The TwentySomething Chronicles: Finding Yourself

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Many people have the notion that you have to find yourself by the time you reach your twenties. This isn’t a realistic approach to life. You can spend your childhood thinking about your dream career, and you can spend your teen years gaining experience for the future, but that doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to figure everything out by your twentieth birthday.

Your twenties is actually the best period of time in your life to find out who you really are and who you want to be. Whether you’re a college student, college graduate, or are going in a different route, you’re at a very important age in life. You’re on the verge of adulthood and anything is possible.

There aren’t set rules or steps to take in order to find yourself, but here are some basic guidelines:

1. Find out what is important to you.

If you care about a certain topic or organization, go ahead and do something about it. Find volunteer opportunities or research various ways to help a cause that is close to your heart. If you’re doing something worthwhile, you’ll find your calling in the midst of everything. It’s just a matter of putting yourself out there and figuring out your interests.

2. Use your hobbies to your advantage.

Delve deeper into your favorite hobby or take a new one for a spin. Hell, take on multiple hobbies at once. Actively involving yourself in your passions will spark a huge flame in your life. You will feel more satisfied with life if you are constantly doing things you love to do. Additionally, you might even find a new path you want to go down.

3. Cherish meaningful relationships.

You’re at an age where you’re finally finding true friendships and relationships. This is very crucial to your soul searching. If you have people in your life who truly care about you, this support system will back you up whenever you find yourself falling. These are peers who are working on finding themselves as well, so you won’t feel alone in the matter.

4. Don’t feel rushed. 

You don’t need to follow the standard “rules” of life. You don’t need to find your ultimate career in your twenties and get married before your thirties. Make your own rules and set your own standards. You have to understand that it’s perfectly okay if you’re not doing exactly what you want to do yet. You’re younger than you think you are.

5. Be open-minded.

Always be up to try new things in life, whether they work out or not. You learned at an early age that if you don’t try something, you’ll never know if you like it. This lesson will always be true, no matter what your age is. If you go for anything and everything, you’ll not only gain experiences, but you also might find something new that you like.

 

Another thing you should realize is that a part of finding yourself is creating yourself. You create yourself through both your positive and negative experiences, through your successes and your mistakes, and through your happiest times and your darkest times.

When you’re in your twenties, you can’t let personal or societal pressures get to you. You have to use the power of your own mind and your own heart in order to be you.

The process of finding yourself can be quite terrifying. But, as the cliché people say: it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. Let’s face it, your twenties would be boring as hell if you already had everything you want in life. So enjoy the ride and endure the crashes along the way; it’ll be worth it eventually.

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Expectations vs. Realities: The Life Of A Twenty-Something

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Life in your twenties is filled with a variety of emotions and experiences due to the fact that this is when adulthood truly comes into play. But the thing is, we don’t actually know how to be an adult until we do adult things. But the other thing is, we tend to go into our twenties with certain expectations, yet we come to realize that reality doesn’t quite match up to our expectations:

Career:

Expectation: Getting your dream job off the bat and being super happy about it.

Reality: Realizing that searching for a job is like trying to find your way out of a corn maze; you confidently walk in, then get excited when you turn a corner and see an opening, then you come to find that there’s actually more corn in your path, so you’re stuck. (Yeah, I know, it’s a great visual representation)

How to deal with the reality: It’s tough, but you have to keep trying. You can’t give up that soon because who wants to be stranded in the middle of a corn maze? Keep on keeping on and things will fall into place eventually. You might have to start with a job you don’t like, but by enduring a bad job, you’ll be able to build up your skills for your dream job.

Social Life:

Expectation: You feel like you’re still young enough to party whenever you want just like you did in college.

Reality: It’s somewhat socially unacceptable for a twenty-something to party as much as a college student, plus your alcohol tolerance is slowly but surely getting lower.

How to deal with the reality: This doesn’t mean that you can’t party at all, you just need to tone it down a bit and act more mature. You’ll also come to find that there are so many other fun things you can do with your friends that don’t involve getting wasted every weekend. Go be an adult socialite!

Health:

Expectation: You’re an adult now, so no one can tell you what not to eat.

Reality: You realize how important your health is and you realize that you should probably do something about it.

How to deal with the reality: It’s honestly not that hard to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Eat more fruits and vegetables and workout more. It doesn’t have to be this huge burden that takes over your life; just slowly incorporate healthiness into your life and it will soon stick with you. Go be a healthy adult!

Relationships:

Expectation: Since you’re in your twenties, you automatically need to find the person that you’re going to marry; time is running out!

Reality: It’s still okay to casually date people in your twenties.

