last year of my twenties, I have to say I have learned quite a bit about life and loss and family and friends and everything in between. That being said, I am looking forward to all the newness 29 will bring. Here are five takeaways* my twenties has taught me!
*This list could change seeing as how I have one more year left in the 20’s, but you get the idea
1. Quality vs. Quantity: When I was in my early twenties, consumerism was at an all-time high. Instant gratification. What is it people say about millennials? We want what we want and we want it now? There was minimal responsibility and an emphasis on maximum fun. It was about quantity. How much stuff can I get? How many friends do I have? Is my image portraying what I want people to see? But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that quantity is fleeting and quality is long-lasting. Whether it’s friendships or a purse, quality should be what gets you to buy-in. I mean, of course you have that beach bag that you don’t mind ruining in the sand, but a YSL clutch for a nice dinner? Save your pennies for the good stuff. Appreciate that good stuff that you worked hard for.
And yes, you have those good-time gals, the ones that are your go-to for a fun night out. But when stuff hits the fan, and believe me, stuff will hit the fan, who gets in the nitty gritty with you to pull you out, who takes the good with the bad and the not-so-pretty? I’ve got a couple of besties who fit both of those bills and I consider myself extremely lucky. Holding onto stuff (toxic relationships, worn shoes with no soles (and no soul, get it?), a hardened nail polish from 2007) only holds you back. Choose carefully and wisely who and what you choose to surround yourself with.
Remember, Elizabeth Taylor said, “It’s not the having – it’s the getting.”
2. Loss is Inevitable, but Never Lose Hope: We lose a lot in life: friends, jobs, relationships, football games (I see you, Ole Miss). People we love dearly pass away. There is a grieving process for it all. There’s a shock to your system when you lose someone or something. Sometimes the loss doesn’t even feel real. This may sound overplayed, but life goes by quickly and sometimes you wake up and just pick up the pieces and move on, but a piece of you is stuck in your grief, in your sadness, and you feel like you’ll never move forward wholly. Never lose your sense of hope. Hope for better, hope for healing, for mending. If you don’t follow @theloveletterlibrary on Insta, go follow them now. Shoutout to my friend Anna for sharing their Gram with me. They posted such a beautiful post about hope and I couldn’t say it any better, so I’ll leave this section with this:
Even in what seems like the darkest of times, hope has a tendency to spark even the tiniest glimmer of light. It holds on to your heart and refuses to let go. It demands to not only be seen but to be felt. Hope teaches us that there are lessons in all we walk through. Hope reminds us that there are things to be thankful for at every turn. Hope holds us together long enough for our minds to catch up to our hearts. Here’s to finding the hope in all things.
3. Family is Everything: This one is pretty self-explanatory, but it’s important to mention, nonetheless. We love family, whether that family is by birth or by friendship (because friends can easily become family), but we are also hard on family. We hold them to the highest standard. But you laugh until your stomach hurts, and smile until your cheeks ache until feelings get hurt and dishes get put in the dishwasher the wrong way. The biggest takeaway from this is that you never know what Time has planned up his tricky sleeve. Say “I love you”, check in, be present. Don’t worry about those damn dishes. Forgive quickly. Hug each other. You may think that the people closest to you may know how you feel, but they might not. Do all the things you want to with the people you love and say all the things that need to be said. Hold people accountable, but don’t tear them down. Build each other up. It’s the best thing for a family. Communicate. Love one another.
And here’s a tip for some fun: have a family dance off or a lip sync battle. Endless entertainment and laughs. Guaranteed.
4. Grit: One of the greatest things my parents have bestowed upon me is a solid work ethic and the determination to not give up on myself. Things will pop up that have the potential to break you, but it’s that perseverance, that grit, that will see you through it. I felt like I took punch after punch this year, both professionally and personally, and once I felt like I got my feet back on solid ground another wave would crash down on me. So many times I felt like throwing in the towel, that I wouldn’t be able to make it another day. And you know what, it might have been awful, I might have looked and felt awful, but I showed up. Day after day to try to give others the best of me. I’ve come out on the other end of the madness of the past six months, and I am still standing. Maybe stronger now. Maybe not. But I’m here and I’m going to keep going.
5. Self-Care is Essential: And last, we all have the ability to burn out and burn out quickly if our tanks are depleted. Do yourself a favor and do at least one good thing for yourself a day. Take a walk, make a to-do list, take a hot bath, declutter your clothes, write down three things that you are thankful for, clear your head by doing some deep breathing for ten minutes. Do something. You can’t take care of anyone or anything else if you aren’t taking care of yourself. Don’t get me wrong, I have been blessed with so much, but if you read my last post, sometimes I run myself down to E and need to recharge. Don’t you?
With all that I’ve just said above, here’s to being 29 and going for it!
p.s. I hope I can take my own advice this year – I should probs bookmark this post
p.s.s. I hope you found this post relatable! Do you have any other takeaways from your twenties? Add to my list with a comment below!
p.p.s.s. The next post will be centered around statement earrings and a great promo for you!