Should we have our lives figured out at 20?


Something that I put a lot of pressure on myself about is how I don’t really have a life plan anymore. When I was growing up I thought I had it all figured out and a plan for exactly what I wanted to be/do with my life. I wanted to move to London, do a Fashion Design degree and become a Fashion Designer.

A broad goal for someone so young and I didn’t really lay down the exact steps to get there. This didn’t matter anyway because when it came to applying for University I realised how Fashion Design wasn’t for me.

Ever since that point of realisation I’ve kind of been flitting between ideas. And even though the degree I chose is very direct within a certain career path, is that really what I want to spend the rest of my life doing? If I ever am lucky enough to succeed in the industry anyway, would I live happily ever after?

Probably not.

I’ve reached a point where I don’t think University or a degree should be the be all and end all of the life path we walk. That being because “people are people and sometimes we change our minds” (one of my favourite quotes.) I’m not saying that University is pointless if we don’t use the degree in our future jobs because that would make me a hypocrite. I’m not exactly the type of person who would flit away £9,000 a year and stand on the street burning £20 notes. That’s wasteful.

There is just so much pressure on young people to decide in college or at school how the rest of their life will play out and although having an idea is helpful, it shouldn’t be stressful. We shouldn’t be stressed yet.

As someone who feels the pressure like an invisible 10 tonne weight on my head, I know how it feels to be stressed about the future. Maybe it’s the perfectionist within me but it can be really difficult not having a vision or a plan.

I have this burning need to be successful, to be independent, and to make something for myself. After spending hours of my time reading interviews with successful women, reading through the ‘Career Girl Daily’ app (on the daily) and also reading ‘Girl Boss’ it’s hard not to feel the inspiration to create success for yourself.

But that brings me back to the title of this blog post. Is it really necessary to have our lives figured out by the age of 20? I’m 20 now walking around with my eye closed trying not to fall over. Luckily I’m keeping my mind open and throwing myself into anything that interests me. Being able to put so much of yourself, time, and effort into something that interest you/something you love is a great way to spend your time. It gives you a purpose when you’re lost.

So for anyone else who is kind of confused about the future like me here is the advice I’m giving myself:

  • Learn from everything you see, hear, read and do in general.
  • Read and read a lot.
  • Pin point exactly what it is you enjoy and find a way to incorporate that into your life.
  • Remember that your degree doesn’t define your career path.
  • Be creative.
  • Take inspiration from everyone.



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  1. 8th April 2016 / 8:35 pm

    As a 16 year old with no clue what to do with my life, it is reassuring that at 20 you don’t either! I agree with you and you give really good tips! I just posted about growing up too, and I also have a post about career plans and how they are overrated. My blog is if you would like to take a look 🙂 Great post by the way!

    • 8th April 2016 / 8:44 pm

      Thank you! You shouldn’t be expected to know what you want to do at 16 you’re still so young! And I will have a look through your posts 🙂

  2. 16th April 2016 / 7:51 pm

    I certainly hope we don’t need to have our lives figured out by the time we’re 20, because if we do, I’m two years behind! 😉 When I turned twenty, the trajectory of my life was so drastically different from today’s. And while it’s a shame that we spend so much money on our undergraduate degrees, I think it’s pretty well accepted now that what we study in university and where we think we’re headed don’t have nearly as much impact on our eventual paths as we think they will. Thanks for sharing!

    Hillary |

    • 17th April 2016 / 5:52 am

      What a great way of putting it! It makes me feel better knowing others feel the same way. Part of me kind of likes being slightly unsure of where my life is heading because it all adds to the adventure! Thank you for your comment,
      Melissa, XO

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