How to deal with the reality: Don’t worry so much about finding the person you’re going to marry! It’s perfectly okay to go out on dates with people in order to figure out what type of person you want in your life. You’re still young, whether you believe it or not, which means you have plenty of time to find your husband/wife. If you happen to find that person in your twenties, more power to you! But it’s okay if you don’t!

Friendships:

Expectation: You’ll continue being friends with everyone you met in college and it’ll be great!

Reality: You will not be able to maintain every single friendship that you have made in college/in life in general.

How to deal with the reality: You have to realize that each friend you make won’t be a friend for life. You will have some amazing and special people who will definitely be in your life forever, but that can’t always be everyone. People get busy and move on with their lives, because that’s what happens when you get older. Appreciate the friends that have stuck with you and be open to new friendships, because you can definitely make new friends no matter how old you are!

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The Truth About Feminism

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Feminism has become a controversial topic mainly because of the false definitions that people give it. A lot of people out there truly believe that feminism involves hatred against men, yet this is completely untrue. I think a lot people are believing this because there are people out there who claim to be feminists and they also claim to hate men, which ultimately puts out a bad name for feminism as a whole. Misandrists are “men haters”, while feminists are equality lovers.

Feminism is not about hating men, or hating anyone for that matter. It simply stands for gender equality. While many might argue that feminism is more of fighting for women’s rights, which is partially true, it also just fights for equal rights for both women and men.

Our country has evolved through the years, but there are still many issues with gender inequality. A huge one is unequal pay. In most companies, women only get paid 78% of what men get paid, even if they are doing the exact same job. This wage gap not only makes no sense, but it’s also completely unfair. Why should a woman be paid less than a man if she is doing the same amount of work as him, and is just as equally educated? Equal pay isn’t really an outlandish request, it’s more so requesting something just.

Another aspect of gender inequality in the workforce is superiority. These days, we do see more women becoming CEO’s and managers, but there still seems to be a larger amount of men in higher positions. This could either be due to the fact that men are more likely to be hired, or it could be due to the fact that women are afraid to apply for higher positions. Either way, it’s a noticeable factor. Women and men should both be able to equally receive high positions if they both have the same qualifications and skills.

There are many internet trolls out there who created the term “meninism” as an opposing force to feminism. Meninism mocks feminism in many ways, and jokes around about men needing more rights. This new term was created by people who don’t understand the true meaning of feminism, as mentioned earlier. “Meninists” think that feminists believe in women having more power than men, which is, again, far from the truth.

To understand this topic better, use the term “gender equality” instead of “feminism”. Although, it doesn’t necessarily matter what term you use, because the general concept is what is really important. Why should one gender be superior over another? Who even decided that in the first place? We are all just people, and we should all be treated equally and respectfully.

10 Things You Learn In College Outside The Classroom

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College is first seen as a time of studying hard and working towards a career. While this is accurate, the overall college experience gives people the opportunity to learn more than just what they read in textbooks. College students learn all these extra little things without even realizing it. Here are some of the things that they learn:

1. How to find true friends. This lesson usually doesn’t come right off the bat because when you’re starting out as a freshman, everyone is new and everyone wants to hang out. But over the years, you come to find who is truly your friend and who is not. College allows you to differentiate between a true friend and a fake friend, which is something that develops with time.

2. How to have a stable relationship. College relationships are way more serious than they are in high school. If you go through some crappy relationships during college, you are able to learn what you can do differently in future relationships in order to make them more stable. If you have secured yourself in a serious relationship in college, you learn how to maintain it, and throughout the relationship, you learn how to make it better. College is a time for maturing, and understanding how to resolve conflict with others.

3. How to have fun. Even though you have to be serious when it comes to classwork, college is a time for going out and doing fun things. You learn that it’s perfectly okay to give yourself a break once in awhile, because having fun is a crucial part of life.

4. How to take care of yourself. This refers to many different aspects of taking care of yourself, from learning how to essentially live on your own, to eating well and exercising. Usually freshman year, you don’t care much about eating healthy and getting enough sleep, but over the years you realize how important these things are.

5. How to be responsible. Responsibility is a huge part of college because not only are you responsible for getting your homework done in time, but you also have outside responsibilities that come along with your independence. As more responsibilities get thrown on you throughout the years, you learn how to be a more organized individual.

6. How to work with others. You’ve been taught at a young age how to work with others, but it really sinks in during college. This is mainly because you get stuck doing group projects and working with people who you might not get along with. Being put in situations like these allow you to become more mature, and learn how to work with people who are different from you.

7. How to try new things. College is a time where new opportunities fly at you from every angle. Being in a new place on your own allows you to branch out a bit more than you’re used to. This is a good thing because it opens you up to new interests and new things that you might have never even tried before.

