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20 Habits That Will Ruin Your 20s
A comprehensive guide to ruining “the best years of your life”.
I don’t know if I really think that your 20s are “the best years of your life”, but a lot of people seem to say that they are.
The truth is, your 20s are a giant clusterfuck if you don’t work to get your shit together. In your 20s, you will likely be physically healthier than any other decade of your life. You will have fewer responsibilities than any other decade in your life. It will be easier to make changes in your 20s than in any other decade in your life.
These are 20 habits that will ruin your ability to make your “roaring 20s” into your “stable 30s”.
Cheating (in anything).
Just don’t do it, especially if you want to look at yourself in the mirror later that day.
The best way to increase your aging process is to become an unethical human being.
Hooking up with people you barely know.
I did this in college more than I wanted to. I thought it was what “cool people” did.
I never felt good about it. It was never fun.
Don’t let me hold you back, but hooking up with strangers was not for me.
Drinking (a lot of) alcohol.
Nothing makes me feel worse than knocking back a few beers when I could just have a Topo Chico or a La Croix. Sorry if I’m weird for saying that. (I love caffeine-free Diet Coke, by the way, the official soda of athletes with anxiety!)
Moderation, I guess, but alcohol has never actually helped me make my life better — besides maybe teaching me what not to do. If you struggle with anxiety, depression, or dissociation, alcohol will be like a band-aid for a deep flesh wound.
Pretending you’re tough.
Being a “tough guy” helped me with zero things in my life ever. The tougher you attempt to appear, the weaker you seem. Toughness is being vulnerable and dealing with the consequences of your vulnerability.
Most of the time, people act tough because they’re weak and insecure.
Staying in relationships that are draining in the name of “love”.
Love isn’t supposed to suck. If this sounds oddly specific, that’s because it is for me.
Relationships are not supposed to be “work”. Falling in love is not a job.
The last thing you should be feeling if you are in your 20s is rushed to find love. Despite what everyone says, there’s lots of love in the world.
Doing more for the sake of doing more.
Honestly, no one cares how productive you are. Being productive is not a personality trait.
Spending money you don’t have.
Come on now… you don’t need that new Razor scooter. Relax.
Spending a lot of time on social media.
You’re gonna die one day, and you’d rather watch Tik Toks than go do stuff? That’s wild to me.
Fighting with friends and family members and partners.
I struggle to engage in conflict with my inner circle anymore. It’s too draining. Don’t fight. Have conversations.
Trying to impress people.
No one cares about your stupid watch. No one cares how much money you made from writing. Kill the fucking ego.
Watching too much TV.
I like TV. It’s a nice escape from time to time. I’m a big fan of that one show, “Euphoria”, because it reminds me of my fucking wacky high school. However, too much TV will make you depressed.
I’m not one of those “NoFap” people. That’s weird and a little excessive to me.
However, I’ve never watched porn and then felt better about my life afterward.
Reading too many books.
Yes. You can read “too many books”.
You can’t find happiness in a book.
Self-help people love to talk about how great books are. I love books too. I’m actually trying to write one, and I read a lot. However, reading too many books is wasting your precious time. Go live.
Books are in your mind. Your life is real.
Eating too much.
Because of my career in combat sports, I’ve had issues with binge eating for years. I never feel good about stuffing myself, and (as most of us know) overeating is not good for your health.
Overeating is bad, but so is undereating.
Exhausting, I know.
Food is part of what helps us feel connected to each other as human beings. I’ve also had periods in my life where I’ve skipped meals for days on end to make weight for Jiu-Jitsu and wrestling. Few things are more isolating than self-enforced starvation.
Having too many goals.
“If a man does not have sauce, then he is lost. But the same man can get lost in the sauce.” — Gucci Mane
I couldn’t have said it better myself.
Allowing your fear to dictate your behavior.
Nothing stings quite as deeply as regret. Letting fear stop you from taking chances is a surefire path to spiritual suicide.
Cool when you’re younger doesn’t mean the same thing it does when you’re an adult. It’s best to avoid the pursuit of coolness altogether and seek something deeper.
“Ignore people playing status games. They gain status by attacking people playing wealth creation games.” — Naval
No, this is not a constipation joke.
If your relationship is a constant battle, it’s probably not worth it. If your career is killing you physically and mentally, it’s probably not worth it. The more you force shit in your life that isn’t working, the more miserable you’ll be.
Becoming obsessed with self-improvement.
The truth about self-improvement is a bit grim: self-improvement is about you. Life is not about you. Learn to balance your personal development with the love and connection of people around you.
I actually did a weird thing this week and wrote zero articles on Medium. I needed to take the week off. Back to our regularly scheduled programming next week. :)
As always, if you’d like to support my work or read more, you can always purchase a Medium membership using my referral code, subscribe to my premium newsletter, or pick up a copy of my latest ebook on performance anxiety and stage fright.