Terrible Twenties

It's time that new parents stop complaining about their toddlers in their "terrible twos". Yes, it's an awkward transition... you're coming into your own. You're beginning to understand that you have choices; all of a sudden learning so much so fast. It is a phase of continual questioning and discovery. Yes the "terrible twos" are a stressful time in ones life, but they've got nothing on the strange and violent behaviours of those pesky, newly independent twenty-somethings. It is the same transition period we all went through twenty years ago... a new independence, so many choices all at once, constant discovery... constant misdirection and mistakes along the way... and a few temper tantrums every once in a while. While most children have their sweet sides, they of course have that "terrible" phase, myself being no exception, but through careful examination and study, I am trying my hardest not to let myself fall into the melodrama and misunderstood anxiousness of the "Terrible Twenties".

In conversations with other early twenty-somethings the toddler whine appears and we are reduced to nothing but crying babies... "I don't know what I'm doing with my life now...", "I wish I was back in school, it was so much easier then trying to figure out where to go from here...", "Why did I spend so much on an education? No one will hire me!...", "He said he would call and he didn't!", "She seemed to really like me but I haven't heard from her... what did I do?". It is exhausting. Many of us twenty-somethings are floating through society without a clear path or anyone to comfort us along the journey. Oh, and those twenty-somethings who came right out of university with a career (accountanting majors...) or significant others (undeserving bastards...), we either glare at with contempt or prod for information about how to achieve what they have.

My theory, all along has been: Who the fuck cares what they have? Who cares that we're floating aimlessly, career-less and relationship-less. I think this is exactly what your twenties are for and anyone who isn't completely depressed about their life is missing out on an experience that builds character and makes for halarious facebook albums along the way. In order to keep this fresh outlook on the time of your life when you will be making the least amount of money you ever will, it is important to remember that things are going to get better, should you choose to tough it out through these early to mid twenties. In order to that, you must have goals. Today, I wrote down my goals in all areas of my life that I think are deserving.

1. Social (Of course it's first.)
My goal here is clear... I've moved back in with my parents after four years of being away at University. Other then just plain staying sane, my goal is to keep in touch with my University friends. It sounds simple, but I have a feeling it will be difficult. People's lives get busy. People drift apart. I don't want that to happen with the people who were with me on my journey to becoming who I really am. So I have listed all the people I care enough about to keep in touch with and I will contact them on a regular basis. And yes, I cut people who I have recently realized weren't all that great. Mostly because I never saw them sober. So maybe they were, but I'll never know.

2. Physical
I got a trainer in June. I am going to keep working with her twice a week and keep going to the gym three times a week solo. I actually enjoy it, so I'm thinking I can keep up with it. It's not the excersize part that's hard for me, it's the not eating crap food after the bar part I suck at. But I'm drinking less, so I do less drunk eating. Cutting back on drinking is the only way I can afford my trainer anyway.

3. Spiritual
I don't know how spiritual this is, but I'm going to give myself more time to read Christopher Moore books. Even if it's just a chapter a night before I go to sleep. It's me time, and that suits my spirit just fine. And I'll be nicer to people. Maybe work on my road rage. I'll drive spiritually.

4. Financial
This one sucks, because anyone who knows me, knows this is my biggest hurdle in life. But here's the plan: Pay off my credit card, and keep it down. Which means putting 40% of my paycheck on it until it's significantly low and then not letting it get maxed out anymore. We'll see how that goes, because honestly, I have shopping issues. Clothes call to me. As do shoes. And purses.

5. Education
My dad is always buying me business books and bugging me to read them. So I'm going to. I'm going to spend my lunch hour at work reading at least 25 pages of whatever he decides to throw at me. Accomplishes many things: enlightenment, building self-confidence in business abilities, shutting up Father.

6. Work
Right now I am only kind of, half in a position I would like to be in. I work for an Indie Newspaper (a very well respected one, mind you), but I am the manager of Distribution and Events. I would like to be full time events, and at a large events company. I would like to stick it out at the paper for 6 months to a year and then try to move on to a full time events position. After my best friend Jess is done her Masters in Montreal we plan to start our own company. We've already started planning, I am hoping we can get it going in 2010 or 2011. Waiting until then, which is a time we will be mentally and financially prepared to start our own company, is a pretty big challenge for me because honestly, I was never one for patience... and patience this will take.

7. Family
I need to spend more time with my cousins. I love them and I don't see them enough. My cousins on my Dad's side are having "Cousin New Year's 2008 Slumber Party". I'm going to organize it. I suggested matching pajamas for all of us. The cousins in their thirties didn't really go for it. Nor did the ones in junior high. None of them did actually.

8. Personal
Since this is pretty open and I have no relationships, ever... I decided to extend financial. I'm going to set aside 10% of every paycheck as a "Move the fuck out of my parent't house already" fund, and put aside 30% for my trip in Novemeber to visit Jess in Montreal. That leaves me 20% (after 40% goes to my credit card) for my "personal" life. Which includes brunches with my gay friends and drinking beer and watching football with guy friends who are undatable. Just reading this makes me feel better about my life already.

So there are my goals. Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic... I think. I will pat myself on the back. And now that they are out there for, I would say my readers but I know generally no one sees this except for me and people who browse through pages and briefly stop and look at pictures of my attractive best friend, but nonetheless, now that my goals are out in the world I feel a sense of responsibility to achieve them. I am now being held accountable by... cyber space, I guess? How about I will just hold myself accountable. I am after all, the only one in control of my terrible twenties, and the path I have laid for myself to escape them in one piece. I hope I read this in eight years and laugh...