20 Things You Should Say Goodbye To In Your Twenties


1. The image of an ideal life and an ideal partner, because neither exist, and chasing them will only distract you from the true contentment that comes from embracing what you do have.

2. The need to explain the decisions and choices you’ve made to people you don’t even care about.

3. The mindset that your career is the only way and the best way to define who you are.

4. The running list you keep in your head of the things you need to change about your body and your appearance. Maybe you’ll feel a little better when you lose ten pounds or whiten your teeth and that’s perfectly okay – but keeping a running tab in your head of everything that’s wrong with you will ruin you, because you’ll never be able to fully satisfy it. As soon as you fix one thing, you’ll find another to obsess over. We all do it, even those you consider the most beautiful, so it’s best to let the list burn out so you can focus on feeding your soul.

5. The belief that you can control everything in your life.

6. The desire to make everybody like you.

7. The thoughtless way you treat your body. Cheeseburgers and beer are delicious, but making these things a habit, rather than a treat, is only going to make you feel worse as you continue to do it.

8. The belief that if you stay with that guy or that girl long enough, they’ll change for you.

9. The idea that a romantic relationship is the solution to your struggle of trying to understand and/or find yourself.

10. The definition of a strong marriage as a relationship that is all passion all the time, with hardly any fighting.

11. The belief that everyone around you is happier than you and doing better than you, particularly when you feel it after being on social media.

12. The idea that letting go of a friendship in which you no longer have anything in common makes you a bad person. Sometimes people just grow apart, and forcing a relationship to last can actually cause more pain than simply letting it go.

13. Not getting enough sleep.

14. The idea that being too busy to have fun or spend time with family and friends is an admirable quality.

15. The quick tendency to judge someone who intimidates you, causes you envy, or is hard to understand.

16. Feeling guilty when you do things for yourself, whether that’s a solo vacation, a mental health day from work, a big but well-planned purchase, or a night in on the weekend after you’ve had a long and trying workweek.

17. The belief that you can please everyone – it’s not going to happen, and sometimes difficult choices need to be made. The best thing you can do is to do what you truly think is right.

18. The obsession with reliving your mistakes or your embarrassing moments over and over again. The best way to come to terms with a screwup is to keep showing up and keep working, rather than letting your fear of failure permanently paralyze you.

19. The idea that once you’re out of college, your education is finished.

20. Not paying attention to the loved ones you have right in front of you. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

Kim Quindlen

I’m a staff writer for Thought Catalog. I like comedy and improv. I live in Chicago. My Uber rating is just okay.

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