2015: A Year in Review

Well hello everyone, and Happy New Year to you all! Last week, I wrote a blog post about preparing for the new year. With all the hype, I didn’t have much of a chance to reflect on this past year, especially in regards to my blog. Luckily, WordPress created an annual report for me!

Looking back at my blog this year, I wrote 49 blog posts (one for every week since I started blogging) with more than 5,000 views in 27 different countries. For a guy who just decided one day to start writing a random blog about the twentysomething experience, THIS IS SO COOL! So, what better way to reflect back on this past year of blogging than with a recap of my top favorite posts? Reading back, these were the top 25 lessons I learned and wrote about in 2015.

  1. Try something new.
  2. Do something you love, regardless of what anyone else says.
  3. Embrace change.
  4. Celebrate life.
  5. Home is not a concrete term. It doesn’t signify a building or a town, and it’s possible that the idea of “home” will change over time.
  6. You are a person, outside of work.
  7. So much can change in one year.
  8. Life is a roller coaster. What goes up, must come down. And just when you think the ride is over, that’s when you need to hang on the tightest.
  9. Treat Yo Self! (special cred. to Parks & Rec).
  10. Your future self will thank your twentysomething self if you work out, eat healthy, and take care of your body.
  11. It’s unlikely to know everything about yourself. The important thing is to be aware and reflect on who you are.
  12. Holidays as a twentysomething are completely different
  13. You can always change your mind…in everything. Career, friends, Friday night plans. It’s okay to change your mind.
  14. Find meaning in everything.
  15. You can only “grin and bear it” for so long.
  16. Splitting yourself into multiple identities and personalities won’t do anyone any good, especially yourself. Instead, work on congruence: blending all of your selves into one.
  17. Everything in moderation
  18. Ride the wave. If you try and fight it…you’re going to get pushed down.
  19. Money is important, but so are fun times with friends.
  20. Move forward, but don’t forget to look back.
  21. Find a mentor (or multiple mentors).
  22. There is no “right” way into adulthood.
  23. Your passions are the things that keep you awake at night. Follow these things.
  24. Break the awkward twentysomething silence. Believe me, no matter how absurd or embarrassing, you are not alone.
  25. We live, we learn, and we grow.

And with that, from one twentysomething to another, I hope you’ve all had a wonderful start to the new year. With these lessons in mind, I promise there will be plenty more twentysomething posts to come!

And on a related side note, I have some big things coming your way for Twentysomething Months! Make sure to stay on the lookout, and I’ll keep you all posted! ūüôā

With blog love and New Year’s magic,
Michael

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I’m (Mostly) an Adult!

In last week’s post, I wrote about the “right” way to becoming an adult. Historically speaking, this included completing all levels of education (usually only high school), obtaining a full-time job, getting married, establishing a home, and having children. In that order. No kids? Oh well, too bad. Not an adult. Accidentally (or purposefully) got pregnant before marriage? Nope! You didn’t do it “the right way.”

Well, it’s time to throw all of that out the window, people. Because in today’s world, there isn’t any “right way” to becoming an adult. But this idea really got me thinking. If there isn’t a right way to grow into adulthood, then what does it mean to become an adult? How can adulthood be defined? Because even though I don’t have kids, I’m not married, and I haven’t yet established a home, I still feel very much so like an adult…(says the guy who still watches Spongebob).

So in my mind, here are the twentysomething signs that make me an “adult.”

  1. Having enough money to purchase a cup of coffee when you’re in¬†need of a caffeine boost, and not having to worry about how much of a detriment it will be on your bank account.
  2. …while also acknowledging that a Quad Venti extra-hot soy¬†hazelnut cappuccino is a beverage that should probably only be seen as a “Treat Yo Self,” because that shit ain’t cheap, and it adds up.
  3. Going to the grocery store and being confident that you can make a plethora of relatively decent meals from the ingredients that are scattered all around the store.
  4. Paying bills. A necessarily evil…but I really like my electricity and hot water, so I guess I’ll continue to write those checks.
  5. Eating relatively healthy, or at least understanding and being aware that eating Burger King five times a week is probably not the best option for my body.
  6. Finding a job that you love, or at least having aspects of your job that you know you enjoy.
  7. Working hard, but not too hard. Everything is about balance, especially between work life and personal life. It’s not easy, but it’s so so important.
  8. Realizing that if you don’t “click” with someone on a first date, it’s nothing personal. They just aren’t the right fit for you at that time.
  9. Coffee is preferred over vodka. Most of the time.
  10. Seeing¬†laundry as an unnecessary task, until you realize how much you’ve already spent on underwear just to avoid doing said laundry.
  11. Offering to pay for your friend’s coffee or lunch, just because you can and it’s a nice gesture.
  12. Cleaning your apartment suddenly becomes fun…? And if not fun, you can at least look around afterwards and feel rewarded in your cleaning efforts.
  13. There is a generation younger than me, and they use lingo that I don’t know. I still don’t know what the hell “salty” means, but I’m hip¬†enough to know that it’s kind of an outdated term now. Right…?
  14. Happy hour is the new favorite hour of the week.
  15. You may still call your parents for small adulting-type questions, but that doesn’t make you any less of an adult.
  16. You hear your parents voice in your head almost on the daily.¬†Wear a jacket! Don’t forget to bring an extra pair of gloves!¬†And you realize they were right all along.
  17. You are much more comfortable and confident in your own skin now then you were, say, when you were fifteen. Even though it may not feel that way all the time.
  18. Early weekend mornings can either be seen as a peaceful, quiet bliss, or a time to sleep in, but either way, you praise the person that created the weekend.
  19. Quality over quantity. In almost every aspect of life. You finally understand this rule.
  20. You may not talk to your good friends every single day, but you know that they are always there for you, no matter what.
  21. Life can throw curve balls, but that’s what keeps things exciting.

So regardless of whatever the traditional pathway was, the fact is, that pathway is no longer¬†the pathway. It’s¬†a¬†pathway, for some, sure. But for me, I have twentysomething other ways that make me feel “adult.”