Things I’ve learned since turning 24

That your body is yours and it’s not going anywhere

Through my life, I’ve had an on-off relationship with my body. Sometimes I’ve treated it badly, other times it put me in the dog house, we’ve struggled to find a harmony. But I think as you get past your teens you realise that you can’t change everything. The constant comparing and competing with friends and foes finishes. Peace starts to creep in. And it feels super weird.

I’m not a slim lady and to feel good, or even just not bad, about my body is a revolution. To look at diet adverts and to simply roll my eyes and ignore them rather than consider them feels like a mutiny. Realising that this body is the single thing that has got me through everything and one of the few things in life that you have to rely on has been a big hurdle that I hope everyone goes through in their 20s.

How to deal with negative influences such as relatives and passing friends

From the uncle who gives you this spiel every time you meet: “Oh, so you’re doing a degree? At that university? In that department? How are you ever going to get a job? Har har har!” to the friend who can’t take a breath to ask about your day before throwing themselves into a flurry of how their day was much worse than yours – your care for what these people have to say seems to decrease with each year. And it’s extremely freeing.

That self-care is important

Teenagers are resilient, you have to give them that. The break-ups, the emotions, the crushes, the drama – everything’s going on and it’s all going so fast that by the time one issues has finished another one has arised. Teenagers are a confusion of feelings giving themselves no time for rest and recuperations. Us twenty-odd year olds however. As the pace of life slows down, where we get into comfortable jobs, whittle down our friendship groups to the ones who matter, and try to only involve ourselves in meaningful relationships, our time for recovery in almost endless. The little things add up. Checking in with yourself and making sure you’re happy with all your choices, rather than just following them through for the sake of it (or for the sake of someone else) is something I think all insightful people do and emotionally successful twenty-odd year olds do. Knowing when to reach out and bring in those close to you to what you’re going through matters in times of need.

Sticking it out

With every choice I make, I feel like sticking it out is always crucial to seeing results and possibly the thing that is hardest about big decisions. Whether it’s to find a new job, take up another hobby, see a friend more, drink more water or any of these self-improvements, consistency is key and making the things that make you happy a priority. Pushing yourself sometimes to do something that doesn’t seem worthwhile in the short term but you know will be in the long term sucks, but it’s all for the greater good in the end.

 

What have you learned through your teens, twenties, thirties, forties? Let me know what I have to come!

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