7 Life Lessons Your 20s Will Teach You


As I look back at life, I see strings of lessons, life left me. And I am glad I learnt it. Here is what life taught in my twenties and like a diligent student, I took note and learnt.

1. Self-forgiveness is the first step towards all healing: Every time we are hurt, we hold something against someone. But I learnt that the one person I am actually unforgiving towards is- myself. We somewhere believe that holding against and not letting go will make the other person suffer. However in reality, we are holding a sack of sand on our back on a rainy night. Nothing happens to anyone, the sack gets heavier and we get tied down. The first act towards healing is forgiving oneself for trusting someone enough to break us. Once we forgive ourselves, we can extend it to the person who has hurt us. I learnt everything begins with me.

2. Nothing can ever replace Self Love: This is a lesson, life taught me many different ways, until I sat down and made it my priority. When life offered me with feelings of anxiety, not being worth enough and unhappiness for a long time, I knew something was terribly wrong. I lived with the feelings of “something wrong with me.”Of course it reflected in every sphere of life. Then I learnt how self love can turn everything around. Thanks to Louise L Hay’s, “You can Heal Your Life.” I learnt that when I loved myself; I do not need relationships or anything that would not match with what I feel for myself. With self love, self respect and self care came as a gift. And when anyone loves and respect oneself, you are nothing less than phenomenal.

3. Love everyone, but very few are worth a fight: This took some time to register. Loving people is a good thing. It keeps one fresh and energetic. However when you stand to fight, it takes a lot of time, energy and focus. It is very important to know which battle to fight and which to let go. Even if you began one, it is always okay to leave it even mid way when you realize, it’s not going anywhere. Be wise. Don’t wait there to prove anything. Choose yourself, your sanity and self-respect. You are your best choice. Choose yourself always.

4. Never sell your sword: Paulo Coelho says, “Love everyone. But never sell your sword.” This is one of the finest lessons of life. It is okay to be kind and compassionate, but if ever someone invades your territory and threaten your well-being, use your sword. Be a warrior, who knows that at times some battles needs to be fought fiercely. And fight it till the end. Remember nothing is worth more than your emotional and physical well-being.

5. Mean your words: Language is the most carelessly used commodity available to humankind. However, it is still a very sacred one. It takes a lot of courage to mean what you say. But once you do, you taste blood. It takes your self-esteem and confidence to a new level. And most importantly you start trusting yourself anew. It works magic. It did for me.

6. Learn to ask for help: Asking for help was almost a taboo for me. I remember that one night, I was 22 years then. I woke up at night. I just walked up and down in my room, sleep wouldn’t come and I knew I was not able to handle my ever sinking moods. The next day the first thing I did was visit a psychologist. That was one of the best decisions I ever took. She helped me to see through my situation and it worked all fine later. Sometimes, when we can’t manage something, it is perfectly okay to call someone who can help us. And the golden rule of life is, no one can help until you ask for it or accept it.

7. Choose your best story: We are all the stories which we repeatedly tell ourselves. In my late teens and early twenties, I had the pattern of attracting men who would not honor who I was. However, once I realized it, I worked on it. I chose men who would respect and honor me and I let go my part of the earlier story. Every story that comes into our lives has a purpose. I acknowledged its purpose, which taught me self love and self forgiveness and I created the second story of wonderful people which now I chose to live with. Choose your best story. It will become your reality.

image – Paul Jarvis