I’ve hit an age where I can officially say I’m in my late twenties and not where younger me had envisioned myself at this point in my life – is that really such a bad thing though?
My goals have moved on from being ‘big’ long-term ideologies like ‘owning a house’, ‘travelling the world’ or having the ‘job of my dreams’. I now focus on short-term plans. That way, I can feel success for achieving moments more regularly instead of setting myself up for failure (which has happened plenty of times in the past).
Witworld has been a major part of getting me through a particularly rough patch – the website was originally going to launch as a travel blog. However (after creating the whole site) the idea fizzled out by the end of summer last year. We started 2019 by revisiting and revamping the site into what you see today. I also set myself a new year’s resolution of doing more with photography and, once I can afford it, I intend to purchase a new camera and equipment (I don’t even own a backdrop – I painted some scrap cardboard white and rest various blankets on it to create the illusion of a studio set).
Going back to the idea of goals, I had in my head that I would be a homeowner by now and, when I look around, so many others my age have already accomplished this. Initially, I felt like a failure and couldn’t help but compare myself to them, but now I consider it differently: I realised that hardly anyone I know in my generation achieved this without help. I’m not saying that it’s a bad way to do it – if you can save money, then do! For me though, I noticed that I’m comparing myself to people who have it very differently to me and it’s not a fair comparison, so I stopped putting myself down over it and moved my own goalpost to a more realistic timescale.
I wanted to travel, I loved the idea and was gutted that I could only afford one university trip in my entire time there. I moved out at 18 and, while my social media feed was full of exotic images from around the globe, I worked every summer to pay bills. This made me feel unaccomplished for obvious reasons and took me a long time to adjust to the idea that I was succeeding, albeit, not how I intended to – but I was adulting more than a fair number of others had to at the time.
When little Lani set her goals for current Lani, she was so small in terms of life experiences and learning about the world and all it had to offer. Looking back, it was never that her goals were unrealistic in comparison to adults at the time (considering what they achieved at certain milestones), but they become unreachable as she grew and learned more.
Does that mean I failed? I suppose that’s one way to look at it, but I think my goals and targets evolved the more I developed and yours should to: Never be too hard on yourself and try to avoid evaluating your achievements against others – they are not you and you are not them so it will never be a fair comparison.
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