8. How to ask for help. During your college years, you come to realize that it’s perfectly okay to ask for help when you’re lost or confused. This can range from getting help on schoolwork to getting help with personal problems. This is something you learn because you’re maturing and realizing that getting help isn’t a bad thing, it’s only another thing that contributes to your growth.

9. How to be involved. Colleges have so many different organizations that you’re bound to have found at least one that you belong to. This involvement gives you some experiences that you might not have had without college. It also helps you meet new people who are interested in similar things to you, and sometimes these people can become your life-long friends.

10. How to find yourself. Essentially, college is the time in your life where you find out what you want to do in your future. With that, comes finding yourself. During college, you’ll sometimes lose yourself during your journey, and you might not have even completely found yourself by the time you graduate. But this doesn’t mean that you will never find yourself. You can take everything you’ve learned in college and apply it to your life, while continuing on your journey after graduation.

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10 Ways To Make The Most Out Of Senior Year Of College

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Senior year of college can be a stressful time. Not only are you trying to figure out your fast approaching future, but you’re also dreading the fact that you have to leave all these wonderful friends you made over the years. Even though senior year is scary, it can also be your best year of college if you let it be.

1. Get involved in as many activities as you can. Join a school organization that you’ve always wanted to join, or even try something new that is out of your comfort zone. Make the most out of the last of your college experience!

2. Spend as much time with friends as possible. This is especially important if you are your friends are all going separate ways after graduation. You want to spend a lot of time with them so that way you’ll stay close friends after school is done.

3. Stop worrying about the little things. If you spend too much time worrying about every little thing, you’re using up valuable time. Instead, focus on all the good things in life and take advantage of them.

4. Party it up. Get all your college-style partying in NOW because you’re just going to look like an idiot if you do it after college. If you don’t like to party/drink, have your own kind of party with something you enjoy. Have a movie night, with lots of pizza and too many cookies, and sit under a blanket fort. GO WILD!

5. Explore. Go with your friends and find at least one new place that you have never been before. Even if your college is surrounded by nothing exciting, attempt to find something and make it exciting. You know you’re going to miss that place when you leave.

6. Don’t get too stressed about your classes. You have more important things to focus on! But at the same time, don’t let senioritis take over to the point of not even wanting to try. Find a balance and stick with it!

7. Let go of any people who are negatively affecting your life. This is the time when you can finally realize who should be in your life and who shouldn’t be. Don’t stick with people who are just going to bring you down. It’s not only a waste of time, but it also gives you unnecessary problems.

8. Don’t freak out about your post-graduation plans. I know this is tough to follow, but if you get overly panicked about your future, you won’t be able to calm down enough to actually focus. Just know that basically every senior in college goes through the same thing, and you’re not alone. You’ll figure it out soon enough.

9. Immerse yourself in things that you love doing. Whether you have a hobby that you enjoy, or a certain activity, do as much of it as you can. It’s really important to enjoy yourself because that will make you happy. Plus, you’ll have more free time now than you will after college, so use it up!

10. Just be you. By now, you’ve pretty much found yourself for the most part, so don’t ever try to be someone that you’re not. Go through life day to day and be as true to yourself as you can be. You’ll feel so much happier by just simply being yourself.

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30 Ways To Change Your Life in 2015

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This is the last month of 2014, which means a new year is coming soon. While some people create lists of resolutions that they never even end up looking at ever again, I decided to reflect upon the different ways that anyone can change their life for the better in 2015. While this isn’t necessarily a list of specific resolutions, this is instead a list of actions that you can take and apply to your own life. So make it a goal to achieve some of these things (or maybe all of them!) in the upcoming year, and see how much your life shifts towards positivity.

1. Leave the past behind you. If you’re constantly living in the past, how are you ever going to reach the future? It’s okay to reference the past once in awhile, but never ever let it hold you back. Keep looking forward.

2. Turn all negative thoughts into positive ones. “I can’t do this” is never an option. Once you start thinking positively, you will soon start to feel like a more positive person. In turn, you will find yourself accomplishing more than you could have ever imagined.

3. Think outside the box. Stop being stuck in your old ways of thinking. Think about things from a different perspective and your life will become a lot more interesting.

4. Do something that scares you. If you never face your fears, how will you ever grow? Start off with something small, like maybe talking to that boy or girl that you like. Eventually you can face a bigger fear, like going bungee jumping, or something totally insane and out there.

5. Don’t put up with people who don’t treat you well. If you’re in a relationship with someone who isn’t treating you with the respect you deserve, either leave them, or talk to them about it. If they aren’t going to change their ways, you need to get yourself out of this situation because you’re better than that.

