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20 Things We Never Thought We’d Become Obsessed With In Our Late 20s

20 Things We Never Thought We’d Become Obsessed With In Our Late 20s

A few years ago you were absolutely okay with eating pizza for dinner each night, living in a tiny flat with five buddies and rocking out on the dance floor till dawn. The time flies though, and you steadily head towards your third decade.

Suddenly you find yourself in your late 20s, slightly obsessed with the opposite types of activities and past times.

Here are 20 things I had no idea I would become so excited about a few years ago!

1. Cooking elaborate dishes

You know you are in your late 20s when pasta no longer sounds like a decent dinner option. We now crave to savor exquisite tastes and opt to spend weeks learning to cook something gourmand (and Instagram-worthy) like Coquilles Saint-Jacques and roasted potato salad with candied walnuts as a side dish.

Yes, it takes a hell of a lot of time, practice and a few kilos of wasted food, but we feel extremely proud as we read all the rave comments under the photo!

2. Local organic vegetables

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    You’ve come to love Saturdays even more! You get up early and dash directly to the farmer’s market for fresh veggies and fragrant bundles of salads. You then happily spend the afternoon chopping and packing them into Tupperware to make the taste last longer.

    You always shop seasonal and inspect each item with notorious meticulousness before stacking it into the basket. Some vendors already know you by name and even make small discounts, and there’s a list on your fridge with of all organic shops around your area with notes where you should by what. Also, you have even attempted growing some veggies and herbs at your windowsill to keep basics at stock all the time and save some money from your food check.

    3. Being concerned about your health

    It’s not that you are getting old, but some extra concern about your well-being has become a “thing”. Suddenly, you became aware of all the negative impacts of certain foods, toxic liquids in your household and even harmful bacteria hiding in the hospitals.

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    You schedule regular appointments to your dentists and GP, you even once consulted a nutritionist and then you were over the moon happy when you realized your new insurance covers vision! You now realize the value of working for a company that offers the best health insurance packages.

    4. Professional cleaning services

    The truth is, you’ve never liked cleaning up. Living in a cramped, cluttered cave with wrappers behind the couch was pretty fine in college, yet absolutely unbearable in your late 20s. Now, every other weekend, you crouch and run sprints around the house with a vacuum cleaner. Sometimes you feel like if someone would gift you a year of professional cleaning services, you would immediately marry them!

    5. Massages

    A night on a friend’s couch leaves you with a terrible pain in the neck. So does the office chair, spending too much time driving, a bad mattress and loads of other activities. It seems like we got into our late 20s and all our pains and aches intensified.

    A 60 minute massage session with fragrant oil dripped all over your poor body is no longer a luxury, but an actual necessity!

    6. Having a preference of wine

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      Long gone are the days you could drink anything that had at least a slight grape aftertaste. A typical conversation with your significant other at a wine cellar now looks like:

      “Why are we taking that Alsatian Riesling again? I’m not sure that year 2012 will pair well with the fish.”

      “But, babe, we’ve drank that red dry Bordeaux last weekend and I didn’t like that nutty aftertaste, remember?”

      At the venue, you can spend a good half an hour inspecting the wine menu and shooting questions at the sommelier.

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      7. Going to bed before midnight

      Why should anyone sane stay out till dawn and rave like a madman to get up at 6 am still hangovered and absolutely devastated? All the cool kids like you are going to bed early.

      A “big night out” now is more like – let’s cook something cool, drink a bottle of good wine and go wild by trying out a fancy dessert.

      8. Enjoying music  from back in the 90s

      You still remember lyrics to most ‘N SYNC songs, right? And chances are, no one’s going to make fun of you when you mention that in public. In most cases, you’ll end up doing a karaoke session and going as low as “Hit Me Baby One More Time” while having the time of your lives!

      9. New home appliances

      For a second you may feel a little embarrassed by being so excited with your new super-awesome self-cleaning espresso machine, but it all goes away once you see how anxiously envious your friends become.

      Your wish-list now has quite a lot of incredible items you would die to have, from a baked taco shell toaster to a pro noodle maker to make your own spaghetti from organic ingredients!

      10. Having a seat at the concert

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        No matter how much you love that band, you will not go to their live gig if there’s no sitting places left! Rubbing elbows with fellow fans in front of the stage (and secretly wondering if that guy in front of you will smack your nose or not) doesn’t sound cool anymore.

