There are some things you won’t understand until you’ve matured past your twenties and thirties and have the benefit of both experience and hindsight.
That in mind, Professor and writer Nyasha Junior put out an open call for advice on Twitter, saying she only want to hear from women who have put in at least four decades on this little blue planet. She asked, “If you are a 40+ woman, what one piece of advice would you give to your 20-something self?”
The advice that came rolling in in regards to relationships, jobs, self-care, and the absolute certainty that you should wear sunscreen every damn day.
He’s Not Worth It
Everybody seemed to want to tell their younger self that the person they’re agonizing over and waiting on will almost certainly not be The One. If someone is giving you the run around, it’s because they’re not moving towards you. Let them go, and concentrate on yourself. It’s easy to get caught up in the drama of it, but if someone is making you feel small, unimportant, or messing with your head, they’re demanding too much from you and not giving back. DUMP HIM. OR HER.
If you find yourself waiting for someone to call, the relationship is already doomed.
— Marisa Carroll (@MarisaJudeHere) September 16, 2018
A lot of women say stand up for yourself early and often, and don’t be afraid to to list and guard your accomplishments. Too many young women give away credit and don’t even get it. Your career path may change and shift a lot over the next few decades, but know what you do has value. Also, save some money. Even if it’s just a tiny amount, start saving now. You’ll learn to manage money better as you age, but even a small nest egg could make a big difference in the future.
Write your name on the bottom of every document you produce at work, when volunteering and keep a copy for yourself. Keep track of every accomplishment, no one else will.
— Dat Historian, BA MA M1 (@AbenaKJohn) September 17, 2018
If anybody tells you you need to bide your time or wait your turn, they’re lying. They never intend to give you a chance & 100% will let someone who hasn’t paid their dues jump the line ahead of you. Go somewhere where people aren’t trying to put you in your place.
— Caissie St.Onge (@Caissie) September 16, 2018
Have Some Fun
More than anything, it seems like women over 40 recommend you travel in your twenties. Things will get even more complicated, and seeing the world is a great way to broaden your horizons and build depth in your character. It’s also very fun, which you should be having. Take photos! That doesn’t seem like something a woman in her twenties needs prompting on, but it’s a nice reminder that all these selfies you’re taking now will be cherished memories in future.
1. Be less afraid to work for your own happiness.
2. Go on vacation and take cute pictures.
3. Stop thinking so much about the man you love, either he is yours or he isn't, it isn't much you can do to change that.
4. Go ahead and try, the worst they can say is no.
— Blair LM Kelley (@profblmkelley) September 16, 2018
Take Care Of Yourself and WEAR SUNSCREEN
Whether it’s eating well, exercising, or going to therapy, the sooner you start working on yourself in a healthy way, the better. But you should enjoy where you’re at, too. It’s cool to love your body and your brain, so start now. The flaws you think you have will not be a big deal to you one day very soon, so enjoy yourself. Get naked. Every woman had a different idea of caring for your body looks like, from yoga to vegetables, but they all seemed to agree that you should protect your skin:
Sooo many people have mentioned sunscreen.
— Nyasha Junior (@NyashaJunior) September 16, 2018
After you turn 40, you’re in many ways the same person you were in your twenties. The core of you, anyway. Lots of women said to trust that person. She knows what’s up. This is your only life and you don’t need permission to enjoy it or pursue what you care about:
Turn down the volume on that voice in your head that says, “Wait.”
— Jacqueline Fellows (@JaxFellows) September 16, 2018
Good advice all around. I am getting naked immediately.