Seven risks that help you grow in your 20s and 30s

Want to live a full life with few regrets? Here are seven risks that help you grow in your 20s and 30s.

You’re out of college, working a regular 9-to-5 grind, and starting to feel like you’re developing a well-worn rut to live in. Life isn’t changing, and more importantly, you aren’t growing.

But right now, while you’re young, in your 20s and 30s, it’s the perfect time to take some risks in life. 

All risks come with the chance you won’t succeed, but now is the time when it’s okay to make mistakes. Not only do mistakes help you learn, but also they also help you grow.

When you take risks and make mistakes, you learn that accepting failure, devising different routes, and starting over won’t kill you. Taking risks is also the only way to gain a big reward in the end.

Either way, it’s ultimately the experience along the way that really matters. 

Seven risks that help you grow in your 20s and 30s

So, before financial responsibility sets in, there are some very necessary risks for young professionals to take in their 20s and 30s.

Here are seven of them. Take a look at the list and see which ones you’re ready for, then get out there and start taking them!

1) Move for opportunity

Sometimes a fresh start is exactly what you need to help you find yourself as a person and grow. A change in scenery can force a person to undertake new experiences, get out and meet people, and start fresh. 

Why not select an affordable city with plenty to offer, such as Charlotte, for instance? Not only is the North Carolina city attracting young professionals these days, but also it gives them plenty to do, offering both beaches and mountains within a short drive. Plus, the cost of living in Charlotte is well below the national average, which gives you more money to spend making memories with family and friends.

2) Make a splurge purchase

Do you need it? No. Does it make you happy? You bet it does! When you’re young, if you can, consider making at least one splurge purchase that isn’t completely rational.

Not only will your purchase make you feel proud that you’re able to afford it, but it also will bring you pleasure. It’s important to know that you can do that for yourself.

So go ahead and buy that car or that fancy new piece of technology. Even if it financially sets you back, you still have the ability to recuperate from a large purchase while you’re young, without greater financial responsibilities truly weighing you down. Just make sure you limit yourself to one splurge purchase and don’t get carried away. Go on, you’ve earned it!

3) See the world

Traveling the world is more than posting pictures of your journeys on social media. Of course, take all the pictures you can of memories, but store them in the cloud, and get on with living your journey. Your pictures will be safe and easily accessible upon your return.

When you take the opportunity to travel, you get the chance to learn about other people and cultures. You take in an enormous amount of information from unfamiliar experiences that will shape your outlook on life. 

Travel as far and often as possible. Take the road less traveled, make mistakes, think on your feet, and get back on your path. Drink in all the sights, smells, sounds, and tastes.

Traveling is easier when you are young and don’t have too many familial and financial responsibilities weighing you down. You could even take an extended journey. Why not put your belongings in storage and live the nomadic life for a while?

4) Sharpen your skills

Every person is born with a unique skill set, and when you’re young, it’s a perfect time to discover, sharpen and hone those skills. Whether you’re a gifted computer programmer or an amateur artist, developing skills now will make you a better-rounded person in the future. 

In your youth, you have the perfect opportunity to dedicate some real time to growing your skill set — plus the mental elasticity and responsive synapses to advance quickly and retain the information. Try taking additional classes to really let your skills blossom. And remember that practice makes perfect!

5) Test your limits

You’ve heard the phrase, “You never know until you try.” That couldn’t be truer when it comes to life. In any area, from physical endurance to mental challenges to emotional resilience, make sure to test your limits regularly.

You’ll start to find that the more you push your limits, the higher your ceiling grows. And expanding your capacity in any direction can only be good for you.

Pushing yourself to the very limit can be uncomfortable at first, but the more you do it, the more comfortable with discomfort you’ll become.

Knowing that you can survive momentary discomfort and come out stronger for it, the kinds of experiences will teach you lessons that can benefit you in every aspect of life. Not only will testing your limits help you grow as a person, but it also can help propel your career.

6) Follow your passions

Everyone has a passion in life; some people just take a little longer to discover what it is. If you’re lucky enough to find your passion young and pursue it wholeheartedly, you will be a happier person for it.

Whether your passion is playing the piano, kayaking, reading the classics, or building houses for the homeless, following your passion allows you to let off steam through a creative outlet.

Your passions can be artistic, physical, intellectual – or if you are one of the lucky few, work-related. Following your passion gives you a more developed appreciation for life.

7) Conquer your fear

Either face your fears head-on or live with them forever. Your 20s and 30s are the perfect time to tackle your fears and hopefully, put them behind you for good.

Remember that even though fears are not always rational, and can be different for everyone, they all carry weight and affect the way we live. The ability to recognize, face, and move through your fears is one of the most important tools a human can wield. 

Maybe public speaking is your biggest hurdle, or you’re afraid of heights. Learning to tackle your fear and come out on the other side will help you grow and develop. You’ll likely be surprised with what you’ll learn about your character, drive, and perseverance when you successfully conquer a fear.  

When you’re young, it’s like having metaphorical money in the bank: Young people generally enjoy better health as well as more free time, curiosity, and open-mindedness than they will have later on, once they’ve taken on career, mortgage, and family responsibilities that limit their choices.

Spend some of that capital now and expand yourself as a person! You’ll find yourself better positioned – and living with fewer regrets – in the future.

Photo by AJ Yorio