25 Tiny (But Critical) Things You Need To Unlearn In Your Twenties

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1.

That your dream job will be easy and effortless.

2. 

That anxiety and/or depression are things you should be ashamed about.

3. 

Or that you can ‘fix’ your mental illness by simply ‘trying to be happier.’

4.

That relationships should be completely smooth, simple, and unchallenging every second of every day.

5.

Or that if someone’s treating you poorly in a relationship, that it’s somehow your job to stay and fix them.

6.

That there is an exact right time to get engaged, married, or to start a family.

7. 

That your friendships will always be as easy as they were in college.

8.

That success can only be measured by a corner office or an extremely high salary.

9. 

That being too busy for anything besides work is somehow admirable.

10.

That getting five hours of sleep every night is totally healthy.

11.

That it’s normal to be at a job that is stressful to the point of affecting your health.

12. 

That friendship is just about telling them what they want to hear, instead of what they need to hear.

13.

That you are supposed to explain and defend your choices and decisions to other people, instead of just doing what you know is right for you regardless of what other people have to say.

14. 

That failure is something to be ashamed about (when in reality, it’s something that you learn from and grow from).

15.

That making poor diet choices right now is fine because you’ll fix it ‘someday’ when you have more money or more time or more everything else.

16.

That any issue between you and your roommate will just ‘work itself out’ and that there’s no need to discuss it face-to-face.

17. 

That you have to stay friends with someone who only brings toxic energy into your life.

18.

That it’s too late to switch careers and go after what truly makes you feel alive.

19.

That putting yourself down is the only way to make other people feel more comfortable.

20.

That your education stops after college.

21.

That badmouthing others will make you feel better about yourself and your own failings.

22.

That you can’t make a difference as one single person.

23. 

That a kind word to a friend or even a stranger will have no effect on turning their day around.

24.

That you’re the only person in the world who feels crippling self-doubt, anxiety, insecurity, uncertainty, and every other uncomfortable and paralyzing feeling that comes with being a complicated human.

25.

That happiness can only be found with the attainment of things in the future, instead of just finding it right here, right now, no matter how far you are from what you think you need to be happy. TC mark

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.

Trace the scars life has left you. It will remind you that at one point, you fought for something. You believed.

“You are the only person who gets to decide if you are happy or not—do not put your happiness into the hands of other people. Do not make it contingent on their acceptance of you or their feelings for you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if someone dislikes you or if someone doesn’t want to be with you. All that matters is that you are happy with the person you are becoming. All that matters is that you like yourself, that you are proud of what you are putting out into the world. You are in charge of your joy, of your worth. You get to be your own validation. Please don’t ever forget that.” — Bianca Sparacino

Excerpted from The Strength In Our Scars by Bianca Sparacino.

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