I turn 27 this month, and I know i’ve still got a lot of my life ahead of me and someone older will think i’m crazy, but it’s impossible not to think you should have more sorted with your life. In the modern day and age, using social media (particularly Instagram) allows you to constantly compare your life to others of a similar age. Scrolling through the timeline you can see people getting married, setting up their first home, owning their own business or travelling the world, and although social media can be fake, it has got me thinking about questions people should be asking themselves in their late 20’s.
Should I already have money saved for the future?
I have a steady job and income, but without owning a home it’s often difficult to save money for the future, with bills and various outgoings getting in the way. Looking at my parents as an example, they had their own home in their early 20’s, but financial times were different back then. They recently looked at this handy calculator to see how much their house had increased in value since buying it, but in current times should you have a mortgage in your late 20’s? Or should you be in the process of saving for a deposit?
Personally, I do feel you should have at least something saved by your mid 20’s, but not necessarily on the property ladder (unless you’re really lucky). I feel there isn’t enough preparation during University or even late high school in terms of people advising you on saving, the best techniques and information on what mortgages actually are. Of course, there’s also nothing wrong with travelling at this age. I feel renting is a bit of a pain, but if your route in life is to go out and travel the world, there’s plenty of time to catch up afterwards.
Am I in the right career?
Again, looking back at my parents, and a lot of other people I know, not everyone has been on one set career path. My parents changed their careers in their early 20s, and the availability to learn something new nowadays through online tutorials or open university courses, allows us to switch about as things change in life.
I currently work in Marketing, but i’m not fully sure if it’s the direction I want to go in. I’ve noticed an increase in people going freelance with their skills, and some of my friends are fully accomplished working in industries they taught themselves, completely different to their uni course. There is a lot of pressure in late high school to make sure you are taking the correct course at University, but in all honesty I don’t think it matters too much. I studied film and camera work in Uni, and it was only when I had a module on marketing movies digitally that allowed me to understand the world of digital marketing, which is where I work now. So, especially in your late 20’s, there is plenty of time and lots of opportunities to change career.
Am I doing better or worse than people my age?
Honestly, I think this is a big one, and something a lot of people in their late 20’s think about, but may not admit. As I mentioned previously, social media is the biggest influence on this question, and comparing your life to others can be very toxic for your mental health. Even though it’s hard, it’s important to take a step back from comparing, and look at your own life in details, the things you’re doing well at, personal relationships, how lucky you are to have the family you have, and really concentrate on your own accomplishments as opposed to what others are doing.
There is no rules in life as to where you should be at a certain age, and you need to remember that people only put up the highlights of their life, not the lowlights. For example, someone might already have their own home with their partner, but think about how much debt they might be in to get to that position, or the arguments it has caused in the process, or how they are tied down to one area as opposed to how easy it could be for you as a renting adult to move abroad or the other side of the country. If a home is what you want though, and you don’t have it yet, don’t worry, you will one day, don’t take for granted the things you have now.
Do you agree? What questions are you constantly asking yourself?