Quintessential Caveats: Facing and Embracing the Quarter Century

In 15 minutes, I turn 25 years old (I know, the big two five) T-W-E-N-T-Y- F-I-V-E, scary stuff *dabs imaginary sweat off of brow*. As a child, I defaulted into believing that by age 25, or somewhere around it, you pretty much had life figured out and anything beyond 30 was dirt old. Now, as that fully grown 25 year old adult (or so I thought with my prepubescent brain), I can attest to the fact that life is never really figured out, it’s lived. And while living, you learn, you grow, you love and you be: become one step closer to the person that God designed you to be. Well, that’s at least the goal, right?

Turning 25 also caused me to think, what is so significant about this year? What makes it part of the “unofficial” milestone club? Lets think. One, twenty-five is halfway between 20–30. Why is that important? Well, it has been noted in our westernized society that our 20’s are the most crucial decade in our lives. In fact Meg Jay, clinical psychologist, gave a TED talk in 2013 titled “Why 30 is not the new 20” which details the importance of twenty-somethings beginning to plan for their futures in their twenties and not to treat it as a “throwaway” decade. See that TED Talk here .

Now, I generally tend to agree with the points Jay makes; however, I can’t help but pay more attention to the looming undertones of doom and gloom that drown out the validity of her points regarding the importance of preparation in your 20's.

The idea that if you happen to not be where you planned to be by the age of 30, means that you’re starting late or you’re “behind the curve” is honestly an unrealistic expectation in this day and age. And the idea that we should be millionaires by the age of 30 is also an unrealistic expectation. Social media has exacerbated the notion of instant gratification. Everything is at the touch of our fingertips on these lovely devices we fit in our purses and pockets — except for the backstory; except for the many years, hours, hard work, sweat and tears it takes to obtain “success”. Even Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, who at 33 years young has a net worth of $63.7 billion, has not gotten there scot-free; among many of the other greats we admire today including Oprah, J.K. Rowling, and Magic Johnson, to name a few.

So then how exactly do you survive and thrive in your 25th year?

See my list below:

1. Intuition is EVERYTHING

As a empath, nurturer and wearer of my heart on my sleeve, it is very easy for my emotions to rule when making decisions. If you also can relate, keep reading. More often than not, leading with emotions is a good way to end up hurting yourself and possibly others in the process.

Every time you face a decision, there is a feeling inside of you that will nudge you in the direction you should go. Some call it your intuition or discernment. I also reference it as The Holy Spirit. Listen to this nudge. It will save you lots of time & energy-both of which we do not have an endless supply of.

2. Bend do not Break

Many a time, just this year alone, your girl has been played like violin. People who want something from you or who only occupy space in your life to drain you and not uplift should be immediately identified and terminated from your life. We are all bound to experience hardships in life-career, family, health, love, etc. It is imperative to remember that your circumstances should never define you or your future. Take heed from the lessons life teaches you, so you don’t have to keep repeating the lesson over and over again. Like the diamond, you must be put under pressure to shine.

3. Can’t should be part of your vocabulary

So, Alessia Cara’s, “Here" comes to mind. As you get older, it’s okay to come to terms with the fact that you don’t enjoy the things you once did. It’s also okay to say “no” when you’re heart is not into something. Don’t be afraid to exercise the necessary boundaries that need to be in place for your self-preservation.

On the flip side of that, don’t hesitate when you see something you’d love to do as well. GO FOR IT!

4.Faith Over Fear

“Faith is the currency for crazy dreams”. I heard that quote one Sunday morning at service and it stayed with me. If you let fear rule your life, you’ll never accomplish your dreams. If you let the voices of doubt creep up and rule, you’ll cripple yourself, your talents and your gifts that you were meant to share with the world. I often reflect back on the famous Marianne Williamson quote, “ …Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone…”.

5. Iron Sharpens Iron

Be smart and selective about who you let into your space. This bible verse from Matthew 7:15 comes to mind: "Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheeps clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.

Surround yourself with loving, supportive, kind people who will also hold you accountable and push you to be greater.

6. Know Yourself, Love Yourself

Self Explanatory, no?

Photo Credit: Instagram:@elleirarose