Last weekend I had a long chat with one of my good friends about life. Oh, those white wine nights with their deep conversations…
8 ways to improve yourself in your twenties
1 Say yes
To the people who know me it’s no shock when I say I am a total home buddy. I love cozying up on the couch and watching one TV- show after the other. Or just simply hang out at home with my boyfriend. However, I do sometimes get the feeling of missing out on life. Combining those two characteristics has been the debacle of my life for a long time.
2 Be more spontaneous
This section kind of works together with the first one. I am, as we all know, a planner girl by heart. Not only do I plan out my days, I plan out my life. And that is alright because it is who I am and I like it that way. It gives me a sense of security. At the same time, though, being spontaneous once in a while can’t hurt and might also satisfy my adventurous side a bit more.
3 Accept compliments
Who doesn’t love compliments? Especially if you’ve been working hard on something and made an effort. But I have personally always struggled with the right way to accept them. What do you say to the person in return? Do you compliment them back? How do you take the compliment without sounding conceited? Should you just brush it under the table?
I still don’t know the right way to go about this. But I want to make an effort to just say “Thank you” and smile. I think that is genuine and not over the top. Also, I am trying to let the compliments sink in more. Because it is something nice and sometimes you can be proud of accomplishments, efforts or personality traits. As long as it doesn’t make you big headed, why not enjoy it?
4 Start Journaling
Like all teenagers, I used to write in my diary every single day growing up. It started off with me just explaining what had happened that day. Then it became more of an outlet for emotional stress. I mean we’ve all been teenagers once, you know how it was. The diary was a place for trashing the girl who was mean to you at lunch, fantasizing about your crush and overpraising your “best friends forever”. It was heaven.
5 Stop people-pleasing
I used to be better at this. Being direct, outspoken and firm. In the last few years, though, I feel like I have tried to stay away from drama and negativity so much that I have become quite the people-pleaser. Not that it is not a good trait to have. Of course being nice and trying to maintain the good vibes is honorable. On the other hand, though I do need to stand up for myself more. Get back to being honest about my feelings and expectations for the way I want to be treated.
To stop being a people-pleaser I firstly have to let go of the fear that someone is going to be mad at me. I don’t know when I developed that, but it needs to be demolished. I mean you can’t please everyone. That’s a fact. And it’s of no use to stand back like a wall-flower and put your happiness and well-being second. So I will be speaking up for myself more (*she says making the superwoman pose*).
6 Become a kick-ass present giver
Some people are just amazing at giving presents. They remember that conversation you had months before and get you that one book you talked about. How insightful and attentive, right? I on the other hand never know what to get my friends and family for birthdays and holidays. I am just really, really bad at paying attention it seems. This needs to change!
To be more observant and pay attention to gift ideas is not an easy task, though. Because it needs to be done casually, alongside conversations. And in addition to not being the most attentive, I am also really bad at remembering. So lately whenever I have a conversation with a friend and the idea for a present comes to my mind, I secretly type it into my phone. Believe me, it’s working wonders. Now whenever an event comes up, I just open up my little memo app and all the ideas are right there. I love it!
7 Be grateful
To me, it’s very easy to get sucked into the daily life struggles. I mean we all have them, some small some big. Ask my boyfriend and he will gladly tell you how much of a complainer I am. And he’s right. I definitely have the tendency to see the negative. But I have now realized that it stops me from looking at the big picture and appreciating everything I do have.
It’s time to make an effort to be thankful for all of lifes blessings and stop focusing on the negative things. Therefore I want to start telling myself five things I am grateful for every night before I go to bed. This might sound cheesy, but I really think it will change my outlook on life and maybe even make me complain a little bit less.
8 Stand still
This might sound a little spiritual but I do think it can work. In this day and age, we are always on our phone or laptop, working, checking Emails, watching TV etc. etc. I can see it on myself. I have unlearned to stand still and do nothing for a bit. Or maybe I never knew how to do it in the first place. However, I think to be able to put everything in perspective it is highly important to take a moment and let yourself stand still.
Because of that, I want to actively set aside 5 minutes a day just sitting. Without my phone, or any other electronic device on me. Not even reading or doing anything else. Just sitting. Eyes closed, listening inside myself. I’ll let you know how that goes 😉 .