Seven Things Being 25 Taught Me

by Lucas Witherspoon

Each year, as my birthday naggingly looms, I take the time to reflect on what the past 12 months has taught me in an effort to (hopefully, but usually fruitlessly) better myself during the next year. 25 was sort of a rough year, but subsequently one which brought about enormous personal growth. With 26 right around the corner, here’s what I’ve realized during my 25th year of life:

Being single is ideal
I can’t go a day without hearing a friend complaining about being single, but in my experience, being single is sort of awesome. In most cases, people desire relationships in order to fill some emotional void they have, but I personally hate ever being treated as someone’s possession, which is what the concept of a relationship subconsciously espouses. I like being able to do who and what I want whenever I want without repercussions.

Most “drama” is conflict you choose to acknowledge
Another thing it doesn’t seem I can go a day without hearing about is supposed “drama.” As you get older, one would think extraneous things like trivial gossip would become irrelevant, but there are grown ass adults who actually thrive off of it. Do you want to know what the easiest way to avoid “drama” is? Don’t involve yourself in or acknowledge it. If you really need to have a spotlight thrust upon you to feel important, at least do something of value to garner it, like maybe charity or, I don’t know, anything but being a societal waste of a person.

Using high school terminology is not a cute look
While we’re on the subject of “drama,” that word is stupid, as are terms like YOLO, swag, yute, etc. The youth of today is doing a fine job of decimating the English language on their own; as adults, let’s not contribute to linguistic genocide.

Clubs are overrated
Given I’ve been going clubbing since I was 16, you can imagine how burnt out I am after nearly a decade of the club scene. Frankly, clubs sort of bore me. I usually have to be wasted and high on coke in order to even entertain the thought of going to one. Bars I find to be much more tolerable, but even then, the clientele they attract is usually what I find obnoxious. Gay bars are fine, but the heteronormative, testosterone-laden atmosphere in straight bars is a bit disenchanting and, frankly, vexatious.

Alone time is golden
When I was younger, I always had to be out doing something and being sociable. I didn’t like being with my thoughts. As I’ve matured, however, I’ve come to value moments of solitude for the gems they are. My life is wreaked with havoc, so when I get a few moments to myself, I value them, whereas previously I’d have loathed the privacy.

If you want something to happen, initiative is key
I spent a few years dawdling about and wondering why nothing was happening in my life to get me to the place I wanted to get, because I was honestly used to everything just falling into my lap and working in my favor. Then, I came to the mind-blowing (read: commonsensical) conclusion that to make things happen, you actually have to work for it. A novel idea that a lot of people figure out much earlier, but my years of being coddled and getting by on my looks and dick had numbed me to that reality. In the words of Andy Warhol, “They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.”

It’s necessary to venture outside of your comfort zone
Most people go through life secure in their contentedness, but I am not a person who can settle for mundaneness. I’m always in search of new experiences or bits of knowledge or friends. The way I see it, life is an odyssey made beautiful and worthy by punctuated bits of euphoria and enlightenment. If you never escape being sheltered and willfully nescient, you’ll never grow as a person.