        Neither does a free ticket for a Katy Perry concert…without sitting.

        11. Quality clothes

        You are no longer friends with Forever 21 and H&M. At some point, you’ve started feeling really awkward when walking in. Besides, you are tired of throwing away another pile of tiny dresses, small t-shirts and shrunken sweaters.

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        In our late 20s, we like to spend more on clothes only if it’s actually worth the price. A pair of rubber designer flip-flops for $20 is a rip-off, but a pair of good suede loafers is a wise investment.

        12. Having “productive” weekends

        There’s no longer an “epic” story to tell on Monday about getting wasted, hitting 10 clubs in a row and waking up in another state. Those days are past and now you love telling stories about how hellishly productive you’ve been during those two so-called rest days.

        You’ve cleaned the entire flat, cooked for a five-person dinner party (with two dish changes!), finished reading the Ernest Hemingway biography, washed the car, cut the lawn and even had time to try a new hairdo!

        13. Dinner parties

        No longer “you bring your food, I give my space to chill” types of parties, but fancy Martha Stewart-inspired feasts with matching napkins, two glasses for water and wine, at least three different types of forks, fresh floral bouquet (that you’ve struggled to make two hours after watching that DIY video), napkin holders and candles.

        You have even thought about ordering calligraphy for name cards, but is seemed like too much, right?

        14. Establishing a sacred morning routine

        Because morning defines your mood for the whole day! You can sacrifice those 15 extra minutes of sleep for a series of yoga exercises and extra five minutes in a warm shower to gather your thoughts.

        You’ve ditched coffee for a glass of hot lemon water, you typically cook salads and smoothies instead of cereals and get your clothes prepared in the evening. All those procedures are sacred and you can not be deprived of any of it!

        15. Documentaries

        Watching soap operas and reality shows? Duh, we are so over it! Instead, we prefer to actually learn something new while interacting with the telly or opt for some beautifully puzzling art-house movie for entertainment.

        16. Brunches

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          Will our generation someday be named as “the brunchers”? It seems like everything we do involves a brunch. What shall we do today? How about having a brunch at that new awesome cafe around the corner? No brunch offers? This place sucks! I will never tag it on Instagram, even though the coffee looks pretty.

          17. Private space

          Sharing is no longer caring when it comes to your “own space”. You are okay to pay that dreadful solo rent price, so that you won’t have to justify an hour in the bathroom, while listening your whining roommate on the other side of the door.

          Or your music choices, or your right not to wear pants around the house. The freedom to do whatever you want in your space is almost overwhelming!

          18. DIY’ing

          In your late 20s, your YouTube subscription is full of DIY channels – from nail art to authentic reed basket weaving. I’m not even mentioning how many pictures you have pinned on your secret DIY Pinterest board.

          During the last year you’ve probably attempted making all kind of stuff, from that shoe holder planter to a wood-burning camp stove.

          19. Treating pets like children

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            Because yes, it is absolutely acceptable to dress up both of your cats in lovely Santa costumes and send that photo as a postcard to all of your friends and family. Also, there’s nothing weird about you seeming to always post pictures with your cat doing cute things or talking for hours about how clever it is and what new tricks it’s learned!

            20. Telling the truth

            We no longer care that much if someone thinks we are “rude” or “unkind” when expressing our opinions and telling people what we really think. We are too tired of pretending to be “okay” when things are bad and can usually just spill everything out to our close friends without being ashamed.

            Also, by our late 20s, we’ve come to realize that we cannot change who we are or change the people around us. But we can always let them go and get rid of any toxic relationships that spoil our lives.

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            Elena Prokopets

            Freelance Writer

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            Last Updated on May 20, 2019

            How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future

            How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future

            We sometimes hear people talk about the importance of living in the moment. We might hear about the different ways it will benefit us. It all sounds wonderful, but how exactly can we live in the moment when our mind is constantly racing?

            In this article, we’ll discuss some of the benefits of living in the moment you may not be aware of. Then we’ll look at some of the obstacles, and why we worry. Finally, and most importantly, I’ll show you how to live in the moment and stop worrying using some simple practices that you can easily incorporate into your busy schedule.

            The result: a happier and more fulfilling life.

            Why Live in the Moment?

