“And every time I try to be, what someone else has thought of me
So caught up, I wasn’t able to achieve
But deep in my heart, the answer it was in me
And I made up my mind to define my own destiny”
-Lauryn Hill, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
Two years ago the name and theme of this blog were birthed after listening to the song above on repeat.
My early to mid-twenties were #strugglebus. I lost myself, then at rock bottom found myself again. They were hard-knock years filled with painful lessons at the expense of my time, values, and self-worth.
During that time I begged God to take me out of my situation, but now I see they made me who I am. He had a purpose in my pain and I am so much wiser because of it.
Durning those years I really didn’t need the head knowledge I had acquired.
I needed guidance and accountability.
I needed someone to acknowledge that life is hard, but sagacious choices and habits make it so much easier.
I needed a “Sister Fran” who told me like it was, but loved me like I needed.
This blog is dedicated to those hard years. To help other Twenty-Somethings who are stepping into the big-bad real world.
Here are some of the lessons I learned and wisdom I hope to pass on to you in every post on this blog:
1| If you don’t define yourself the world and its many abrasions will
The values your parents have don’t pass down to you automatically. You have to work them into your own life. You can’t just let the world take you on a ride. You have to make explicit choices and think about the path that you want to take.
Sagacious Tip | Read The Principle of the Path
Every choice counts.
The little ones, like getting that new shirt with your credit card even though you know you’re broke and the big ones like the man you choose to date.
All your choices culminate in shaping you into who you will be in the future. Don’t just make random choices, make intentional and meaningful ones.
They are that important!
Yes. You will not think about your choices 24/7—That would drive you crazy! But you can try to think about them most of the time and even prepare ahead of time.
The less choices you have the easier it is to make the right ones and if choices are already made – like automatic savings or even meal prep, it’s even easier. I talk about this more in #7.
2| Get to know yourself
What mark do you want to leave on the world?
Take 5 minutes and think about this simple but complex answer. Once you answer it, why settle for less?
Define it. Create it. Establish it. And never settle!
Your twenties are the perfect time to find who you are, what you stand for, and your personal style.
Stop following the fickle trends and make your own.
Learn what you like AND don’t like.
Find your strengths and promote them! Evaluate your weaknesses and develop them!
List out your priorities and stick to them. Live your best life and be your best self.
All of that is so much easier said, then done.
It’s been a winding and tiresome journey as I have learned to define myself [and I am still on it], but it’s worth every step in the right direction.
3| Financially prepare
Start reading personal finance blogs and personal finance books–RIGHT NOW!
If you are in college take a personal finance class if they offer it.
Money illiteracy will break you! Money runs the world and if you don’t know how to control it, it will control you.
The most important things you can do financially prepare for the unexpected and save for everything else. Check out this awesome post to get you started.
Thank me later!
Sagacious Tip | Financially prepare and save— simple things are always the hardest things to do.
4| College ain’t for everybody
Make sure you know without a shadow of a doubt what you want to do with your life before you begin spending money on your education.
If you have no idea, take a year off and figure it out or if you have the money ( and only then) pay for a year or two of general classes to have under your belt.
Figure out if running your own businesses or even finding a trade would be a better use of your time and resources.
Don’t go to college because our society encourages you to! So many people have found success without even a year of college.
Find your passion and then work towards it. If you are passionate about being a nurse, obviously you need to do some years of college to make that happen. If it’s a degree that can be learned through experience, find the experience—don’t spend the money.
I regret wasting money on my public relations degree. I don’t regret the college experience or all the great people I met from teachers to classmates and good friends.Public relations, marketing, and communications are skilled through experience. The only skills I use on the job now from my 4 years of college are the ones from my internships, not my classes.
I feel a tinge of regret, Every day I work my second job to pay off my student loans early.
Experience is better than head knowledge, certificates, and degrees in almost every job. Education can guide you as I hope to do with this blog, but you can read about things all day and never know anything until you experience it.
Sagacious Tip | Figure out what you want to do in life and then determine if you need education or experience to achieve it.
5| Relationships are important to your growth and happiness
Relationships are your lifeblood! Don’t find out their value too late!
I suck at relationships. It’s usually me and never them. Well maybe, haha!
I just expect too much out of people. I had this crazy idea that my friends, boyfriends, and family had to think just like me or I would be persuaded to think like them, which was usually below my standards.
I never thought just to choose better friends/men or to just accept people as they were with no strings attached. I’ve lost a lot of relationships because of my mindset and even more because I didn’t see their importance to my bigger goals.
Loneliness gives you time to think about these things and reflect on the fact that relationships are vital to your happiness. You need people and “independence” ain’t all cracked up to be.
Sagacious Tip | Open yourself up to people, it’s gone hurt sometimes, but the good people you eventually find will be a healing balm to your soul.
6| You can’t change people, but you can change yourself
I have tried all my life to change people. I’m not sure why I acted so foolishly, but some lessons are just really hard to learn.
This is a work in progress, [And probably will always be] but I finally have loosened my grip on pride enough to start asking myself to change. What good is it to focus on what you can’t change, put all your energy into what you can.
The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
As it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
If I surrender to His Will;
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life
And supremely happy with Him
Forever and ever in the next.
It’s only when you change yourself that people will then change. They will see you differently or you will learn to see them differently.
7| Discipline and good habits will take you far
I started Life Prep lifestyle two-in-a-half years ago to get myself back on track after reaching rock bottom. It was a lot more disciplined than what I do now, but it completely changed my life.
To truly become better you have to discipline certain aspects of your life and change your bad habits. There is really no other way around it, besides getting a rich husband… 😗
Stop seeing discipline as a bad word. Actually, let’s just replace it with a better word.
Choose to be better than you were last year and don’t ever stop.
You gotta change your mindset about principal things:
- How you spend your time
- What you value
- Who you are
I made an extreme effort and it paid off. I’ve been slacking a lot lately, but I am still getting dividends from my prior discipline.
Just do it, click Start Here on the menu to begin your journey with me! 😇
Evaluate the ReEducation:
- Find yourself. Define Yourself. Be Yourself. #easiersaid
- Understand the importance of human relationships
- Go for experience, its the best teacher you will have
- Change your view of discipline: Betterment [ not the investing app, but I totally recommend them]