Your 20s are full of mistakes — from awful corporate career moves, to getting married out of college. Just so many errors.
When you’re facing a daunting decade of the inevitable pitfalls, it’s crucial to get some Cliff’s Notes on the potential hazards you might expect.
Just like you wouldn’t drive across town without Waze telling you where the nearest foreign object is on the road — it’s necessary to pre-learn the roadblocks when navigating your 20s.
NOTE: These 5 hazards (if not dealt with in your 20s) will carry over into your 30s and 40s. I shake my head when I witness older folks repeating these mistakes, because I know they’ve never been taught (and probably don’t read my blog). What a shame.
5 COMMON LIFE HAZARDS & THE GO-TO DETOUR
- Asking a customer, not the store employee about where something is in the store
Here’s the thing, many people look like they should work at Target. Some folks dress like they’re in uniform because they’re from the mid West. The best thing to do when hoping to find an employee to guide you to the mattress pads is to go to the front of the store and ask a legit cashier. Otherwise, you’re likely to become impatient, rash, and lash out at the first human you see. Which is weird, and damaging to the innocent bystander who has never worked retail in his/her life. Slow down.
- Assuming someone is a different race, and they’re not
This one is tricky, because America is such a melting pot. I’m not sure this hazard is as hazardous in other countries, because Italians look like French people, too. And I’ll get beat up defending that. Issue is, everyone is so damn sensitive to being mistaken for something else. Mexican is NOT Puerto Rican. Persian is NOT Armenian. Black is NO LONGER African American. The best option is to ask where their parents were born, if they don’t get the hint and they say “Cleveland,” just create a fake survey for them to fill out and include an ethnicity part with the full breakdown of what you believe they might actually be (don’t forget other (explain:____).
- Honking loudly at a stop sign only to realize it’s a crosswalk with pedestrians
I suffer from impatience, so I know what it’s like to honk and berate a driver for stopping at a stop sign for more than half a mississippi. Or for slowing down in the middle of traffic, not closing up the gap between his bumper and the next car — only to realize both dummies were letting an old lady and her young grandchild cross the street with their arms full of Trader Joes. Pedestrians always have the right of way, and if they don’t, they will feel entitled to believing they do, and that it’s kosher to mean mug you for what feels like way too long a time as they cross. This stress is useless. The better move is to give it a second. Because it could also be a COP or an AMBULANCE, in which case turn down your damn music, homie!
- Mistaking a Friendly Conversation For a Pick-Up Line
Not everyone wants to sleep with you. I know, crazy! And to assume that anyone speaking to you for longer than two minutes is solely interested in getting into your pants is ludicrous. So next time someone genuinely wants to learn your background and job description, don’t brush them off as another human pining for your sex, some folks like to connect on a human level. (Unless you want them to get in your pants. In that case, talk away!)
- Letting a Guy Pay if You Like Him & Don’t Intend to Sleep With Him
Ladies, don’t let a guy you’re interested in pursuing further pay for everything on the first date if you don’t intend to be put in very uncomfortable and compromising positions (I mean, like when he expects sex and you’re like, what? I wanted to take this slow). Men need to be taught some boundaries, and when you allow for them to grab the full reigns early on by paying for the meal, the drinks, and the cab to your place, you’re asking for a mess. Because then all that’s left is declaring that you’re on this no-sex-cleanse or that you’re a born-again who is restricting from relations until a deep spiritual bond has been forged. I know this whole paying thing is controversial, so if you could pay for the tip, or grab one round, or NOT LET HIM TAKE YOU IN A CAB TO YOUR PLACE, you won’t be guilt-tripped into putting out.
Now go for it. But don’t take the highway, tons of traffic.