Thought Catalog

21 More Things I’ve Learned In My 20s

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1. Take advantage of that open bar…unless you’re someone like me who has the tolerance of a four-year-old. Damn my genetics.

2. There are going to be good and bad people wherever you go. You can’t run forever.

3. Imagining your life as a sit-com makes 98% of bad situations better. Some days just f-cking suck. So pretend it’s Christmas.

4. Set your expectations low and your standards high (especially on dating). 

5. Seeing and admitting your flaws is important. Mine? Extreme fickleness, uncontrollable anxiety, being overambitious and too self-critical, talking bullsh-t, overcommitment, blah blah blah. But self-reflection is key for personal change. What are yours?

6. If someone cares about you, they’ll make time for you. If they don’t, then they won’t. But with that said, no one can make time for you all the time. 

7. Club Monaco dresses and Chanel makeup are not good reasons to be broke. But plane tickets, traveling, and new experiences are. 

8. Knowing when and how to sound like a pretentious asshole is useful. But so is knowing your place.

9. There’s a huge difference between loving someone and being in love. And having a tumultuous and volatile love life is really not something to be proud of, although it can be fun at times…

10. If you’re going to give, then just give. Don’t expect anything in return.

11. Alone time is crucial. Dates with yourself are the best. Go sit at your favorite café for another hour. Have that bubble bath. Take the long way home.

12. Karma is very, very real.

13. Listen to advice, even if you don’t like it or it sounds ridiculous to you. (ex. “You should really try a yoga class.” “Are you kidding me…” Well, today, I tried a yoga class. And I liked it.)

14. Not everyone is going to like you. And that is perfectly okay.

15. Killing with kindness is approximately 99% more effective than being a bitch.

16. Being happy doesn’t mean never being sad.

17. The more people you know, the better. Keep meeting strangers and talking.

18. Every single person has a story. Every single person can teach you something new about something you know nothing about. And every single person can teach you something new about yourself. You just have to be open to it.

19. If you want to go to somewhere, then go. Be reasonable, and be smart. But the longer you think about it, and the longer you hold back, the more you are going to hate everyone around you, including yourself. You can’t wait for things to happen. 

20. You really cannot change people, no matter how hard you try. 

21. But you can change yourself. TC mark

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  • http://elizabethmerrittabbott.wordpress.com elizabethmerrittabbott

    #16 is so true and so hard fo rme to remember sometimes. great list.

  • http://heartofablonde.com Molly

    Loved this.

    I think we might be the same person.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikki.mcgillicuddy Nikki McGillicuddy

    Great little article, nothing groundbreaking, but still useful. :)

  • http://twitter.com/geology_rocks Haley F (@geology_rocks)

    Man these 20-something advice articles need to stop. Take a bubble bath? Talk to strangers? Come on.

    • Alex

      The clue is in the title. “21 More Things I’ve Learned In My 20s.” if you can’t fathom what it’ll be about from reading the title, I’m worried. I presume you can, therefore DO NOT read it.

  • http://krymeariver.com krymeariver

    As usual a fantastic article/blog post. So fantastic. As a 24 year old I am learning to live all of these things

  • http://gravatar.com/nishantjn nishantjn

    OMG did you really learn that? OMG that’s so cool, and you’re so wise. Don’t beat yourself up. This! #4, 9 and 17 are so me! I wonder if I will ever find true love.

    How about a #22?

    22. Stating the obvious in clever, self-deprecating sentences.

    Now maybe you can say I need to learn #8, but I find #22 to be more useful.

    • J

      Damn, bitch, you’re so lucky and enlightened. Some people thrive off of short, concise statements. Whatever helps them get through their day. No need to be a dick.

    • http://jude-prescott.blogspot.com Jude

      Here’s the Obvious. Troll Harder.

  • http://theroaringtwentiez.wordpress.com theroaringtwentiez

    Reblogged this on theroaringtwentiez and commented:
    Fantastic List!

  • http://dysfunctionalautofocus.wordpress.com dysfunctionalautofocus

    Reblogged this on and commented:
    Take a look at this!! :)

  • http://pantsareuseless.wordpress.com maghennicole

    THANK YOU

  • Amanda

    5. Seeing and admitting your flaws is important. Mine? Extreme fickleness, uncontrollable anxiety, being overambitious and too self-critical, talking bullsh-t, overcommitment, blah blah blah. But self-reflection is key for personal change. What are yours?

