It seems just like yesterday I blew out the candles for my 21st birthday. Gone are the awkward days of my teenage years. All of a sudden, in just a couple of months time, I will be a quarter of a century old. The big 2–5 is here and I am no longer in my early twenties. The depressing thing is, everyone I know (even Google!), tells me how scary it is to turn 25.
Well, I beg to differ. In fact, somewhere between finishing high school, going to college and until today, I am sure lots of amazing things have happened for all of us.
As terrifying as it may sound, turning 25 can be a very positive experience. Forget what everyone has to say—turning 25 is not scary. One thing is for sure: you don’t turn 25 every day, so enjoy it while it lasts! Whether you’re turning 25 soon or next year, here are 25 of the most positive things you should already know by now.
1. You should know how to choose your friends wisely, and that it’s not possible to keep them all.
From the day we were born until now, we have met a lot of people. Some of them stay with us through the good and the bad, while some just come around when they need something from us. It’s not possible to keep everyone; the chemistry can stray away or you might outgrow each other. That’s okay. Keep the real ones for life and you will have some amazing friendships—even if you can only count how many genuine friends you have with one hand.
2. You should know that your parents are cooler now than they were ten years ago.
Back when you’re growing up, you probably used to fight and argue with your parents as much as I did. The relationship we form with our mum and dad in our early twenties is different now. Respect that they are getting older and cherish every moment you’ve got with them while they’re still here because they won’t be around forever.
3. You should know that staying in is as fun as staying out.
Gone were the days where we dream of going out every weekend, get high and wasted and probably winding up in an unknown place the next morning. Turning 25 means that you’ve had your time for that sort of fun and it’s now time to unwind and chill out with a glass of wine without having someone thinking you’re uncool.
4. You should know that 23 is done and dusted.
Let’s face it—23 is possibly the worse age for all of us. Back then, we weren’t mature enough to think about what we want to do despite finishing college and we were equally sick of going out AND staying home. I’ve got to admit, my year 23 wasn’t pleasant. It was the year where everything just fell apart. Good news is? It was two years ago and the worst is over. Here’s to many more awesome years ahead!
5. You should know the importance of saying no.
You don’t have to say yes to everything and turning 25 means you’ve got that figured out. If you’re tired on a Friday night after a long week at work and all you want to do is just curl up in bed with a good book, say no to Friday night drinks. Life can be more fulfilling if you do things for yourself instead of what people expect you to and you’re old enough to know that.
Also on Lifehack: Problems Saying No? 11 Ready Tips to Say No To Others.
6. You should know how to decorate your house and make it your home.
Your crib today might not be your house forever, but some part of you should feel mature enough to make your apartment a home and not just a house. Take some time to decorate it with your favorite things, diamonds and rubies. Put up a photo of you and your sister on the table next to the TV. Splash some of your personality in it. Just because you’re doing your graduate Masters and it’s a student lodge doesn’t mean you can’t feel at home.
7. You should know that flossing shouldn’t be a thing you take lightly.
You know how important it is to floss. And you also know that you won’t stay in your youth forever. Taking care of yourself physically can bring many healthful rewards in the future. Knee and back pain is real and if we don’t start taking care of it now, we’ll probably feel sorry at 30. Get up; start working out and eating well. You know you have to.
8. You should know that it’s okay to be selfish.
To a certain extent, especially if it’s your happiness that’s in the equation. You should be doing things today that make you happy and contented rather than sad and annoyed. Give peer pressure a tosser and start doing something good for yourself.
9. You should know how great it is to leave home and see the world.
Turning 25 means that you have probably had the opportunity to leave home or the country and see the world. You probably know by now that it feels amazing to step out of your comfort zone and experience another different culture as a whole. This experience has opened up your mind in so many ways that weren’t possible when you were younger, and you should be proud of it.
10. You should know that dressing up and attending fabulous weddings are awesome.
Weddings are popping out everywhere, and you’ll probably hear about weddings every weekend. Even if you’re still single, attending weddings of those who are close to your heart is heart-warming. One of my best friends whom I’ve known since I was 12 just got hitched last year. Her bridal party? Seven of our other friends, all of whom we’ve known since junior high. Celebrate the love and appreciate the fact you don’t have babies running around, yet.
11. You should know that money can be a serious issue if not handled properly.
Money is one of those thing that was not taught in school, and the only way to learn how to handle it is through experience. Turning 25 means we know how to deal with it, perhaps better than we ever did in our early twenties, and that’s a thing to celebrate.