            “The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” – Buddha

            Living in the moment has innumerable benefits. Here are just a few that will enhance your life tremendously:

            Better Health

            By reducing stress and anxiety, you avoid many of the associated health consequences, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and obesity. Studies have shown that being present can also improve psychological well-being.[1]

            Improve Your Relationships

            Have you ever been with someone who is physically present, but mentally he’s a million miles away?

            Being with unavailable people is a struggle, and makes relationships with them extremely difficult.

            How about being with someone who is fully present? We enjoy being with him because we can make a much deeper connection with him.

            By living in the moment, you can be that person other people enjoy being with, and you make relationships much easier.

            Greater Self-Control

            You have greater control over your mind, body, and emotions. Imagine how much better your life would be if it weren’t at the mercy of a racing mind, and unpredictable emotions. You would certainly be more at peace, and much happier.[2]

            Why Do We Worry?

            Before we answer this question, it’s important to distinguish between worry and concern.

            When we are concerned about something, we are more likely dealing with a real problem with realistic solutions. Then once we do whatever we can to address the problem, we’re willing to live with the outcome.

            Worrying, on the other hand, involves unrealistic thinking. We may worry about a problem that doesn’t really exist, or dwell on all the bad things that can happen as a result. Then, we feel unable to deal with the outcome. Either way, we have difficulty dealing with uncertainty, which is a normal part of life.

            Certainly, some of our problems may not have desirable outcomes, such as a serious health issue. Some problems may be beyond our control, such as civil unrest or economic downturn. In such cases, it can be hard to avoid worrying, but not impossible.

            We sometimes worry when we don’t know how to deal with a problem. For example, have you ever received a letter from the IRS telling you that you owe more money than you thought, and don’t have the funds to pay it? This is enough to scare anyone who is not familiar with taxes.

            How to Live in the Moment

            Step 1: Overcome Worrying

            In order to overcome worrying, we need to do two things:

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            Learn How to Live in the Moment

            By living in the moment, you calm your mind, and are able to see more clearly.

            The reason some problems seem so daunting is that our mind is racing so fast that we cannot see things as they truly are. So we make up a bunch of possible scenarios in our mind, most of which are unlikely to come true.

            In addition to seeing more clearly, living in the moment will help us think more realistically. Unrealistic thinking is fueled by confusion and uncontrolled emotions. Calming your mind will reduce confusion and calm your emotions.

            Learn to Focus on Solutions Instead of Problems

            Some people tend to be more solution-oriented, and others more problem-oriented. Some of the factors that may determine this are gender, upbringing, and education.

            People with higher educations tend to be problem-solvers. That is what their years of education train them to do. In addition, their jobs probably reinforce this way of thinking.

            If you’re not problem-solving oriented, don’t worry. You can train yourself to worry less. We’ll discuss that soon.

            Step 2: Identify Obstacles to Living in the Moment

            In today’s busy world, it can be a challenge to live in the moment. The reasons revolve around how our mind works, and outside influences.

            Racing Mind

            Many busy people have a racing mind that never seems to slow down. Their mind gets so agitated from too much sensory stimulation.

            You see, anything that stimulates any of our five senses (sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell) will trigger a thought, and that thought leads to another, and then another, and so on.

            If you have a busy life, all your activities will overstimulate your mind, and make it seemingly impossible to slow it down. And an agitated mind wants to go to another place and time.

            Unpleasant Situations and Troublesome Past

            None of us want to be in unpleasant situations, or remember those of the past. They can bring up painful emotions, which we don’t want to feel.

            So how do most people cope with painful emotions?

            By doing whatever we can to avoid them, and we can avoid them by taking our mind to another place and time where things are more pleasant.

            In other words, we avoid living in the present moment.

            Some people resort to doing things that stimulate sensory pleasure, such as eating, alcohol or sex. Others will consume substances that dull their mind, and keep them from thinking about unpleasant or stressful situations.

            A Wandering Mind

            From the moment we are born (likely sooner) until the time we die, our body and mind are active performing some function. So it’s natural for our mind to have some level of activity, whether conscious or unconscious.

            Generally, a wandering mind is unproductive. As noted above, one thought starts an endless chain of thoughts. The reason is that one thought reminds us of something else, and this process can go on until we need our mind to perform a specific function, or until we get distracted with something else.