    We could be twins on this one, except for being overambitous. I would add lazy (just the opposite!) over sensitive and a very bad worrier, I have actually worried that I wan’t worried about something (true story!)

    8. Knowing when and how to sound like a pretentious asshole is useful. But so is knowing your place.

    When or in what situation is sounding like a pretentious asshole useful?

    Lots of good stuff in that list. Certainly things I wish I would have learned in my 20’s. My motto is to never stop learning.

  • http://cashelln.wordpress.com Nora Cashell

    This was so nice to read. :)

  • eyy

    Err I felt like #20 contradicts with the entire message of this post.

    • Bill

      “err” is just the most annoying condescending little word on the planet. shut it.

  • http://intheforgotten.wordpress.com kaitovillar

    Reblogged this on In the forgotten..

  • kevin masc

    so fuckin true. This is the best in ”things i have learned in 20s” genre articles. I agree with almost all of them and confused abt some of them. I’m just 21. Got a Lot to come.

  • http://justjanelle.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/2091/ Just Janelle

    […] more at https://thoughtcatalog.com/2012/21-more-things-ive-learned-in-my-20s/#0qYbvCjbuhwqeYtU.99 Like this:LikeBe the first to like this. Leave a […]

  • http://omlsjoiedevivre.wordpress.com/2012/08/14/21-more-things-ive-learned-in-my-20s-thought-catalog/ 21 More Things I’ve Learned In My 20s | Thought Catalog « OML's Joie de Vivre

    […] 21 More Things I’ve Learned In My 20s | Thought Catalog. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. Filed under Uncategorized | Leave a comment […]

  • http://omlsjoiedevivre.wordpress.com lbv426

    Reblogged this on OML's Joie de Vivre and commented:
    My personal favorites include
    4. Set your expectations low and your standards high (especially on dating).
    6. If someone cares about you, they’ll make time for you. If they don’t, then they won’t. But with that said, no one can make time for you all the time.
    15. Killing with kindness is approximately 99% more effective than being a bitch.
    18. Every single person has a story. Every single person can teach you something new about something you know nothing about. And every single person can teach you something new about yourself. You just have to be open to it.

  • Mo

    I don’t understand how #4 ever makes sense: ” Set your expectations low and your standards high (especially on dating).”

    Like huh

    • http://jude-prescott.blogspot.com Jude

      You can date someone who checks off on every box on your list (good job, good family, straight teeth, all of his/her teeth)…but when you actually go out with them, don’t expect a fantastic-al date.

  • http://soundbodysoundmindblog.wordpress.com katefa28

    Reblogged this on Sound Body, Sound Mind.

  • http://thescaryyear.com thenextlapp

    Reblogged this on The Scary Year and commented:
    Love this!

  • http://probablyshouldntbuythisdomainname.org Surly McSurleberg-Surlington IV

    In light of the steady flow of these ‘things you learn in your 20’s/shit changes when you’re iny your 20’s/hey guys I’m 20’ articles, it’d be nice to see more things from 30, 40, 50 year olds. I’m of the feeling that you still don’t know shit in your 20’s, it’s a tightrope walk between being “cray”…wait, nobody says “cray” anymore…between being “ratchet” and slowly adopting the routines of “Responsible Adult Life”. Every epiphany one has about life is likely to be wiped out by the next drink/drug binge or just by next months epiphany. *shrugs*

  • CL

    i really like this.

  • Devi

    Thank you Evelyn Cheung for putting my thoughts into a perfect light and inspiring writing.. Love it.

  • ohmisslouise

    #7 is my mantra

  • http://stephanieyansun.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/46-things-ive-learned-in-my-20s-ryan-oconnell/ 46 Things I’ve Learned In My 20s – Ryan O’Connell | STEPHANIEYANSUN

    […] more at https://thoughtcatalog.com/2012/25-things-ive-learned-in-my-twenties/; https://thoughtcatalog.com/2012/21-more-things-ive-learned-in-my-20s/ Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like […]

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