6. Treat others with kindness. We all know the saying, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. We all need to live by this saying because the world would be such a better place. Be nice to everyone, even to those people who might not be your best friends. It’s better to greet an enemy with a friendly, “Hello”, than to throw a bunch of hateful comments at them.

7. Do good deeds. Volunteer your time to someone in need. Whether it be a charity, or a family member, it’s important to help those who are less fortunate, or who are struggling with something. Not only will you feel good doing it, but you’ll make the other person feel amazing as well.

8. Believe in yourself. Stop telling yourself that you’ll never amount to anything. Stop telling yourself that you’re not good enough. You are the first person who needs to believe in you, so you better get on it. You will have a bright future if you do so.

9. Stand up for what you believe in. Stop letting others lead you in directions in which you don’t want to go. You don’t have to agree with everyone just to be on their good side. Don’t be afraid to go on your own path with your own thoughts. You have your own mind, use it the way you want to use it!

10. Actually work towards your goals. Don’t make a list of goals and cringe each time you look at them. You can achieve any goal as long as you keep working hard. Don’t try to take the easy route. Work harder than you ever have in your entire life and you’ll be surprised by how far you will go.

11. Dream big. The difference between incredibly big dreams and realistic dreams is that if you go with the latter, you’ll be playing it safe. No dream is outside of your reach as long as you believe in it.

12. Be grateful for the people who have stayed in your life. When all is lost in life, take time to think about everyone who has stuck by you through everything. Those people are your true friends/family, and they care about you a whole lot. Be grateful for them, because you’re incredibly lucky to have them.

13. Never doubt your abilities. Stop comparing yourself to others, and realize that you are actually amazing at what you do. You’re the only you that exists in this world, so with that in mind, do what you do best. You are talented in your own way.

14. Stop procrastinating. Whether it be work for school or your job, or starting a fitness goal, you need to stop saying “oh, I’ll do it later”. DO IT NOW. If you wait until later, you’re just wasting more time. You’ll feel a lot more proud of yourself if you start everything right now, instead of holding off.

15. Fix broken friendships. Are you and your best friend falling apart? Instead of letting it happen, try to communicate with each other about what has gone wrong. If you are meant to be in each other’s lives forever, you will find a way to work things out. Don’t let yourself lose the people who are most important to you.

16. Fall in love with the world. With all the terrible things that occur in this world, some may find it nearly impossible to have positive thoughts about the world. But if you find at least one thing you love about this world, or even just your country, it will make living life that much better.

17. Let things happen on their own. Stop trying to control every little thing. You cannot always make things happen or prevent things from happening, sometimes they just have to happen on their own. Almost everything happens for a reason, which is why you need to just let things be.

18. Appreciate your family more. Even if you’re not very close with your family, you should be incredibly grateful that they are in your life. You’re connected to them in a way that is different from everyone else, which is a special bond that no one can take away. They will always be there for you no matter what.

19. Don’t stress out too much. If you spend all your time stressing out about every tiny thing, then you’re missing out on life big time. Relax. You are capable of anything and everything. If you take some deep breaths, and try to calm down, you will actually have better success. So try not to freak out.

20. Acknowledge your strengths. How often do you sit down and think about everything you’re good at? Probably not very often. This is important to do because it will ultimately give you a lot more motivation. Everyone is good at something, so it’s important to take the time to realize your abilities.

21. Also acknowledge your weaknesses. It’s also important to think about things that you need to work on. It’s okay to have weaknesses; that’s what makes us human. But it’s always possible to work on turning those weaknesses into strengths. You can always become a better version of yourself.

22. Smile more. A lot more. Smile the moment you wake up in the morning because you have so much to smile about. Even if you’re going through a rough time, you can find a positive in the sea of negatives. Smiling is important because this simple gesture makes you feel better mentally, emotionally, and physically, and it’s very contagious in public. 🙂

23. Go on adventures. Stop sitting in your living room watching movies with your friends or going to the same mall every weekend. Go on a road trip, go to a different town, or even just go  to a different mall. If you change things up, life will be a lot more exciting and fulfilling.

24. Sing in the shower. This may seem like a goofy one, but trust me, it’s crucial to sing in the shower. It’s been proven that singing in the shower releases stress! Plus, everyone is a superstar in the shower, so go ahead and give yourself your own personal concert. You sound amazing!

25. Get more sleep. Going to bed at a reasonable hour might not sound fun, but it’s important in order to be healthy. If you get a good amount of sleep every night, you’ll feel a whole lot better, and you might not even need to chug all that coffee in the morning.