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            Now, there are times when a wandering mind can be productive, such as when creating works of art, or trying to find creative solutions to problems. In such cases, we need our mind to explore different possibilities.[3]

            Outside Influences

            Most of us are not fully aware of how our environment and social norms influence our thinking and behavior. People and institutions are constantly competing for our attention. The news media draw our attention to the past, and advertising usually to the future.[4]

            Many people around us who dwell on the past or future try to draw us to their way of thinking. Even the whole concept of the American dream is geared toward the future. It tells us that if we acquire things like a good career, family, and house, then we’ll be happy.

            Step 3: Practice Mindfulness

            So how can we live in the moment in a world that is constantly trying to draw our attention to the past and future?

            Before we get into concrete actions you can take, it’s important to understand what mindfulness is. You’ve probably heard the term before, but may not fully understand what it means.

            Understand Mindfulness

            The concept of mindfulness is actually quite simple. To be mindful IS to live in the moment.

            When you are mindful, your attention is focused on what is happening in the present moment. When you are mindful, you are fully in touch with reality because the present moment is where reality is taking place.

            You are aware of what is happening in your body, mind, emotions, and the world around you. This is different than thinking about these things. To develop greater understanding, you don’t have to think about them so much, but rather just observe them.

            This may be counter-intuitive to many people, especially intellectuals, because they’re so used to using logic to develop greater understanding. With mindfulness, we calm our mind and emotions so we can see clearer. Then much of our understanding will come from simply observation. When we develop mindfulness, we literally expand our awareness.

            To develop mindfulness, we need to train ourselves to observe things more objectively, that is, without our emotions or preconceived ideas influencing our views.

            You’d be surprised to find out just how much your emotions and past experiences influence your judgments. What many of us do, including intellectuals, is make a quick judgment about a person or situation, then add the reasoning afterwards. That is not logic, but rather rationalization.

            When you are mindful, you reserve judgment until you have more information. Notice how I said “more information,” and not “complete information.” It is impossible to have complete information about something because there are infinite numbers of factors affecting it. So the best thing to do is be as objective as possible, and always be open to new information.

            Viewing the world in this manner can be a challenge, and takes some practice to overcome years of habitual thinking. But it can make our lives infinitely more fulfilling, as we’ll be able to make much better decisions that will result in real happiness and inner peace.

            So if you’re ready to live a better life, read on for some simple mindfulness practices that you can incorporate into your busy life to help you live in the moment, that is, reality.

            You don’t have to do all of them, but rather choose the ones that appeal to you, and suit your lifestyle.

            Mindfulness Meditation

            Mindfulness meditation is the mainstay of developing mindfulness and living in the moment. To practice mindfulness meditation, all you really have to do is sit quietly and follow your breathing. When your mind wanders off, just bring it back to your breath.

            Notice how your lungs expand with each in-breath, and contract with each out-breath. Let your breathing become relaxed and natural.

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            You don’t have to do it perfectly. The idea is to give your mind a rest from the constant sensory stimulation of all your activities, and just allow it to settle down naturally. Start with about 5 to 10 minutes per day and work your way up to about 20 minutes or longer.

            This practice is highly effective, and can have both short-term and long-term benefits.

            If you want to learn more about mindfulness meditation, take a look at this article: How to Practice Mindful Meditation to Calm Your Thoughts

            Also, there are many good books on the market that explain the concepts and techniques in greater detail. Some examples are

            Mindful Breathing

            While this may sound the same as mindfulness meditation, all you’re really doing is taking short breaks occasionally (10 to 15 seconds) to observe your breathing. Stop whatever you’re doing, and take a few mindful breaths, then resume your activity. That’s it.

            You can do mindful breathing at any time of the day during your busy schedule. What it does is interrupt the acceleration of your mind. It is like taking your foot off the accelerator while driving. It’s a nice refreshing break you can take without anyone noticing.

            Here’re some breathing exercises you can try to learn: 5 Breathing Exercises for Anxiety (Simple and Calm Anxiety Quickly)

            Mindful Walking

            Walking is an activity that you perform several times throughout the day. We often think we’re being productive by texting, or calling someone while walking. But are we really?

            Instead of getting on your cell phone, or letting your mind wander off, why not use your walking for training yourself to live in the moment?

