Turning 21 is a really magical moment in a woman's life. You go from being a woman who cannot drink in public places, to the woman who can drink in public places. It's pretty much like being a VIP at a club. You flash your ID and suddenly a whole new section of a menu starts vying for your attention. In my experience, alcohol has made many nights great, and many mornings not-so-great. Basically, turning 21 rules.
At the same time there are a few things that we, as women, need to get done before we turn that magical number. I'm talking about this list, baby! These are a few things that I have found to be really useful in my post-21 life. Think of it as stacking the deck in your favor. You are basically checking off things now so that your late 20's are awesome by default. Sure...it takes away time from binge-watching shows and eating pizza bagels, but it's an investment that you will never regret. Plus, you'll have awesome memories!
I suggest getting a move on these quickly. When you are in your first years of college you will have a lot of free time. Make use of that time wisely. Don't sit around waiting for things to happen to you — start doing things. Most importantly though, don't beat yourself up if you don't get all of these done by a set date. You will grow and evolve every single day. Just because you never learned for to change a tire, doesn't mean you failed. It just means you will have a harder time with a flat.
Here is a list of 27 things every woman should do before she turns 21:
1. Learn To Change A Tire
It takes a little while to remember all the steps, but you will feel like such a boss after you successfully complete this task, and it sure as hell beats calling roadside assistance to come get you.
2. Ask Someone Out
Start getting the courage to ask someone out. This way you will never feel out of control in the dating world. You call the shots!
3. Go To The Movies Alone
Treat yourself. People place so much pressure on themselves to be around other people. Sometimes it's just nice to be alone in a dark room watching a movie. And the plus side is that you are going to see what YOU want to see and you can get as many snacks as you want.
4. Read Infinite Jest
It's a great book. It's also going to talk about things that will start to hit you in your late twenties. So be ready.
5. Pull An All Nighter Just For Fun
You won't want to do this later in life. So get it out of the way now.
6. Try Eating Something Crazy
Grasshopper tacos! Mac and cheese pancakes! Get out of the same routines you have going on right now and let your tastebuds LIVE.
7. Open A Savings Account
This one is so important. When you graduate and have to find your own place, the ability to pay for that new place is empowering. Because you opened a savings account early and were wise about spending your money, you know can (hopefully) afford not living in a five story walk-up, and you've started a habit of saving that will stick with you for life. That's an epic win.
8. Balance A Check Book
Learn early so that you are not lost five years down the line (accidentally racking up debt at 25 is not so fun).
9. Go To A Music Festival
Just enjoy the music. You don't need alcohol to feel it.
Because you'll be more scared the older you get. So it's best to jump out of a plane early. Plus, this is a great "never-have-I-ever" option.
11. Go Camping In The Desert
Grab a friend and stare at the stars all night.
12. Have A Heart-To-Heart With Your Parents About What They Were Like At Your Age
When you are older you'll start to seek out the relationship with your parents that you've neglected. So why not skip that middle part and get right to it? Ask them about their childhoods and what they were doing at your age. They are wise and have been through it all.
13. Change Your Hair Style
Do it now so that you have time to grow it out if you hate it.
14. Skip School With Friends
Enjoy being a badass. Don't do this on the day of your finals, but generally having one "bad" day is pretty freeing.
15. Get A Professional Bra Fitting
Oh. My. God. This is sooooo important. Having the right bra will give you confidence, shape and style. Plus, it feels so much better when you have a professional measure you!
Be politically active and stay politically active. Don't let headlines make decisions for you. That way you wont be 30 and pissed that the world is sh*tty. You could have contributed to it being better!
17. Learn To Cook A Signature Dish
It can become your go-to at dinner parties and impress everyone.
18. Be In A Relationship You Know Isn't Forever From The Start
This way you learn what it's like. You'll understand what you want, what you like, what you strive for. Dating is hard, so having low stakes relationships are pretty awesome.
19. Survive Heartbreak
Also, if that relationship goes south, you can learn for to mend your heart. You won't be shattered beyond repair if you learn to survive early on.
20. Compete In A Contest
Having a picture of you on a restaurant wall is cool as hell. I did this with a friend in Boston and our picture is still there!
21. Surprise A Friend With A Friendlationship Date
Doing something nice for a friend will teach you how to be more thoughtful and generous later on in life. It doesn't have to be a grand gesture, but it has to be spontaneous.
22. Fail A Test
Learn to fail. It's OK if you don't achieve something. The world won't end. This will help with the pressures of adult life later on.
23. Get 100 On A Test
At the same time, try to be perfect just once. That way you'll know that you can push yourself to be the best version of yourself.
You might not have time later on, so try and make it a habit of volunteering. Be selfless.
25. Get Off By Yourself
Find out what you like so that you can voice it later to your partners, and rest assured that you can get what you want from yourself at the same time.
26. Visit a Foreign Country
This is a great one. You need to experience the world. This can obviously be done when you are older, but doing it when you are younger and have to get creative with the financials is so beneficial. We tend to be very selfish when we are young so seeing other places can put things into perspective.
27. Make A Video To Your Older Self
This is just for fun. I made a video when I turned 18 to my 30-year-old self. I made a few predictions that I hope will come true by the time I hit 30. Plus — it'll be awesome seeing how young and naive you were ~back in the day~.
Image: Pexels; Giphy