If you’re anything like me, your most unforgettable college moments happened outside of the classroom — save a few exceptions. During my junior year, I took a global studies course to fulfill a requirement. There were about 30 students in the class and most everyone was an upperclassmen. On the first day of class, the professor proposed a question: “If you could do anything, what do you want to do after college?”
In my mind, my dream was already solidified, but I didn’t blame the students who said they weren’t quite sure yet. What seriously took me aback was the response that came from some of the female students.
Not one, not two, but three girls answered that their post-college dream was to be a housewife. Even after walking out the door over an hour later, I could not stop thinking about what they had said. A person's 20s is such a unique time — why spend it catering to someone else?
Create your own dream.
There’s nothing wrong with gleaning enjoyment from baking a delicious pineapple cupcake or keeping a tidy home, but when you lose sight of yourself while working to please a man, something seems amiss.
Every woman is entitled to her hopes and dreams, and college is the perfect time to shape them. Your dream might not be easily attainable. It may be something about which you daydream in obsessive, extreme detail.
Are you afraid to chase something other than a man? Stop that. Last time I checked, we weren’t boy-crazy teens anymore. Ambition shouldn’t be a turnoff for men, and if it is, toss him to the wayside. If anything, ambition should be a turn on. No man should desire for you to depend on him for everything, including dreams.
Independence becomes hard to come by.
More than likely, your 20s are when you leave your dorm room behind, move out of your parents’ house and finally get a true taste of the real world. It’s a pivotal time; don’t sacrifice it because you think rushing to play house with your boyfriend will make your life complete.
Make decisions now, even if they are a bit selfish. You’re only supporting yourself, so take advantage of the freedom. As soon as you’ve stashed away enough cash, travel spontaneously. Splurge on a pair of gorgeous pumps you’ll only wear a few times. Quit the mediocre, well-paying job for the job that will make you happy — even if you'll just be scraping by.
Depending on how you choose to live your life, this kind of independence may not be available forever. So, before you tie yourself down with apron strings and subject yourself to the duties of a home, exhaust the perks of independence.
There’s always time to settle down.
Facts show that people are not only living longer, but also marrying later. Rather than rushing into the next chapter of your life, enjoy the one you’re currently experiencing.
Sure, I want to settle down someday, but I would rather establish myself first. Before I fully commit to another person, I would like to be financially stable and content with my life. Rather than settling for the sake of security, give yourself time. Become completely in tune with yourself so you can put you on track to becoming who you want to be. Plus, studies show that women make more money if they wait until after 30 to get married.
Take a deep breath while navigating how to support yourself. You may be lonelier than ever before, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to cling to someone else for support. Create your own path and enjoy it. You’ll never get your 20s back, so make some mistakes while you can. There will be time for the rest.
Photo credit: Showtime/Shameless