            Mindful walking is similar to mindful breathing. But instead of focusing on your breath, focus on your walking. Pay attention to each footstep. Also, notice the different motions of your arms, legs, and torso. When your mind wanders off, just bring your attention back to your walking.

            You can even make a meditation out of walking. That is, go walking for a few minutes outside. Start by slowing down your pace. If you slow down your body, your mind will follow.

            In addition to paying attention to your walking, notice the trees, sunshine, and critters. A mindful walk is enjoyable, and can really help your mind settle down.

            Mindful Eating

            Eating is an activity that most of us perform mindlessly. The reason is that it doesn’t require your attention to perform. So what many of us do is try to multitask while we eat. We may talk on the phone, text, watch TV, or even hold a meeting.

            The problem with not eating mindfully is that we don’t eat what our body and mind need to perform at an optimal level. We may eat unhealthy foods, or too much. This can lead to various health problems, especially as we get older.

            Mindful eating has many health benefits, such as reduced food cravings, better digestion, and even weight loss.[5]

            So how do you eat mindfully? Start by slowing down, and avoid the temptation to distract yourself with another activity. Here are 3 different aspects of eating where you can practice mindfulness:

            • Eating itself: Focus your attention on choosing a portion of food to insert into your mouth. Notice the smell, flavor, and texture as you chew it; then finally swallow it. As with following your breath during meditation, pay close attention to every aspect of eating.
            • Choice of foods: Although you’ve already chosen your food before you have begun eating, you can still take the opportunity to contemplate your choices. Think about the nutrients your body needs to sustain itself. Ask yourself, “Is this what my body and mind need to be healthy, and perform at an optimal level?” “Is it sufficient, or too much?” By asking yourself these questions, you will be more inclined to make better choices in the future.
            • Contemplating the sources: Most of us don’t think about all the work it takes to provide us with the food we eat. While you’re eating, consider all the work by the farmer, shipping company, and the grocery store. These are real people who worked hard to provide you with the food necessary for your survival.

            You can find more tips about mindful eating here: 7 Simple Steps to Mindful Eating

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            Mindful Activities

            Choose an activity that you perform regularly, such as washing dishes. Focus all your attention on this activity, and resist the temptation to let your mind wander, or get distracted. When it does, then just bring your attention back to washing dishes.

            Notice some of the specific movements, or sensations of washing dishes, such as how the soapy water feels on your hands, the circular motion of scrubbing the dish, or the rinsing. You’d be surprised at how such a mundane activity can truly expand your awareness.

            You can choose any activity you like, such as ironing, folding clothes, mowing the lawn, or showering. Over time, you will begin doing all these activities with greater mindfulness.

            Bonus Suggestion

            Here is one activity that is not generally considered a mindful activity. It is physical training. For those of you who already workout, it may be easy to see how physical training requires you to live in the moment.

            Here’s how it works:

            In order to perform an exercise to get the desired benefit, you need to use a proper technique. In order to use the proper technique, you need to pay close attention to how you are doing the exercise. In other words, you need to be fully present in the moment.

            Another aspect of training that helps you live in the moment is tuning into what is happening in your body. First, during exercising, you need to pay close attention to how your body feels. Are you exercising hard enough, or not enough?

            There are times to go easy, such as during warm-up exercises; and times to push yourself hard, such as when you’re warmed up and want to stimulate growth.

            Second, when you’re not in the gym training, you need to pay close attention to the signals your body is sending you. What nutrients and how much do you need to consume to support your training? How much rest do you need?

            By tuning in to your body, you force yourself to be in the moment. So, physical training done properly is just about as effective as meditation, or any mindful activity, for developing mindfulness. It’s also great for your health.

            Final Thoughts

            Practicing mindfulness is like regularly putting small amounts of change in a jar. They will all add up over time. And this will add up to greater peace and happiness.

            Remember, you don’t have to do the mindfulness practices perfectly to get the benefits. All you have to do is keep bringing your mind back to the present moment when it wanders off.

            Practicing mindfulness may be a bit challenging in the beginning; but I can assure you, it will get easier fairly quickly.

            The benefits of living in the moment are well within your reach, no matter how much your mind is racing. If you stick with these mindfulness practices, you too will learn how to live in the moment and stop worrying; and when you do, a whole new world will open up for you. This is what Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh calls the ultimate reality.

            Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

            Reference

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