There are certain things you must know and implement in your 20s if you want to have a successful life and I’ll be revealing them to you in this article. But first, what would you consider a successful life?
Success in life is different from success in your career and while that is included, success is not limited to monetary accomplishments. Living a successful life means achieving your vision of a good life and attaining those set goals that result in the future you have planned for yourself.
That being said, success is defined by you. Your definition or vision of success, depending on your priorities and values will differ from most people. I like to see it this way- A successful life includes having a successful career and relationship, great mental, and physical health and overall fulfilment with the things and people in your life. You should be able to look back 20, 30, or 50 years from now without regrets.
Achieving this requires planning and focus. Think of any successful man or woman you know, they seem to have something in common. They all started early and those who didn’t wish they had. So you need to start preparing for that future you want now that you’re in your 20s.
Why your 20’s?
Well, you’re young, full of energy, you’ve got lots of time on your hands to make silly mistakes, learn one or two crucial lessons, get your head on straight and set your life in the right direction. This is your defining decade and I’ll tell you this for free, your 30-40-year-old self will thank you for the decisions, steps and changes you’re about to make.
Without further delay, here’s a list of things you must know in your 20s for a successful life.
11 Things You Must Know In Your 20s For A Successful Life
Discover Your Passion
If you haven’t paid much attention to your passions during your teens, your 20s would be a great time to start discovering and harnessing your passions. Start by identifying those things that motivate you. What are your interests, and what do you enjoy spending time on?. Knowing where your passion lies is essential as it will help you discover your purpose.
This in turn will determine where and with whom you spend your time, energy and resources, giving you a sense of focus and direction. For example, if you’re interested in arts and aesthetics, you can pursue a career that allows you to express your creativity, like photography, songwriting, product/graphic design etc.
Write Down Your Goals
Your 20’s define your professional and personal life more than any other decade, so you should set goals for each aspect of your life. Be practical, write down your long-term goals, where you see yourself 10-20 years from now, the kind of job you will be working on and the people you would want to be associated with.
Once you’ve done that, go ahead and write several short-term goals that will lead you in the direction of your long-term goal. And for each short-term goal, make sure to be as realistic as possible, have a solid plan and always set a deadline. For example, if one of your long-term goals is to own a tech company, then your short-term goals should include, seeking professional qualifications in related fields and looking for ways to come up with startup capital.
Build foundational Life Skills
Aside from acquiring and mastering hard skills specific to your chosen career path, you also need to build up foundational life skills that will help in your journey to success, irrespective of the industry you find yourself.
Some of these essential life skills include:
- Communication and interpersonal skills
- Problem-solving and decision-making skills
- Critical and creative thinking
- Emotional intelligence (self-awareness and empathy)
- Self-control and self-discipline
In addition to these, know that different life skills will be more important than others at different stages of your life. At school you’ll need to learn study skills, when applying for a job, you’ll need employability skills, when you start a family, you’ll need parenting skills and of course, organising skills, patience and good temper.
Be Open To Different Paths
While it’s important to discover your purpose on time and be focused on one path. It’s also okay to try out different paths. You have a decade to run experiments and figure out what works and what does not. When you’re 20, you have the advantage of time and strength, so use it well. Be flexible and try out new things
For example, you may start out chasing a career in the healthcare sector and suddenly realize that you’re not cut out for such jobs. Or you may even develop a desire for digital marketing. Sometimes life goes in the opposite direction of your plans and you must learn to embrace change, and be open to new opportunities.
Be intentional about the kind of company you keep, because it will determine how well you’ll do and how far you’ll go in life. Now is the time to cut off meaningless friendships and start building mutually benefiting relationships. Learn to strategically network with others who can help you and who you can help in return, as this is key to career advancement.
If you want to get to the top of the professional ladder fast, networking with the right people is what you must do. But first, you need to ask yourself, who should you be meeting? How can they help you reach your career goals and what skills or talents can you offer them?
Learn Time And Money Management
You indeed have time on your side, but it’s also true that time lost never comes back. That is why you must learn effective time management. Start by cutting off useless activities from your daily routine, create a daily schedule with room for productive working or learning and of course leisure time.
Alongside time management, you also need to learn money management. If you want your future self to be financially independent, then now is the time to cultivate good savings and investment habits. Learn to create a budget, track your expenses, automate your savings and invest in low-risk businesses with good ROI.
Learn Marketable Skills
Your 20’s should be spent learning marketable skills that are relevant in whatever industry you’re entering and gathering relevant work experience. For example, if you’re into business or administration, skills like creating a business plan, negotiation, presentation skills and basic computer skills should be a must-have.
Aside from these, you should also cultivate other marketable skills that will help improve your chances of getting a job, irrespective of the industry. Examples of such skills include oral and written communication, leadership, teamwork, collaboration, problem-solving and idea generation.
Find A Balance Between Work Time And Personal Time
Sometimes we get caught up in the daily rat race of survival. Trying to get things done as fast as we can, organising meetings, booking appointments, chasing clients, trying to meet deadlines, that we forget to take care of ourselves. You must find a balance between work and personal time. Create the time to hang out with your friends and loved ones, have fun and enjoy life.
More importantly, create time to rest. Your body needs it to function well. For example, you can decide to work for 12 hours daily, 6 hours of active work, another six hours of routine activities, spend time with friends or family and still have your normal 6-8 hours of sleep. Or you can work as many hours as you like for 5 days of the week and rest for 2 days.
Either way, make sure you take care of your mental and physical health and find a balance that works for you. To achieve this you’ll need to set up good habits, which brings us to our next point.
Create And Maintain Good Habits
Good habits are necessary for creating a happy, healthy and successful life. Habits like eating healthy meals, regular exercise, meditation and continuous learning are must-haves. Good meals and exercise will keep your body in shape, while meditation and reading will keep your mind sharp and focused.
There are lots of good habits you can embrace depending on your goals and priorities at the moment. For example, if you’re a student, you’ll need good study habits. You can also get a mentor, someone you admire, analyze the habits they’ve cultivated over time that has led to their success and copy their process.
Push Outside Your Comfort Zone
Your 20s should be a time to test opportunities and take risks. Now I’m not saying you should throw caution to the wind, but don’t allow yourself to become firmly rooted in your comfort zone. Be willing to try things that will push you beyond your limits, move away from home, get a job in another state, start your own business and if you fail, dust yourself up and try again.
How badly do you want to be successful in life? If you want it bad enough, you’ll learn to sacrifice a few years of comfort for a lifetime of success.
All great achievements are a result of hard work and persistence. So don’t expect to fold your hands and hit the jackpot overnight. While that may be possible in the lottery and for gamblers, the odds are 0.1 to 100. Success is built gradually through years of learning, working, failing and winning which is why you should start laying the foundation now that you’re in your 20s.
Your 20s are a time for figuring out your purpose and what you do within this decade will go a long way in determining if you’ll have a successful professional and personal life. So start now by learning skills, good habits and networking with the right people that will help you achieve those goals you have set for yourself.
That’ll be all for this article, hope you found it helpful. Please like and share with your friends and don’t forget to subscribe to our Elite Digest newsletter to receive notifications when we post similar articles.