1. Always know that change is an option. Many people, myself included, start down a path and think that since I committed to that path, it’s the only path for me. Don’t get caught in that thought process. If a choice (career, location, relationship, etc) doesn’t feel right down the road, know you can make a new one. It may be uncomfortable at first, but you can make it through (and likely for the better).
2. Get sleep. Don’t think because you can run on 3 hours of sleep that you should. It has effects on your mind and body long-term.
3. Go see your favorite musical acts when they are young, together, and/or alive. And not selling out to fuck you price arena tours.
4. Make sure that if you have a relationship with someone you actually nail down the long-term goals and agree on them… Like kids? How exactly will that work? Marriage? Find your deal breakers and take them seriously… From 20-30 the time really flies and you don’t want to miss it.
5. Drama is a success killer. If anyone (ANYONE!!) has a habit of starting drama, drop them from your life now. No one is so important that they are worth being dragged down into that pit.
6. Eat twice as many vegetables as you are now. I know you think you’re eating enough, but you’re not. And drink some water, for hydro’s sake!
7. If you don’t want to get married to the person you’re with, tell them. It’s far better to have some hurt feelings now than to have severe regrets and a lot of legal fees later. Just listen to your gut.
8. Have a plan. Doesn’t matter what the plan is and it doesn’t matter if it changes, but make a plan. Don’t just go through life day-to-day aimlessly doing what feels good in the moment. Decide what you want and go get it. You will stumble (some people will call it failure) but as long as you keep moving forward, you’re in better shape than most.
9. Protect your hearing! Wear earplugs at concerts and don’t always crank up the music in your car.
10. Seek out and/or retain social friendships. College is over, and you probably won’t see a lot of those people very much anymore. Don’t be afraid to look around for meetup groups or events in your area to meet new people.
11. Let’s add being politically active as well. I didn’t start caring about politics until my mid-twenties, and I regret not having become more engaged early on. Regardless of how you plan on voting, check out vote.org if you are an American citizen and aren’t registered or to check if you are too. Might be a little late at this point in the game, but I’m gonna shamelessly plug it anyway.
12. Cultivate your hobbies and find new ones. Lots of things can make us happy, but just consuming media gets old. Being creative can be really fulfilling.
13. Don’t marry crazy regardless of how good the sex is.
14. Take chances. Someone you fancy? Ask them out. Want to try a new education path or hobby? Do it. Have trouble with anxiety/self-worth/past crappy experiences? Get a good therapist and work on it. Your 20s are the time you get to figure out who you are.
15. Live your life the way you want to, not the way your parents tell you is “best”, and not the way society “expects” you to. Unless that actually lines up with what you want. I spent way too much time doing what I thought were the “right” things or the “best” things and I was actually miserable.
16. Tell people to fuck off when they have bullshit in your way. Mean it.
17. Learn about self-care: nutrition, exercise, mental health. Stay fit enough to avoid problems later.
18. Don’t lend money to friends or family.
19. Learn good work ethic and develop good habits: be clean, show up on time, be rested, etc.
20. Take risks in your career. Apply yourself and work hard for positions out of your league. Be bold, be social, and network.
21. Date, date, DATE! I have some friends who are in their late 20’s and it’s a struggle to have them try to meet people. Not saying it’s pivotal to date, but it’s good to know how to work with other people who’ve been in relationships. As well as recovering from a breakup seems like a good life experience prior to 30.
22. Learn how to get along with people. Emotional intelligence is a good starting point.
23. If you yearn for adventure, go now. You are young, your body is strong, and your obligations are few. Go now. It’s so much easier to drop everything in your life for a 6-month hiking trip and then slide back into regular life when you’re 25 than when you’re 35.
24. Stop fucking the wrong people!! Nothing derails your life like having the wrong people in it! This can be said of friends too. Don’t waste your time on shitty friends and definitely don’t fuck any of them.
25. Learn how to cook and eat healthy. You’ll save money and your body will appreciate it.
26. Learn how to budget. Even if it’s just a simple Excel or Google Sheets file with one column of income, and one of expenses. When you see everything you buy in a month next to each other, you realize where you can save money pretty well.
27. Moisturize. Or you’ll crack faster.
28. Exercise. Even lightly once a week. Just do something. Stretch too, yoga is great. Some won’t try it because of the stigma, but just do it at home with Youtube videos or something.
29. Get check-ups. Dentistry, vision, medical, therapy if you need it. Just do it. Once a year minimum. You could catch something serious early without even knowing you have it.
30. Everybody has regrets. You can’t avoid them all. However, take chances, do things, and don’t stagnate.