26. Eat healthier and exercise. I know that most times, chocolate sounds a lot better than carrots, but you have to take care of yourself. It’s okay, to indulge every once in awhile (hey, you can’t deprive yourself!), but remember that every healthy choice you make leads you to feeling better overall. You also don’t need to have a gym membership in order to exercise, so don’t make that an excuse. Exercise in your room, or the park, or wherever you feel comfortable, and again, you’ll feel a whole lot better.

27. Stop being lazy. This one sort of goes along with exercise. Long story short, stop being a couch potato. While it’s important to let yourself rest sometimes, try not to make it a habit. Go out and do something instead of laying in bed and watching TV all day.

28. Don’t give your time to someone who doesn’t deserve it. Stop wasting your time trying to make someone see the good in you. If they don’t already see it, then they’re either blind, or lying to themselves. Only associate yourself with the people who want to be in your life because you are you. Authentic people are the best kind of people.

29. Meet new people. Meet at least one new person every week (or everyday if you’re feeling ambitious!). This new person doesn’t have to become your best friend, or even a friend at all, but it’s always a good idea to communicate with others, especially people whom you may have never thought about talking to. By being a friendly person, you’ll make yourself and others feel better about the world.

30. Do what you love to do. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise. Even if your talent is something that typically doesn’t give you great money, still do it. It’s better to be poor and doing something you love, than to be rich by doing something you hate. (Yes, I know, we need money to survive, but hey, you can have a side job that makes the money, while you continue to do what you love). You’ll be a happier person if you happily do every single thing that you want to do.

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Why You’re Missing Out On Real Life If Your Phone Is Your BFF

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I’m a communications major, and in one of my classes, we’ve been talking a lot about how technology is destroying our society. While this information is incredibly depressing, it’s also the truth, and many people are ignorant of it.

A major issue in society is the constant use of smart phones. We are always taking pictures for Instagram or Snapchat, we’re always updating our Facebook statuses, we’re always texting….you get the point; we are attached to our cell phones. And while you may be using your phone to talk to your friends, in reality, it’s like your phone is your friend, not the people you’re texting with.

Think about how much time your eyes spend being glued to your phone. I will fully admit that I am one of the humans of this generation who has an attachment to my iPhone, and I can tell you that sometimes I get distracted because I feel the need to check my messages all the time. This is bad!! It takes you away from reality and essentially into a virtual world.

When you’re out with a friend, and you’re texting a different friend, it’s almost like you’re not really there. Make a pact with your friends to keep your cell phones put away when hanging out, and I bet you’ll feel a whole lot different; you’ll actually be able to give each other your full attention…whoa, what a concept!

If you’re out to dinner with your family and you Instagram your plate of food, or even worse, a selfie with your plate of food, then I just “literally can’t even”. Who gives a crap what your dinner looks like? Who is that going to benefit? Do you feel good posting pretty pictures of your meals? Unless you’re a professional photographer, then gtfo please. Put the phone away and enjoy your food with your family.

Okay, let’s talk more about selfies for a second. Again, I will admit to being a part of this, so I’m not trying to be a hypocrite. But I definitely make sure I don’t overdo the selfies. Some people take selfies EVERYWHERE. Like just stop now please. Again, if you’re with people, and you’re getting distracted by your phone because you want to take the perfect selfie and have to retake it 15 times, then you need to re-prioritize. Instead of focusing on perfecting your selfie, put your phone away and enjoy whatever activity you are doing.

My phone actually sometimes drives me crazy. Sometimes when I’m texting several people at once, I get annoyed and don’t feel like answering anymore, but a part of me feels like I have to or else I come off as a rude person. This is what society has come to. Imagine a time without all this technology…I bet people actually communicated in person 24/7! (So weird, right?!)

Communication is important in our world. It’s a necessary thing in order to connect to one another. Real life connections are crucial because they allow for a more positive environment. Think about the different ways people communicate through text. We think it’s easier to say certain things through text, and while this may be true for certain circumstances, it’s also very false. Take a breakup, for example. Now, do you really think it’s okay to break up with someone through text message? From personal experience, I can say that, no, it’s not okay. This is because text messages don’t allow us to see facial expressions or hear a tone of voice, so we misconstrue things. We might think the person is speaking in an angry tone of voice but, in reality, they could just be trying to send you texts in a calm manner.

Long story short: face to face communication is the best and we have to make sure that we don’t lose that. So try to limit the time you spend on your phone, especially when you are around other people. Let’s turn this society around!

P.S. I just realized that this was totally a blog post of me ranting but that’s okay, I hope you enjoyed it!

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