Lately I have been thinking about my age. Not thinking I am old or feeling close to my expiration date. But I’ve been thinking about habits and trying to make some changes. I read somewhere that it takes 66 days or 66 times of doing something to change a habit… not a particularly easy effort.
It got me to thinking about habits I formed in my 20’s, the decade in which so much of my adulthood was shaped.
If I could go back and give my 20-something self advice that I would actually accept, here are a few things I would say…
1. Don’t fret. Truly, truly, today has enough worries of its own. You don’t need to worry about tomorrow or next week because they will arrive soon enough and take care of themselves. What other people think of you, how to handle an upcoming situation, worrying will not change a thing. The thing will happen and will usually be just fine. You can avoid wrinkles on your forehead from unnecessary fretting later in life.
2. Go easy on yourself. There is no need to beat yourself up (figuratively) for making a mistake or for saying the “wrong” thing. Most people do they best they can most of the time — and that includes you. Be realistic, don’t be a jerk, but be gentle with how you view yourself.
3. Develop good habits. Don’t wait until later. Decisions you make now about how you eat, whether or not you exercise, whether to make reading a part of your daily routine, and most other habits, will stick with you. It doesn’t get easier to develop good habits as you age. And developing them while you’re young provides more time to reap the benefits.
4. Stand tall. You are a tall woman, tall enough to touch the ground at 5′ 9″. There is no need to stand on one leg with the other bent to appear shorter. And no need to feel “less than” because you’re big. Be proud of who you are and show it with your posture. Wear high heels when the time is right. It doesn’t get easier to start later!
5. Consider gratitude. Life will bring challenges your way. People will disappoint you, and your heart will be broken a few times. But you will also have many successes, exciting opportunities, and your heart will be filled with love. Try to consider what you are grateful for every day; gratitude for what you have, for your relationships, for simple things like sunshine. It will help from falling into and remaining in negativity.
I am sure there are many more tidbits my 20-something self would benefit from but these are the few that first came to mind. What would you tell your young self, your 20-something self or your teenage self?
Make it a good week!