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Attaining a Meaningful Life: Open Letter to Young People in Their 20’s

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I watched the documentary, Kipchoge: The Last Milestone, and at some point in the documentary, he said something along the lines of, “When I am running, I make sure I concentrate. It might be tempting to listen to the cheers of bystanders and fans, but as much as the cheers motivate me, they add pressure on me.” Somehow I related to that statement. I am sure many young people can relate, too, as they work towards attaining a meaningful life.

While adulting, you are thrown into the world to try and make something of yourself. You are a novice at life with potential. The thing with potential is that it has to be tamed for it to be productive. Everybody, from parents to friends, colleagues, bosses, and even strangers, at times, come to you and cheer you on. I know you can do this. You are talented. As much as these affirmations are priceless, they add just a bit more pressure.

If you are in your 20’s, this one is for you. Here is how to set up a fulfilling, meaningful life without listening to the cheers on the sides.


Allow for the possibility that you have something to contribute to the world. Believe that the world would be a worse place without that contribution. You must believe that your life has a purpose. Whether this is true or not, you have to believe it. If you do not, then everything else is vague. What’s the point? Believing that you are significant will direct you towards being productive.

Make a plan

Having believed that you have something to offer to the world, it is time to look at what you are interested in. Make a plan on how to accomplish or get accomplished in that which you are interested in. Making a plan calls potential to order. With a plan, you have a direction to follow towards a meaningful life. When you put down a plan, you establish your true north. It is better to move gradually towards a designated destination than run around without aim. Aim allows you to become intentional, meticulous, and patient. Otherwise, you will be just jumping up and down. Eventually, you will be beaten, exhausted, and stuck.

Be disciplined

Once you have a plan in order, it is time to execute. Execution is the most challenging part. As the famous saying goes, Rome was not built in a day. It takes time. Within this time you have to be consistent. Without discipline, you cannot be consistent. Discipline is the glue that brings it all together.

Don’t be afraid of responsibility

Life might seem easy without any commitments. But lack of commitment is the quickest way to misery. Having said that, pay attention to what you are committing to. When you commit to something, you take on responsibility. Responsibility shapes your character. You react to the world in accordance with your character. It is vital that you become responsible for something, for that shapes you in a big way.

Also read: Become the Best Version of Yourself: 5 Tips to Building Character

Settle down

Some decide not to go the family way. Which is okay. But there are few with whom such decision (settling down) ages well. Starting a family presents an opportunity to settle down and become responsible. It is with your kids that you might be able to experience unconditional love. That by itself comes with loads of meaning and significance in life. Despite its ups and downs, family love will offer companionship and love that can be sustained over a long time. From family, you can create something meaningful and significant. Moreover, when all is said and done, you have to go back home. It is upon you to commit and shoulder the responsibility of creating a home for yourself.

In short, a meaningful life is one where you are fully engaged. You are particular with your decisions. You take charge to shape your life as you wish and you are not in competition with anyone. You are here to do your thing, the best way possible, and be out. Make sure you work it and it works for you. That’s the only guarantee that it will work out in the end.

You will also love: Leveraging Personality as a Starting Point to Personal Development

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