I'm a twenty-something. What should my top priority be? originally appeared on Quora - the knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights.

I am going to advise one thing that I wish someone had told me earlier: Passion is not your priority. You are not "looking" for this hidden treasure trove of happiness, and you aren't waiting for your life to suddenly "click" and become as fulfilling as people say it should be.

I am 22 years old and my priority is self development. I enjoy educating myself in categories where I can use improvement. I spend time improving my emotional and social connections, physical health, mental health and knowledge, financial stability, budgeting, investing, career improvement, and conditioning to overcome fears and limitations, etc. I think the one thing you should prioritize is your mentality for growth. Once you have that desire to improve yourself you can find many opportunities and take control of your own happiness. I believe that when you are so consumed trying to "figure out" what you should do, and where you should be, or how to avoid regret that you are letting opportunities and moments slip right from under you.

For the longest time I have been told I need to find my purpose and find a career that I am passionate about in order to find true happiness. And just like most people, I have been overwhelmed because I have NO clue what that is. This video helped me realize that the subconscious expectations that we--and society--put on ourselves do not have to be made with such a cookie cutter mentality.

From someone who has grown up on her own with no financial knowledge or parental support ...

  • Find the importance in finances and budgeting. Build your credit wisely, refinance your car, limit your unnecessary spending, and save up for long term goals.
  • Find the importance in your diet, physical health, and medical needs. Small investments in your health now can prevent huge limitations and expenses in the future. Personally, I have let my back pain get so bad where I could not enjoy much without crippling pain and the longer you wait, the worse it gets.
  • Find the importance in improving all aspects of yourself. If you make yourself a priority, it's equal to loving yourself. Subconsciously we put others first, and ourselves last. If you find importance in improving yourself you will avoid procrastinating, settling for less, and limiting your opportunities.
  • Find the importance in quality friends, and get rid of the toxic people around you. Keeping negative people around you effects your mental health and mind set, it often limits you from focusing on your own happiness.

If you plan accordingly and sow the seeds from the start, you have a bigger reach to fulfill your desires and dreams with the right financial structure and support. You have the wisdom and abilities to utilize every opportunity that comes your way.

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