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12 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Too Serious About Love In Your 20s

12 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Too Serious About Love In Your 20s

Your twenties are meant to be one of the most exciting decades of your life. Above all, it is a time to learn. It is supposed to be an incredible time characterized by self-discovery and experimentation. It is not a time to limit yourself by rushing to serious decisions that could impact the rest of your life. More specifically, it is not a time to focus on love or finding “the one”.

With the case of love, your twenties should be a time to explore both yourself and your preferences in specific types of partners. Ultimately, your twenties are a period of immense trial and error. Your twenties are a key stage that prepare you for your 30’s and 40’s, the time when you are mature enough to truly prosper.

Here are 12 reasons why you shouldn’t be too serious about love in your 20’s:

1. Love requires patience. This comes after your twenties

In your twenties, you have all the time in the world. However, one thing all young adults seem to lack in their twenties is patience. It’s a product of growing up in the Information Age. We don’t want to wait. We want it right now.

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Unfortunately, love doesn’t work this way. It takes time for a relationship to grow and for chemistry to develop. Love is all about mutual growth and chemistry. The only way you can experience this is through patience.

2. Love requires dedication

When you seriously love someone, you need to be all in. This requires responsibility and dedication for both partners. If we’re being honest here, your twenties are a time for you to have fun and explore.

Who wants to cut the fun in their twenties short? Some people do that and often find themselves unhappy and wondering “what if”.

3. Love often finds you

They say that love tends to come from unexpected places. If this is the case, why not just live life to the fullest and worry about love later?

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4. Love materializes when you are ready

We’ve already established that love requires patience and dedication. We’ve also established that these often develop after your twenties. Therefore, it’s safe to say that you are simply not ready for love in your twenties. Be patient it will find you when it finds you.

5. Your twenties are a time to find yourself

Living life to the fullest and learning as much as possible requires an enormous commitment to yourself. Quite frankly, you need to be selfish if you want to find yourself. This is an enormous trade off because selfishness has no place in the dynamic of love. You and your partner must be selfless.

6. Your twenties are a time to explore

How can you know if your partner is what’s best for you if you settled down with them too soon? You can’t. If you choose to take love too seriously and settle down with one partner in your twenties, you are essentially rolling the dice. Maybe your partner is a great match. But maybe not.

Why not spend time exploring and wait so that you can make better long-term decisions on your love life a few years down the road?

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7. Your twenties are a time to go all out and live life to the fullest

Your twenties are a time when your youthful energy and health are at an all time high. This is the time to live it up. Try new things. Be adventurous. Go out and see the world. This is the time to do it. You don’t want to become another one of those stories of someone who wakes up at age 35 and realizes that they settled down too soon.

8. Love requires time

You are supposed to be living your life in your twenties. There simply isn’t time to fully dedicate yourself to someone if you are busy seeing the world and doing the things you want to do. For instance, how can you build a relationship if you want to take time to find yourself and also travel the world? You can’t.

9. Love is serious business

Love is a serious thing. However, your twenties are a time to let loose and have fun. The time to make serious love decisions should be saved for when you are fully matured. For instance, would it be fair to have someone commit to you if you yourself were not all in? No, it would not be fair.

10. You will be “better” later on in life

All of the experiences and self-discovery during your twenties will pay off because they will translate in to a better individual in later decades. You will be more experienced because you will be seasoned by life.

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Ultimately, you will be better and will truly be able to offer something special to that lucky someone.

11. If you take the time to enjoy your twenties, you will be more stable later on in life

Let’s compare two people. Person A lived life to the fullest in their twenties. Eventually, they settled down with someone in their thirties. Person B decided to settle down with someone right away. We can probably assume that Person A is satisfied because they see themselves as having lived a full life and are stable. In contrast, we can probably assume that Person B might have some questions might still have that desire to go out and see the world.

12. Life is not a sprint. It’s a marathon

You should not be in any rush to go through the various stages in life, especially love. You will meet someone when you are ready and this often means when you are at your best and are on your life’s path.

Featured photo credit: Rose/podmorelarry via flickr.com

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Last Updated on April 11, 2019

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

How Communication Skills Help Your Success

Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

Create a Positive Experience

Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

Help Leadership Skills

It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

Build Better Teams

Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

1. Listen

Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

2. Know Your Audience

Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

Here is a good way to think about it:

Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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3. Minimize

I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

4. Over Communicate

So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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5. Body Language

The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

Conclusion

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

Now go communicate your way to success.

More Resources About Effective Communication

Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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