Tomorrow, I will have finished the first month of being twenty-nine years old. Without any surprise, it's flown by so fast and I know the next eleven months will effortlessly fly by just the same. To me, living out my twenties has meant realizing my unique dreams and identity all the while acknowledging my strengths and weaknesses and learning how to handle them.
I feel nostalgic thinking back on memories from my early twenties because they were a time of so much excitement and growth for me. Straight after college I moved to New York where I learned all about what freedoms and setbacks true independence brings. In the more recent years, I moved to Los Angeles, fell in love, got married, started Mint + Varnish; and very, very recently started designing my own home goods line. More on that later!
I'll soon be entering into my thirties and I can't say I'm upset about it in the least bit! I'm excited for all of the experiences my thirties will bring. And until then, I'm going to be soaking in every last day as a twenty-something.
Here are some keys things I've taken away from my twenties:
• No need to worry or compare. Our world has a way of creating timelines for people. I used to worry about my time frame with job promotions, relationships, when I'd be able to buy my first house, etc. Everyone moves at different speeds for different reasons, and there's no need to compare or feel like you have to catch up with others.
• Stop rushing. I've taken some wrong turns because I was overeager at times, like when I accepted my first job offer. I knew the job wasn't the right fit for me, but I accepted it anyway because I left like I had to. Instead I've learned to rest while I wait and patiently trust that what I truly want will come when the timing is right.
• Life has it's seasons. There are months that seemed really lonely or hard for one reason or another but they always pass.
• Community is most important. I've learned that I'm happiest when I have a strong community of people around me. I gain a lot from one-on-one coffee dates with my girlfriends, couples gatherings, and larger dinner parties. It's in those conversations that I find most of my inspiration with life and work and it feels just as good, if not better, to pour myself into others too.
• Learn from your mistakes and move on. Dwelling on the things you wish you could change in the past is a waste! It's good to recognize our faults and work on them, but letting them take the lead in how we define ourselves is really bad. Instead, just have hope in what our future choices will be.
• Have a vision and press forward. In my earlier twenties I lived a bit aimlessly, not really knowing the direction I wanted to go in. Looking back on who I was as a child was really helpful in identifying how I want to live as an adult. As kids we usually know exactly who we are and what we want to be, before people and circumstances convince us otherwise. Be confident in your specific dreams and uniqueness.