Real Life

23 Mistakes That 20-Something-Year-Olds Regret Making

If you’re under 20 or in your early 20’s, maybe you can learn from these mistakes and live a kick-ass decade. If you’re in your late 20’s or beyond, read on and LOL as we reminisce about past mistakes.

1. Trying To Hold Onto To “What Was”

You should already know this as you moved from high school to your next big thing; not all friends stick around for the ride of life. If she’s not texting you back, writing on your Facebook wall or liking your Instagram selfies then she moved on and you should too.

2. Splurging On Beauty Products That You Have No Idea How To Use

And therefore, you probably won’t use them. “I need this $50 cheek highlighter because Vanessa uses it and her face is flawless! I’ll YouTube how to use it so yeah, I’m going to splurge ’cause I know I’m totally going to use it.” Or are you?


3. Not Washing Your Face Before You Go To Bed

I totally understand coming home really late and passing out as soon as your head hits the pillow or cramming until 2AM and literally falling asleep in your textbook. But not washing all that make-up off before you go to sleep is going to come back and bite you later on when you’re in your early 30’s with really wrinkly skin and dark spots. #NotForMe.

4. Wasting Too Much Money On Restaurant Food

The bill for your super-sized martini and summer salad is ridiculous. They didn’t even have to cook anything on your plate and they’re charging you $30. Let’s do some math, if you saved $30 a week on food and drinks, you would have more than $1500 at the end of the year to spend on more exciting experiences–oh the possibilities! Cha-Ching!

Watermelon Citrus Salad

5. Being Health Bipolar

During the day you’re on a low-carb diet but at night you’re out with your girls eating every piece of bread that you see – pizza, bruschetta and late-night grilled cheese sandwiches. Every time you go out is not a “cheat day.” Your body is super confused!

6. Spending Too Much Time At The Club

Some people don’t like to rave every weekend. Maybe some people like their personal space. Some of my friends went to clubs because they wanted to spend time with their friends. But what if their friends were going to the clubs because they thought that’s what their friends wanted? You get it? If you’re a Netflix and cuddles kind of bae, then you do you girl.


7. Being In A Really Long Committed Relationship

This was me, 100%. Dating the same guy for three years was just exhausting, you know? I think the best dating advice I ever got was from my dad (just bear with me). He said, “The things you like at 16 you won’t like at 21. The things you appreciate at 21, you won’t really care for at 29.” He wasn’t even talking about boys actually, but it totally applies. The qualities you want in a guy at 21: super-buff, loves to rave and has a killer man-bun, may not be the qualities you’re looking for in the guy that you want to settle down with. I’m just saying.

8. Or Spending Too Much Time Chasing A Guy Who’s Not Interested In You

You spent $50 on a banging dress, two hours trying to perfectly contour and highlight your face and didn’t eat any pastries for a whole week to prepare for this party that you’ll both be at and he doesn’t even find the time to come over and say hi. You double tap every single one of his Instagram photos, even if it’s a picture of beer and pizza, and he never likes any of your selfies. You rescheduled your mom’s dinner date for his Netflix party but invites over 20 people so you only casually spoke to him while grabbing a drink from the kitchen. He’s clearly not putting in half as much effort as you are so maybe it’s time you move on.

9. Being Addicted To Social Media

You’re supposed to be on a fun girls-night-out party but in-between snapping pictures of your food, your drinks, the cute folded napkins on the table, the cool chandelier and your OOTD, you’re constantly checking your social media notifications so that you don’t miss a life changing message… like Justin Bieber uploading a new selfie.


“I only got 10 likes in the last 5 minutes, do you think I should take it down? Let me take another selfie.”

10. Drunk Texting Or Dialing

Reading text messages the morning after you were hammered is always an eye-cringing experience. You accidently told your uncle that you love him instead of your crush, you told your BFF that you’re the true cat woman and you accidently texted an old friend from high school that you don’t talk to anymore to apologize for cheating off her math exam in grade 9. But they probably won’t even understand that you said because auto correct didn’t feel like helping you last night.


11. Not Travelling

This decade is all about finding out about who you are and what you like. How are you going to know if you’re a travel bug if you don’t get out there? You’re probably uncomfortable travelling on your own before you hit 20, and once you’re in your 30’s you’ll have a lot more commitments to consider before packing up and backpacking around Europe. You don’t have to start with a two-month vaycay to Australia, but maybe take a few road trips with some friends?

12. Hoarding Cheap Trendy Pieces Instead Of Saving Cash

I’m totally guilty of this! The $10 YOLO shirts and patterned, shiny leggings you just had to buy will go out of fashion. You could have saved so much money and invested in something you really wanted, like a Michael Kors purse. Ah, classy and timeless.


