This is a Young Professional Advice from Friends post written by Cristina Reyeros at Ambition in the City. YPAF is a collection of voices from different ages, places and industries to share advice on starting off and being twenty.
Alive or Just Breathing: Tips for Young Professionals
Recently I was approached by the lovely Katie Robinson, of asktheyoungprofessional, to write a post that would speak to Katie’s young professional audience around the adventures of adulthood and starting a career. As I approach my 30’s I look back at my 20’s as a time for exploration, play, and most importantly, self discovery. My 20’s have been for me a time filled with youthful enthusiasm, lots of learning, a few stumbles, and a whole lot of change. I look back at this time and I can honestly say I have lived these 9 years to the fullest. I have no regrets and have used this time to discover who Cristina really is. How will you use your 20’s to uncover the best version of yourself? In this post I hope to offer a few words of wisdom as you set forth on your path to greatness. Your 20’s should be a time of aliveness and endless possibility. Are you alive or just breathing?
Tips For My 20 Something’s
1. There is no invisible clock ticking above your head. Be kind to yourself. If you haven’t figured things out just yet, don’t let the pressures of society get to you. Your twenties are a time to play and be curious. Tap into your interests and give them some room to emerge. Who said you have to stick to just one job or just one career path? Test the waters. Get your feet wet in a few different oceans. Your choices are only as limited as you make them out to be. Embrace choice and you’ll keep moving forward.
2. Trust the process of life. When you believe that there are more possibilities for you then you can even imagine, you draw those possibilities into your body, mind, and spirit. Keep that youthful enthusiasm alive and kicking. Never settle when it comes to your career and life’s purpose. You want to wake each day and embrace the newness and wonder just waiting to be experienced. If you find that your days feel long and drawn out, ask yourself ,”What needs to be shifted in my life?” Be open and honest with yourself, and allow for the universe to bring forth alternative opportunities for joy, happiness, and fulfillment. When you change your mind you can change your life, and in turn the world around you. Never stifle those natural gifts and talents for the sake of a higher paying or more stable career path. Both you and the world might miss out on sharing the uniqueness you were meant to contribute in this life.
3. Step into your power and know when to walk away. It won’t be easy but there will come a time in your career where you begin to ask yourself “Is this what I really want to do for the rest of my life?” Think long and hard and envision your future self. What does he or she look like? What are they doing, and most importantly are they happy? If you find that your future self appears to be in a very different place then where you find yourself in the moment, it might be time to walk away from your present and step into a new future. Embrace choice and keep moving forward. 20 years from now you don’t want to look back on your life and say, “I should have chosen a different path.” Listen to your heart and tap into your future self in the now. He or she has all the wisdom you need to guide you on the right course.
4. Expand your view. Change can be a fabulous thing! Just as we often change our outfits throughout the week with such ease, look at your life in the same way. It is possible to try on alternative views for your life. Look at your current stance on your career and life and play around with other ways you can approach your current reality. When we step fully into another view we allow for new sensations and possibilities to emerge. Allow yourself to embody those sensations and see what’s possible if you just make this small shift in perspective. We are often resistant to making changes out of the fear that tends to come with the unknown. Step fully into the unknown with curiosity and excitement. Try on this new perspective just like you would try on a new outfit at a clothing store. Your freedom and ultimately your happiness are at stake here. If you aren’t willing to try things on for size you will always be left wondering “what if”. You don’t want to be the person that comes back to the mall for that outfit you almost bought and find that it’s no longer in stock. Missed opportunities as well as silenced ambition can lead one to feel stuck and helpless. What are you more excited about then afraid of? Let those feelings of excitement overcome your fear. You can and should do anything you set your mind to.
5. Enjoy this time. Make the most of it by being open, appreciative, and above all fully present. Your twenties are a time for such tremendous growth. Be present and alive in this moment. Notice and acknowledge what’s possible from here and step fully into living each day as your authentic brilliant self.
New York City
“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself.” C. JoyBell C.