10 Things I've Learned in my 20s

My aunt once said to me "the twenties are hard," and I couldn't agree more. Fresh out of college, you think you have it all figured out, then you realize how little you know once you're out in the real world. What a humbling moment that is.

Once your mid-twenties hit, you go through so much change and transformation -- trying to figure out how you fit into the world. Learning how to balance working, finances, and figuring out how a 401k works.

As I've recently reached the last year of my 20s, I finally feel like I'm almost to the other side. The upper 20s are spent working to define your personal style, choosing your friends wisely, investing in yourself, and most importantly -- realizing what didn't work for you and how to adjust accordingly.

Below are 10 things that I've learned in my 20s that I wish I would have known 10 years ago! 

  1. Nothing is worth it if you aren't happy. This includes jobs, relationships, and large savings accounts.
  2. Not every minute of your day needs to be productive. I remember when my boss at my first design job told me this after I was getting so antsy after completing projects without having another one to start right away.
  3. Don't chase after people, their effort will reveal their level of interest in you. So much wasted time and effort! My best friend, Allie, and I have maintained our friendship since 8th grade despite living 3,500 miles apart for many of those years.
  4. You don't owe anyone an explanation behind your decisions. At the end of the day, you're the one that has to live with them.
  5. Boundaries are the key to healthy relationships. Set boundaries with yourself, your family, your friendships, and your work.
  6. Invest in quality over quantity. This includes choosing friends, your wardrobe, and the food you consume.
  7. The importance of dressing well. Not only will you feel more confident, but others will take you more seriously.
  8. Be your own advocate and stand up for yourself. You know yourself best and it's important to always have your own back.
  9. Stress affects the whole body. Learn stress-management techniques and make them part of your daily routine.
  10. Accept who you are and embrace it. This is where true confidence comes from.

What's something you've learned about yourself recently?