This week I hit the elusive 26 years old and while I am reminded that I am closer to 30 than I am 20 and it makes me think back about the first half of my twenties.
In the last six years I have graduated university, left my retail job for more of a career, moved out of home, bought my own flat, made some fantastic memories with friends and family and generally been very happy.
I’ve definitely learnt the importance of family. Me and my mum used to fight a lot when I lived at home, and when we weren’t arguing I spent time in my bedroom like a sulky teenager/ young adult. When I moved out I was 21 I found that my relationship with my family – my mum specifically – was so much better. I made time to go and visit her and we would actually spend time together because we wanted to. Sure some friends may stick with you for a while but family are there forever.
Experiences are worth much more than anything else. Yes I spend a lot of money on material purchases from makeup and clothes to homewear and bedding, but give me the option of spending on an experience or physical things and I know what i’d choose. With experiences you create memories and they’re what you’re going to remember, not the bag you bought. I have some great memories of holidays, day trips, experience days and a whole host of other things and it’s one of the reasons I am pushing my travelling so much.
Don’t be afraid to take on challenges. I left retail in July 2014 for a job in marketing with limited knowledge about what I was actually doing. I did short courses, online quizzes and taught myself the basics and everything else I have learnt through the job. If I hadn’t have taken the leap of faith and just applied for jobs in the sector I may have never be where I am today.
Treasure the friends in your life. I am incredibly lucky that I am still friends with a group of seven girls who I know from school and we’re still close despite leaving school seven and a half years ago. We have survived people going off to uni, people getting married, having babies and more but they’re still some of the most special people in my life. It can become harder when you’re out of education to meet new people and make friends so treasure those who mean the world to you.
Do things which make you feel a little scared. This is certainly something I want to do more of, especially along the adrenaline junkie lines like skydiving/ cliff diving etc. But little things make a small difference for example going on holiday on my own and speed dating, both of these things made me feel truly uncomfortable but both left me with great experiences (one more than the other!)