Our twenties are a special time where we’re no longer too young to wait for the next day for our life goals; at the same time, not too old to worry too much about the future and regret what we have done in the past.
If you haven’t started to set goals for your life yet, do it now. However, if you have done that, you probably stumbled across this question already:
“How should I invest my time?”
1. Managing Risks
Your twenties are the best time to take risks. But most people take risks with the mindset of gambling. I was there too. A better vocabulary to use here is managing risks. Go ahead to do what is risky, but with two rules. (1) Don’t die, because it means game over. So, don’t risk what you can’t afford to lose. (2) Maximize the return with the risk you take. This basically means only takes manageable risk with a big potential return.
2. Building Constructive Habits
40% of our day-to-day activities are habits and repetitive routines and almost all behaviors are habitual. Being conscious in building good habits is the best way to excel in life, at the same time, being careless with your bad routines is the guaranteed path to ruin your life.
3. Creating a Winning Environment
Have you ever experienced that you’re becoming lazier after staying at home for a while? And you’re more productive when you’re in the library or coffee shop? You get demotivated when you hang out with a certain group of friends? And you are super pumped-up when you hang out with another? We’re shaped by our environment. Invest time in creating an environment that makes winning easier for you.
4. Committing to the Finish Line
Passion is overrated. Commitment is the key. Stop dabbling. Stop hopping from one job to another. (And stop starting a startup without finishing.) Commit in mastering skills that put food on the table. I don’t think working 9 to 5 or being an entrepreneur matter here. They are just a title. Instead of caring so much for the title on your name card, commit to the work.
5. Polishing Your Definition of Success
Success is a big word with many different meanings for different people. Some think of success as personal excellence, some think of it as money and fame, some think of it as a commitment to their craft, and some think of it as love and contribution. Invest time to figure out what success means for you. (Hint: it changes.)
6. Being Patient
Before my twenties, I was rushing to accomplish everything I ever wanted in life. I risked a lot, I lost a lot, at the end of the day, I get nothing done. There is a long journey ahead. The next time you find yourself comparing, complaining, dwelling, rushing, ask yourself, “Am I losing hope? Or am I being impatience?”
7. Learning the Art of Hustling
“You realize that you will never be the best-looking person in the room. You’ll never be the smartest person in the room. You’ll never be the most educated, the most well-versed. You can never compete on those levels. But what you can always compete on, the true egalitarian aspect to success, is hard work. You can always work harder than the next guy.”
— Casey Neistat
(If you don’t know who he is, here is a link to his Youtube Channel)
8. Practicing Self-awareness
Invest a great amount of time in understanding yourself. Figure out your values, your strengths, and your weaknesses. The world (and the previous generations) taught us to go after greatness. But many missed the point that greatness is within ourselves.
9. Being Comfortable with Uncertainties
There are so many fears in this journey we called Life. Your twenties are just the beginning. It’s hard and uncomfortable to lose the sense of security and certainty (from our parents) we’ve always had. However, it’s the best time to get comfortable with it before it’s too late.
10. Working in Constraints
Having more freedom doesn’t always make us happier. And the hard fact is that we can never eliminate the constraints. We are like a fish in an aquarium. The size of the aquarium dictates the freedom we have, and some of us see it as our constraints. To grow, we need a bigger aquarium. Unfortunately, what most people are trying to do is breaking the aquarium. Without it, you’re a dead fish.