A 20-Somethings Guide to Getting Through The Doldrums

Let’s do an exercise.

Step 1: Get out a piece of paper.

Step 2: Make a list of:

  • Why you’re awesome.
  • What you’re thankful for.
  • Goals or reminders that you would like to set for your future self in the next three months.

Step 3: Hide this list and set a reminder on your phone for three months from now to find this list (also include where you hid it).

This is the same activity that Jenny Blake set up for young creatives at the recent Launch Bonanza event for her new website, JennyBlake.me and Paul Angone’s new book, 101 Secrets for Your Twenties.

You're a rock star postcard

As we celebrated at the Wix Lounge, (founded by Wix.com, a platform for creating beautiful websites) we were also celebrating the wonderful (and scary) years in our 20s. Paul and Jenny both shared tips and insights into what they’ve learned through their own personal journeys.

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Jenny Blake began her talk with a reading from The Parable of the Trapeze by Danaan Parry. “Sometimes I feel that my life is a series of trapeze swings. I’m either hanging on to a trapeze bar swinging along or, for a few moments in my life, I’m hurtling across space in between trapeze bars…the past is gone, the future is not yet here.”

From life after college to launching a new website to attempting her first trapeze class, here are a few highlights from her talk:

Cold feet are just cold feet.

Remember, it’s just nerves and it’s just cold feet. It’s natural, but in the end you just have to take the leap to the next trapeze bar and stop doubting yourself.

Find freedom in commitment.

Whether it’s a new project or trapeze lessons, commit to things that truly matter to you. Enjoy the feeling of taking on new challenges and building relationships on your own terms.

Appreciate your trapeze net.

Who makes up your safety net? Maybe yours consists of a mix of old college roommates, best friends from home, supportive colleagues, and your godmother. Take a moment to appreciate those who give us advice and encourage us to move forward.

Paul Angone

Paul Angone began his talk with his video, Stuff Twenty Somethings Say.

“How do you really do your twenties well?” Here are a few secrets from his new book:

End Obsessive Comparison Disorder.

“I wish I had her job.” “I wish I was as successful as him.” Stop comparing yourself to others. Why is grass greener on the other side? Because of all the manure. You’re not the only one struggling, and although things may seem great on the outside for others, realize that everyone has to deal with their own manure. Remember, if you’re not going to live your life, no one will. There is only one you, and we need more you.

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Don’t worry about being in the wrong job, worry about your job getting the wrong you.

Paul told us a story of how he was at a crowded Starbucks one day when he noticed everyone was staying after they got their coffee to chat with this one older, energetic, incredibly bubbly barista. Paul thought, why is this guy so popular? Paul started to create a back story. “Maybe he lost his job in the real estate crash and had to move back home with his parents.” He noticed the barista limping. “He only has one leg so he has to work at Starbucks,” Paul thought.

It turns out this was all true because this Starbucks employee was Paul’s brother. He was born without a leg, took a low-level job at Starbucks after losing his full-time job, and had to move back home with their parents. Paul had never seen someone put so much positive energy into their work, especially mundane work. What did this teach him? We all have our fair share of crummy jobs; it’s a twenty-somethings right of passage. Always bring the best of yourself to work everyday.

The biggest failure of our twenties would be if we never had any.

Failing is okay. It’s how we learn from our mistakes and continue to move forward that’s important. Oftentimes the best opportunities for greatness are also opportunities for failure, so we can’t let that stop us.

For more secrets, you can purchase Paul’s book 101 Secrets For Your Twenties,  anywhere books are sold or online. 

What are some secrets or advice that you have found helpful in your twenties? Share with us in the comments.

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