Ok, I’ll admit: I’m only 27. Although my 28th birthday is right around the corner, I still have two more years left to trial-and-error my way through my 20’s—you know, before I actually have to get “serious.” Nevertheless, the 20-year-old me is not the 27-year-old me. I’ve changed. Here’s an idea of what you can expect to happen as you near your late 20’s:
1. You will lose friends
This year especially, I’ve seen the number of “friends” that I have dwindling. What I’m realizing is that it’s not a bad thing. Although it’s sad to see friendships fade, it’s a part of life. You can’t be friends with everyone, there’s just not enough time in a week. You should make the effort for those whose friendships you truly value, for those who you truly believe have your back. You absolutely shouldn’t be friends with those who make you unhappy.
Personally, I had so many friends who made me anxious, who didn’t reciprocate in the way that I wanted them to, who simply weren’t good friends. If they have a negative impact on your life, you don’t need them around. Let these people go, sooner than later. I believe to my core that the right friends will stick around.
2. You will value sleep
I used to be the girl who would pull all-nighters in college, manage to go to work off two hours of sleep, and still go out that same night. I am no longer that girl. I constantly feel tired, and when I haven’t had enough sleep I am moody, emotional, and grumpy. There is a direct correlation. Sleep is essential to my mental sanity, and I can hear my body yelling at me when I haven’t had enough. My general health is more important to me these days than anything else.
3. On that note, staying out until 6 a.m. will no longer be as fun
Unless it’s really an AWESOME party, there is no point in staying out until 6 a.m. Wasting money and feeling like hell on earth the next day is not fun. Yes, hangovers are a real thing now, and I’ve heard they only get worse. Save your energy for the nights that are worth it. No, not every Friday is worth it.
4. You will feel the wrath of wanderlust
I’ve always felt wanderlust. I was fortunate enough to have parents who took me on vacations throughout my life, and who sponsored a great deal of my adventures abroad. Now that it’s I who is working full-time, with limited vacation and limited funds, my case of wanderlust has only gotten worse. My advice: life is short, and you should travel as much as you can. Prioritize a plane ticket over an expensive jacket. It’s now or never!
5. You will genuinely enjoy spending time with yourself
As an extrovert, I have always been sensitive to FOMO. I hate missing out, and I like a good party. The older I get, the more I realize that sometimes missing out is great. There is nothing wrong with staying home alone on a Friday night, or going to the movies by yourself. Do the things that make you happy—whether you have to do them alone, or not!
6. You will most likely not be financially stable
Perhaps some of my more responsible friends have it figured out, but for the most part we’re all still a mess. In my case, I still have little to no idea how to properly budget myself. My credit card is like a toy that gives me anxiety. At the end of the day, I’m pretty broke and continue to be burdened by student debt. I’m hoping that my late 20s will be my time to shine in the personal finances department.
7. You still probably won’t listen to your parents, but you should
I tend to roll my eyes when people tell me this, but I know they’re right. Your parents have way more experience than you do. As opposed to repeating their mistakes, try listening to them for a change, and learning from their past. You’ll be a step ahead in the game of life.
8. You will have a better idea of what you want to do in life
I have spent most of my 20s all over the place, wondering what exactly I should do and contemplating my path. I’m one of those people who’s interested in a ton of things, and I can envision a hundred careers for myself. I’m constantly welcoming change and a new challenge with open arms. I’ve lived here, I’ve lived there. I’ve tried this, I’ve tried that. Although I haven’t completely figured it out, I’m getting closer. Even if you’ve hated every single job that you’ve had in the past, you’re then checking it off your list in a process of elimination, and ultimately figuring out what it is that you actually enjoy doing.