Also on Lifehack: 5 Things You Should Know About Personal Finance
12. You should know that splurging once in a while after working hard is pretty great.
Nothing beats earning money for us, especially when we know it’s money hard-earned. It feels good to buy that expensive coat or to spend money on a round-the-world trip because you’ve earned it fair and square.
13. You should know the meaning of responsible drinking, not just for yourself, but also for others.
Turning 25 means you know your limits and you’re wise enough to stay at it. Gone are the days where you drink as though it’s the last night of your life. You should understand too that drinking responsibly does not only affect you, but the people around you, something you probably didn’t know at 21.
14. You should know that car rental companies love you.
Car rental, car insurance, car share—car everything. We all know how annoying it is renting a car in our early 20s. Rental restrictions, increased driver protection, higher excess and what did you say, young driver surcharge? Gone for good!
15. You should know that it’s okay to want a relationship but know that it takes work.
Does watching your best friend get married make you feel left out? It’s human to want someone to love and to accept us the way we want them to. But turning 25 means we know that having a relationship is more than just a feeling. It takes work—lots of it, and you know that love won’t just come knocking at your door when you’re staying in on a Sunday. You have to get out there and look for it.
16. You should know that it’s okay to be single too.
Stop crying your heart out if you’re 25 and still single. You’re still awesome. Think about it, you get to meet people. You get to go out there and experience life without needing to consult anyone. And you get a whole big bed to yourself. It’s important to get to know yourself before someone steps in. That’s an experience in itself, so get out there—the whole world is waiting for you.
17. You should know that heartbreaks are painful, and what to do about them.
It doesn’t have to be about a relationship or that day you broke up with your ex and it took you 365 days to get over it. It could be a loss of friendship or someone dear to you. It could be losing lots of money or having the insurance company deny your claim. Whatever it is, we should have all experience heartbreaks in one way or another—and it is painful. The good thing is, turning 25 means we’ve gathered enough experience to learn from those painful moments. Should anything like that happen again in the future, we know what to do, even if it means lying in bed all day just to get over it.
18. You should know that being kind is mandatory, and putting your pride away is a sign of maturity.
With age comes wisdom. Turning 25 means you’ve probably had your fair share of Mean Girls moments. Wishing for someone to get hit by a bus is not kind, but I’m sure we have all wished for that sometime in our early twenties. We’re wise enough now to shrug off and walk away from a potential fight because we know it’s a waste of time. We’re also wise enough now to know that being kind is an excellent trait and we do it, sometimes not because they deserve it, but because we do.
19. You should know that life is too short to worry all the time.
Turning 25 can be quite a scary thing for some of you. You sit there, a few weeks before your birthday, thinking, “Where have all the years gone?” Let me just say that it has gone by and whether we like it or not, we can’t turn back time. So stop worrying, start loving and appreciating future moments because life is too short for unnecessary things like this.
20. You should know that confidence is sexy.
And it’s sexier than any piece of clothing item you own. Stand up tall, keep your chin up and look straight ahead of you. Your personality shines brighter than the sun.
21. You should know that even strangers can make a difference in your life.
Being in the real world means you’re bound to meet people when you least expect it. Use this opportunity, maturity and experience to get to know them and form quality relationships worth keeping. You never know how someone can make a difference to your life.
22. You should know that it’s okay to not know everything.
There is something positive about not knowing everything—you get to learn. And learning never stops. In fact, even though we’re turning 25, the truth is, we don’t know much and there’s so much more to learn. Keep your eyes wide open, listen and try to absorb many new things every day.
23. You should know that you should NOT take things for granted.
We hear about death and loss every day. If you love someone, tell that person your true feelings. Similarly, if you really love your job, give it your hundred percent. Nothing lasts forever and you never know when it’s too late, so don’t ever take anything for granted. Now go tell your mum you appreciate her and all that she’s done!
24. You should know that rejection is the one thing in life that makes you stronger.
If you’re turning 25, it probably means something or someone has rejected you at least once in your life. It hurts, especially if it’s someone you truly love or a gig you’ve been running after since forever, but every rejection makes you a better person. Don’t dwell on it.
25. You should know that being a quarter of a century old is really not that bad.
Yes, you are about to turn 25 (or may have already) but seriously, being a quarter of a century is really not that bad. You’ve built the base so far, now build the walls of your life and paint it with your favorite colors. Turning 25 means you’re 25 years wiser, but the learning and experiences do not stop here. Appreciate what you’ve got, make memories, live in the moment and forget about the number. Life is not that bad after all.
If you’re turning 25 soon, why not read some of the things you should do before turning 25?