As 18- to 25-year-olds, we feel like we rule the world, that everything can and should go our way. If it doesn't, we fall into this major pit of despair, and half the time, completely give up. I'm here to ask one question: Why? Why do we feel like it's OK to justify all the crappy things we do, and let others do to us? There are a lot of little things I could nitpick about, but here are some major themes I continuously see with people my age and even younger and older that they do nothing about. I'm not here to say that I'm perfect because I am guilty of all the following. I do know that I've learned a lesson from all of these cruddy things that might be of help to others.
1. Bad relationships
This may not be considered a habit to some, but when I see people continuously enter the same bad relationship with the same person, I consider it a habit. These are some of my favorite excuses for these "relationships":
"You don't understand us." Yeah? Well, I've been trying for the past seven months you've been together. All I understand is that 90 percent of the time that you're crying, it's their fault.
"We just need more time to figure it out." Three years of a crappy relationship isn't enough time for you to recognize it's not gonna work?
"He/she has a bad past." Your past shouldn't define how you treat a significant other. You should want to treat them better than you had been treated. If they don't do that for you, then get out.
2. Piling on debt
As much as you think you need a new car, the best apartment, and the best clothes, you don't. At this age, it is absolutely crucial that we can save money where we can. Credit cards? Yeah sure ... one is fine, but when you are using credit cards to pay off other credit cards, you're in trouble. Credit cards are a slippery slope that many students fall down time and time again. It may seem like easy money now, but when those debt collectors come knocking at your door, it's going to be hard driving them away.
3. Calling out of work/skipping class
When it's not necessary at all. I learned this one the hard way sophomore year. Oh, I don't feel like going to class? Not going to go, they'll never notice. Work? Nah, not today. Turns out your professors/managers do notice, and they will make sure you suffer the consequences for it. The bottom line is it's just being lazy if you're not sick or dealing with some sort of emergency or family issue.
4. Putting yourself down
This one is near and dear to my heart. Our worst enemy is often ourselves. We are our own biggest critics, and I know I drag myself down probably more often than necessary. If you put yourself down, you're opening the gate to allow others to do the same to you. Don't let that happen ever. Physically, mentally, emotionally, whatever it is, we are all unique. That is such a gift that sometimes we have to step back and find in ourselves. Don't let anyone take that away from you because you were fearfully and wonderfully made.
These are just four of the many, many things I could have chosen to elaborate on and question. We all have choices to make. We can make bad ones, good ones, and life-changing ones. Mistakes happen, and if you learn from them, well, that's called a life lesson. I'm thankful for my family, friends, and coworkers who help me get by and learn, and you should all be, too.Take a step back from what you've been doing in your life, and re-evaluate the people in it. If they aren't pushing you toward a better future, don't even bother. If they are, say thank you, love them, and keep them around. They are few and far between.