The Twenties: A Time to Deal

Aaah the twenties! Such a formative decade, full of ups and downs. Full of growing pains. This blog is all about chronicling my life as a twenty something and my lessons learned. Hopefully, all you twenty somethings can relate to the embarrassing moments, life lessons, love mistakes, job woes and friendship growing pains, I divulge each week and that you find them to be both entertaining and inspiring.

Awhile ago, I heard someone say something that piqued my interest. They said something along the lines of,” Your twenties are a time to work through all the issues you’ve developed since childhood, grow and learn how to take the good into your adulthood.”

Here’s what I took from that statement, your twenties are a great time for counseling, whether unofficial or official. I don’t say this in humor or in jest. Get some counseling, whether with a professional in an office with a leather chair and polished furniture, at the foot of the bed with your head in your bible or in long talks with a trusted friend. Start learning to deal with things now. Whatever that looks like for you, start processing through the last twenty something years of your life and deal with stuff.

Twenty Something Advice (for Anybody):

“Your twenties are a great time for counseling, whether unofficial or official.”

Between the ages of 20 and 29, you are kind of in the in between. You’re no longer legally a minor, bending at the word of whatever adult is in charge, but you’re not quite an adult yet either. You’re still figuring out how to balance work life, bills, travel, family and friends. You’re taking baby steps, but steps nonetheless, on the road to becoming a full fledged adult. Why not use your “in between” to take the stuff that’s happened to propel you forward?

Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the sun.”  Whether you are a spiritual person or not, you can still find some relevance in this statement. This verse and really this whole chapter explains that there is a time for everything under the sun. I guarantee you, as a twenty something year old, you probably have your share of baggage, little secrets and parts of your story that aren’t so pretty. There’s a time to deal and to tear down old walls, and that time my friends, is now.

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Each of us has a story. Maybe your childhood was all bunnies and roses. Maybe it wasn’t. Maybe college for you was full of nothing but studying, acing classes and volunteering in the community. Or maybe it was full of heartache, wreckless nights, and stories you may never feel quite comfortable sharing with your future spouse. Whichever is true for you, it’s okay. It really is.

The best service you can do yourself and the world around is to use this time in your early adulthood to grow, to mend, to learn how you think and why you think that way, to understand your triggers, to reflect on how your parents’ shortcomings or struggles may have affected you, to heal from past hurts, to figure how who you are and who you want to become.

On the path to becoming who you are meant to be, you have to first deal with the person you have become. Take sometime to reflect. Take a little rest and relaxation to deal with what life has handed to you. Sometimes reflecting back helps you find the strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

– Stephkt

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Do Your Own Thing

I once had a boyfriend tell me the most profound thing. It’s been a few years so my memory may be a little fuzzy, but to paraphrase, he said, “Stephanie, I am always with people, but you, you do things on your own a lot. I am not like that.” Neither he nor I probably understood the weight of the that statement at the time.

I am pretty sure I actually took it as an insult. My thought process probably went something like, “Is he calling me a loner? Hey, I have friends and plenty of them! I am a very social person. Is he calling me anti-social? I get along easily with most people.” Pause. Hold the phone. Hit the breaks on my overly sensitive 20-year-old brain. Luckily, my perspective has shifted since then and I’ve matured to see things differently.

The truth is, my boyfriend at the time was right. He saw something in me that I didn’t see or wasn’t willing to see, my ability to forge my own path and do my own thing. While I consider myself to be an outgoing person, I also have a little bit of introvert blended in my personality as well. Sometimes it feels great to go out with a group of friends and spend time together, but other times, it feels so good to spend time at home on the sofa listening to music, resting or writing (guilty as charged at the moment). I had never thought of myself as someone who liked to be alone until someone else pointed it out, and he was right!

Twenty Something Advice (for Anybody)

“What is in other people’s minds is not in my mind. I just do my thing.” Audrey Hepburn

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In a social media obsessed world where everyone knows what everyone else is doing at every moment, I take solace in quiet. I love the moments of peace in the mornings when I go for a run. I love roaming around a book store for hours in search of finding new writers to inspire me. I like to turn up my music and get lost in the beat while I’m cooking a meal. We all need these moments of solitude to think, to recuperate, to channel our thoughts. It becomes an issue when we can’t take time to ourselves and become more concerned with what everyone else is doing.

I challenge you for the year 2014 to spend time on your own. Get to know yourself. Get in touch with your inner voice and find some peace and quiet. Unplug your phone and disconnect from social media for days or weeks at a time. Having friends and being social is a good thing, don’t get me wrong. However, too much of anything isn’t good for you.

Don’t be afraid to go your own way. The way to find your truest desires and dreams is by getting to know the person staring back in the mirror. Make sure to nurture and honor that person. Don’t be afraid of a little solitude. As Audrey Hepburn said, do your own thing. Because that is the only way you will live a life worth living.

-Stephkt

Inspiration from an Old Friend

Hi Blogesphere!

I am trying to make it a habit to get on here a lot more. I love writing so you think that this wouldn’t be a problem. The truth that I have found is that the more positive, beautiful things and people I surround myself with, the more beauty I have within myself and the more complete I feel.  The more complete, happy and whole I feel, the more I have to write about. Like attracts like, as the saying goes. I try to surround myself with positive, honest good spirited things and people so that I can reflect this back to the world.

One person who I have found to have so much depth and honesty of heart is an old friend from Oklahoma State University, Adley Stump. Adley is best known to the world as a season 2 contestant on The Voice earlier in 2012.  To me, she is the curly haired, bubbly blonde from Tulsa, Oklahoma with the biggest heart for other people.  I met Adley my first year at OSU as a sophomore.  She was a junior and was the president of a club called To Write Love on Her  Arms.  TWLOHA is national not for profit organization that works to raise awareness about issues such as depression, cutting, bullimia and aneroxia.  Truthfully, it serves as means to connect any person who has struggles in life. When I first came to OSU I was dealing with a depression of my own and a recently diagnosed bipolar parent.  I was struggling with feelings of being alone, depression, unforgiveness and guilt.

All these feelings brought me to a TWLOHA meeting one night and there I met Adley. Adley and TWLOHA were amazing.  The people and the community I met there were so inspiring.  I found a place to share my grievances and also to learn compassion through hearing other people’s pain. Adley, like everyone in TWLOHA, had her story of pain, struggles and triumph.  I had so much respect for her after she shared her life story of struggles and lessons learned. Adley has always been a friend who I look up to for her ability to be raw and real while still loving others so well.

I recently saw a blog post she wrote on her website (adleystump.com) and to no surprise of my own, she has inspired me once again. Adley is what I like to call a beautiful soul.  Feel free to check out her website at adleystump.com and listen to her music.  See for yourself what I am talking about and read her a little bit of her post below!

“DO you love growing, learning, making mistakes and figuring out what it takes in your soul to pick yourself back up and keep going? Do you know how forgiveness feels, how to admit when you’re wrong, and how to create new ideas? If you’re living your life all for some dangling carrot in the future that you may or may not ever get or find, and you hate the grind and the process, but expect to love it “someday,” well, what if you don’t get “someday?” What if you just have today and these years with your family and friends and you didn’t take time to go out and enjoy your life, have nice dinners, go skiing, and create the “middle moments” that turn into memories you treasure later in your life.

My point is simply this, work HARD for what you want, but love the grind. Love the work it takes to get there, love people, and love the journey. Or you may be wasting your life, and precious, precious time.”

Stephkt