20 Life Lessons I Learned in My 20’s

Life Lessons I learned in My 20's

With an impending 28th birthday on my mind, I spent some quiet time this evening reflecting on my recent past.  And I’ve come to realize that my 20’s taught me a lot about life.  So, I figured I’d share a few lessons I’ve learned along the way.

  1. If you’re smiling right now, you’re doing something right.
  2. It’s not so much what you say that counts, it’ how you make people feel.
  3. The biggest mistake you can make is doing nothing because you’re scared to make a mistake.
  4. No matter how it turns out, it always ends up just the way it should be.  Either you succeed or you learn something.  Win-Win.
  5. Freedom is the greatest gift.  Self-sufficiency is the greatest freedom.
  6. If you catch yourself working hard and loving every minute of it, don’t stop.  You’re on to something big.  Because hard work ain’t hard when you concentrate on your passions.
  7. It’s not about getting a chance, it’s about taking a chance.  You’ll rarely be 100% sure it will work.  But you can always be 100% sure doing nothing won’t work.  Sometimes you just have to go for it!
  8. Complaining is like slapping yourself for slapping yourself.  It doesn’t solve the problem, it just hurts you more.
  9. The one with nothing to hide is always the one left standing tall.
  10. You can press forward long after you can’t.  It’s just a matter of wanting it bad enough.
  11. There’s a big difference between knowing and doing.  Knowledge is basically useless without action.
  12. In work and business, when they need you more than you need them, you have succeeded.
  13. Everything that happens in life is neither good nor bad.  It just depends on your perspective.
  14. We are all weird.  And life is weird.  And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we call it love.
  15. True friendship and true love do sustain the tests of distance and time.
  16. You can’t change who you are.  You can only change what you know and how you apply this knowledge.
  17. It is okay to be angry.  It is never okay to be cruel.
  18. Even when you feel like you have nothing, someone else likely has far less.  Find them and help them.  You’ll see why.
  19. Having a thousand credentials on the wall will not make you a decent human being.  But genuinely helping one person everyday will.
  20. Remember, change happens for a reason.  Roll with it.  It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.

And I leave you with this question:

How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?

Photo by: Nattu


  1. says

    Marc, this was really a great read. I have just turned 19, and I am honestly really nervous about entering my 20’s! I feel like there is so much pressure on me to succeed and secure my place in the world in the next decade. Your blog helped a little, because I know that I am aware of some of those lessons already. I’m not sure I have experienced them all first-hand yet, but I have definitely heard of them all and cannot wait to learn them through my own eyes!

    I’m also considering doing one of these lists for my Teen years.

    Thanks Marc :)

  2. chris says

    Great list, I just saved to my journal! Thanks!

    #6 and #12 are directly related, once you master your niche you feel the value of contribution to your firm. Once you are looked to to guide others, you have surpassed the stage of self progression, and into directing the team into unified positive progression.

  3. Anneliese says

    Gosh, that last question really made me think. I’m only 15, but I always take myself way too seriously. Sometimes I mistake myself for being much, MUCH older :(

    Recently found your blog, btw, and the posts I’ve read so far are very inspirational :)

  4. says

    Well, well, well. . . To me, so far The Best post on MarcandAngel. . . And i feel that every one of 20 steps counts and is some where related to my daily routine life, ambitions and life plans. Great stuff indeed!


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