As kids, we wanted to be adults. Now that we are adults, we are all craving those little joys of childhood. Adulting is hard. You are burdened with responsibilities that do not even make any sense. For example – documentation required for every new registration is cumbersome. But, you’ve got to do it. There is no other escape. 

In our 20s, we are also expected to make the most of our lives while aggressively working towards creating a secure life and future. Navigating the two goals at the same time is overwhelming, and the journey is full of moments of epiphany. Here are 15 big realizations that hit us hard in our 20s.

1. Your parents are growing old

As a child, we were so fascinated with the idea of growing up that most of us forgot that our parents age with us. And when this realization hits home, all of us begin to value the time we get with our parents. A sense of fear of the inevitable coupled with the desire to make most of the present prompts us to spend quality time with our parents.

2. Work-life balance is not as simple as it sounds

In fact, work-life balance stopped existing ever since work-from-home became a thing. Personal and professional have mingled to birth a hybrid reality that we now inhabit. A perfect work-life balance probably doesn’t exist. Even if it does, it is surely not as simple as we had thought it would be. 

3. It is only about a couple of true friends at the end

Your social circle only has a handful of people who truly care about you. And you know who they are. So many have come and left, but these are the friends who have been by your side through thick and thin. These are the ones that will stay forever. Recognize them, value them, and cherish them. 

4. Nobody has it all figured out

It is okay to not know your passion. Most of us have no clue about what the f*** we are doing. We are just constantly guessing. The journey is more important. The fact that we are trying our best is what matters the most. 

5. Heartbreak is a life-changing opportunity to evolve for good

We all have gone through heartbreaks at one point in time. A broken heart has all this pent-up frustration and energy which, if channelized for good, can be life-changing. The journey to moving on can become the one about self-discovery. And so it has, for some of us.

6. Life is not always fair. It is what it is

Sometimes, we don’t get what we think we deserve. Some of us are super privileged, some of us are not. Life is not black or white. Life is gray. It is not always fair, and we have to live with it. 

7. No relationship is perfect

What you see on the outside is a manufactured reality. The truth is that no relationship is perfect. We are all bound to disappoint each other, and that is okay. 

8. And no relationship would work without efforts

We cannot take the other person for granted. Every relationship is a two-way street, and you cannot expect it to work if it is one-sided.  

9. Rejections are okay

Rejections and failures are normal and not exclusive to us. We have to be okay with it. Each experience is a lesson learned in time.

10. Networking is important

Your batchmate from yesterday has become an important resource for your life today. We all need each other. After all, we are social animals. Networking is pivotal and makes life easier. We cannot afford to be all aloof.

11. It is okay to cut back from toxic friendships and relationships 

Nothing that taxes your mental health is worth it. And if people who are supposed to make life easier are exhausting you every other day, it is okay to cut back from such associations. Prioritizing self-happiness over others is perfectly normal and cool.

12. Looks don’t matter, personality does

We can crush over somebody all we want. But, in the long run, looks hardly matter. It is always about your partner’s personality and your compatibility with them.

13. Nobody really cares 

As Shankar from Tanmay Bhat’s vlogs says, “nobody cares.” It is the ultimate truth. Everybody is looking out for their happiness and busy chasing their goals. And so are you in the end. This is for everybody apart from family and a handful of true friends.

14. Change is the only constant

After multiple experiences and associations with different kinds of people, it is in our 20s that we realize that change is the only constant. And change is important as well. Life has to change for us to grow. Otherwise, we will remain trapped in our comfort zones. And sometimes, we are the ones who need to bring this change for our own sake. 

15. And the hardest one. You have all grown up now that your classmates are getting married

This one hits the hardest. When your social media is flooded with wedding pictures. You see your school and college mates getting married while you are still trying to make sense of your career and life. It is scary af!

Which one hit you the hardest? And how did you deal with it?