What I’d Tell My 25-Year-Old Self: Advice From Your 30-Something Sisters|
When I was 18, I had a plan, however cliché, for how my life would go. I would meet my husband-to-be in college, and soon after graduation, we would get married, buy a house with a white-picket fence and have 2.5 kids – all by the time I was 25.
Fast-forward to 25-year-old me, without a husband, without the white-picket fence, and without kids, and not not happy about it. My life plan then was starkly different: I was all about a career in magazines, and wanted to be the next Jane Pratt, if not work for her.
Now that I’m 33, I’m married (though still without a white-picket fence or kids) and work as the editor of a web startup.
I’m not that far removed from my 20s, yet it seems so long ago, and I can’t even believe I was the person I was when I was 18. The point is, if I’ve learned anything in my 33 years on this planet, it’s that life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans. If I could, that’s exactly what I would tell my 25-year-old self: Relax. Don’t try to figure everything out, because things don’t always work out they way you planned. And that’s not a bad thing.
In fact, that’s a common question asked during our Office Hours chats here at Levo, and I always find the responses incredibly insightful. Some are hopeful, others are tinged with regret, but they always make me wonder about life and how it leads us all in such different directions.
And so with that in mind and the New Year right around the corner, I thought I’d ask some of my fellow 30-somethings what they would tell their 25-year-old selves, and pass that on to you in an effort to provide some year-end advice for 2013. Here’s what they had to say. (And who knows? When I’m 40, I could have a completely different outlook on life – though probably still not a life plan.)
What 30-Somethings Know
“I’d tell my 25-year-old self to protect her hearing better during all those late nights in clubs and at concerts. Left me with tinnitus, which will never go away.” – Iris S.
“Don’t undervalue yourself when negotiating salary — you are worth every penny and then some!” – Lauren O.
“Appreciate your parents, grandparents. Enjoy time with them while they’re active and healthy. Travel often. Forgive easily.” – Rachel G.
“Love your body! In five or 10 years, you’d kill to get this one back.” – Debbie S.
“Don’t be in such a hurry to live life. Enjoy the present without putting pressure on yourself about the future. And enjoy that 25-year-old metabolism while you still have it.” – Elizabeth M.
“I’d say, ‘Stop saying you’re tired. For one, you have no idea what tired is, and second, it annoys everyone within earshot who has children. That said, sleep while you can because after 30 you’ll be the one wanting to slap sleepy 25-year-olds upside the head.“ – Cynthia R.
“Spend the money on a house… not the wedding.” – Jennifer P.
“Have faith in yourself and know that when it comes to anything in life, you’re your own best advocate, so don’t shortchange yourself!” – Serena K.
What’s the best piece of life advice you’ve ever received? Tell us in the comments!
Image courtesy of Teen Vogue