13. Not Getting Enough Sleep

Pulling all-nighters to study for an exam, or to finish a huge project, is sometimes necessary and your body will bounce back from that. But staying up all night to binge watch Season 3 of Orange Is The New Black is not a necessity. Netflix is not going to pull the season off in three days so space it out and really enjoy the comedy and avoid the bags under your eyes.

14. Trying To Tan

UV beds are literally killing your skin, at-home tanning lotions are leaving your body full of streaks, tanning sprays will only last for about 24 hours (plus you’re absorbing all of the added chemicals), and of course, frying in the sun is just not worth it. Just stop. Go to the beach, or on romantic walks and catch the sun’s rays plus some valuable Vitamin D organically. Stop stressing, after all, the best glow comes from the inside!


15. Spending Too Much Time Hating Your Nemesis

Even if there is a totally legitimate reason for hating on her (she spread a horrible rumour about you, tried to steal your man, stabbed you in the back, etc.) if you’re going to school with her, she’ll be out of your life in a few years. If she’s a co-worker, chances are that if she’s annoying you, she’s rubbing other co-workers the wrong way too and she’ll eventually end up alone and sitting in a corner during lunch. Just focus on you and on building friendships that’ll keep your social life occupied. Haters going to hate so just take a deep breath and let it go.

16. Letting Boyfriends Get In-between You And Your Bestie

Whether it’s your boyfriend or her boyfriend, if he’s a true jerk everyone will figure it out eventually. There’s no need for World War III here. Just follow our basic girl code: sisters before misters.


17. Not Interning

Internships are like trying on a dress before you purchase it, you get to see what it looks and feels like on you before you commit to it. Most university and college programs offer an internship course so take it! From my personal experience, I thought I wanted to teach, so interned as an elementary school teacher assistant for five months and absolutely hated it. I could be preparing to teach a class about the water cycle instead of spending time doing what I love like writing down all of my mistakes for you to learn from. This one is better, right?

18. Washing Your Hair Too Much

Did you know that in the early 1900’s that it was the norm for people to wash their hair only once a month?! A recent study showed that the majority of people wash their hair five times a week. Hair stylists and dermatologists have long suggested that we are washing our hair too often. Despite our frequent urge to lather up, we need to cut back a bit, not only does daily washing take way too much time, but it removes the important oils that keep our hair healthy, and can dry out and irritate the scalp, leading to the very reason many of us over wash our hair in the first place: dandruff. So, shampoo a little less and introduce dry shampoo and hair oils (coconut, argon or macadamia) to your hair routine.

19. Moving Out Too Early

Unless your parents have you under a strict, unrealistic regimen where you have to wake up at 4AM to scrub the floors, perhaps you should save your money for something a little bit better than a basement apartment with horrible room mates in a questionable part of town. It’s not embarrassing to be 20 and living at home, so take the time to build some savings so you can do it right.

20. Picking The Wrong Roommates

She’s your number one girl to call if you want to go out for drinks but do you really want her walking in-and-out of the apartment at 3AM with a new John Smith every other night? She loves to listen to her music really loudly in the morning for two hours  and she feels like she’s entitled to eat your food, but if you borrow some of her milk you’ll hear about it for the next two months. Do you want to live with someone like that? I didn’t think so. Do your homework, check references and asking tons of questions before committing to living with someone.

21. Thinking It’s Too Late To Pursue Your Dream Career

You’re in university and studying history but realize that you’re actually really into law and can now see yourself becoming a lawyer to A-list celebs. But becoming a lawyer means many more years in school, and you’ve only got one year left in your program. That’s a year that could be spent getting you closer to what you really want to do. It’s never too late to pursue the career of your dreams. You’ll spend more time in school but at least you won’t be giving tours at the museum for the rest of your life wondering “what if?” dream-job_srs27

22. Thinking It’s Too Late To Learn A Skill

There are 10-year-old dancers that can dance circles around me, 12-year-old cooks that can make salmon better than I ever will and 17-year-old singers getting label deals and making my yearly income in a month. So what? Not everyone finds their passion at a young age. Don’t let your ego or negative self-talk that you’re ‘too old’ stop you from learning something that you really want to learn. You might think it’ll be embarrassing being in a beginner’s class at 20, but how about when you’re 30? Or worse, how about never?

23. Trying To Grow Up As Fast As Possible

Slow down! Adulthood doesn’t happen overnight and we should all be thankful for that. Enjoy your 20’s and appreciate what you’ve got going on what right now. You have so much to look forward to in your future!

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