1. Learn to take enough time for yourself. It’s hard to say ‘no’ to people. For me, using that word when someone needed me felt like the ultimate betrayal. I was causing and adding pain where I should have been helping them. All the while, I was hurting myself. This year, take the time to practice the word ‘no.’ Even if you have to repeat thousands of times in the mirror, learn to set enough time for yourself by yourself. You don’t need to be around people 24/7. Let your soul breathe.
2. Learn that it’s okay not to have everything figured out. We expect 25 to be the age of incredulous knowledge. This is the age where we have to get our lives together. 25 is the age when we have to move out of our parent’s home, settle down and move up in our careers. I say, this year it’s time to destroy those notions. If you’re saving up for your first apartment, paying off student loans, and just trying to keep your head afloat in the midst of a heavy work project, trust me, you’re doing fine. No matter what age you turn, you’re never going to figure everything out. The world is ever-changing and so are you.
3. Learn how to start planning the future you’d like to see. Although you may not know what will happen three, four or five years from now, it’s always best to set goals. Knowing what you want out of life and chasing after them is just the first step in reaching for your dreamed future. Continue to learn and explore new avenues. Stay out of your comfort zone and think outside the box. Write down as many lists as you can. Work hard, but not because the outside world tells you. Work hard for you.
4. Learn that true love comes from within. Love and relationships are a never-ending factor when turning 25. We have to factor in who should we marry when to have children by and if we’re even ready to start a family. If you’re single, take the time to learn about your wants and needs. Understand who you are first before entering a committed relationship. Talk to your family, continue to hang out with friends and keep the hobbies you hold near and dear to yourself. If you’re in a relationship, continue to be yourself. Open your heart and tear down any walls you may have built. Enjoy your partner but remember to create your own life outside of them.
5. Learn how to save! Save! SAVE! We all love a good Starbucks coffee every now and then. We love ordering Long Islands from our local bars, buying new outfits for events and calling up Ubers and Lyfts each time we go out. But if you add all of those purchases, you will see how much you spend on a daily basis. This year, budget your earnings. Save money for emergencies or goals. There’s more to life than money, yes, but be smart about your finances.
6. Learn how to use your thoughts and opinions for good. This 25th year, when you’re listening to the news, reading entertainment blogs or scrolling on social media, remember to keep an open mind and be slow to judge and quick to listen. Do not create a harsher world than we already have.
7. Learn that you’re going to make dating mistakes. Every person you meet is not going to be your person. Understand that love comes in different forms, not just romantic. Enjoy your own unique personality and way of doing things. Enjoy your time by yourself. When we rush, we tend to create rose-colored glasses and not see the person for who they truly are. Know what you want for yourself first before diving in.
8. Learn how to start finding your passion. Dream and dream big. Then puts those dreams into action. Create a vision board and identify your dreams and goals. Network and meet new people who can help you along the way. Remember, when you make it to help others on their way, too.
9. Learn how to see the world beyond your backyard. If you have only one dollar or one million dollars in your wallet, try to go see the world. Step outside of your home and visit new places that make you step outside your comfort zone. Even if it’s just the new coffee shop down the street or traveling abroad, go and open your front door and start your adventure.
10. Finally, learn how to practice self-compassion. We have compassion for other people, places and things but why not for ourselves? Practice mindfulness and begin to heal your spirit. 25 is an age where you might have experienced heartbreak, criticism or even trauma. Learn to speak out against your pain, create daily affirmations and most importantly: love yourself.