Whether you’re at that age where you’re just starting to think about marriage or are as single as the Beyonce song (hands up in the air), there are certain things we think every woman should do before walking down the aisle. Here are 10 of them—what’s yours?
1. Find a job you love and kick ass at it
Once you’re married and have kids, switching your career becomes a lot harder. Figure out what your passion is now, while you’re young and only have yourself to worry about, and just go for it. Don’t hold back. When you do find a job you love, be the very best you can possibly be at it. Nothing feels as rewarding as chasing your dreams and catching them.
2. Have a summer fling with a hot foreigner
Go abroad for a summer. Travel to Europe. Meet a hot guy in Paris and totally get swept off your feet. You only live once. And let’s be real, every girl loves a man with an accent whispering sweet nothings into her ear. Who cares if you can’t understand, mon cheri.
3. Get your heart broken at least once
Heartache sucks, but you know what they say, you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince. Failed relationships teach us a thing or two about love and what we do and don’t want in a man. It prepares us for the day Mr. Right comes along and completely changes our life. Without heartache, we can’t truly understand love.
4. Stay out all night, just because
You’re young and wild and free, so go out and make the most of it! Party until the sun comes up. Dance until dawn. Embark on a crazy adventure. Drink on the beach. Be completely irresponsible. Before you know it, the opportunity will have passed you by.
5. Set a goal and actually reach it
What’s the one thing you’ve always wanted to accomplish, but maybe never got around to? Jot it down, map out a serious timeline and then get your butt off the couch and work like crazy to make it happen. Setting goals is great and all, but if you never take the initiative to actually achieve them, what’s the point? You’re only wasting your time.
6. Learn how to ask for what you want (and get it!)
Whether it’s a raise at work or an edgy new hair color you’ve been dying to try out, speak up for yourself. Stand your ground and be firm about it. The person you’re asking may not like your request, but they’ll sure as hell respect you a lot more for having the balls to ask it.
7. Go on a spontaneous trip with the girls
Eventually you’ll have a husband to check in with, kids to find a sitter for and Little League games to attend. So take advantage of your singledom NOW and hit the road with the girls for a last minute jaunt. Drink too much champagne. Stay in a fabulous hotel. Get pampered at the spa. And just gossip like old times. These are the moments you’ll cherish forever.
8. Become totally, completely, 100% financially independent
You never know what will happen down the road so before you commit to forever, it’s crucial to learn how to make it own your own. That means no more car insurance payments from dad, or mom taking care of your cell phone bill. It’s just you, your checkbook, and a big smile on your face because you made it. The only person you have to depend on now is yourself. And that’s truly liberating.
9. Live in a different state…or country
If you’ve lived in the same place your entire life, get out! Go explore. See the world. Move somewhere completely unexpected while you still can, or rent an apartment in the city you’ve always dreamt of dwelling. Even if it’s just for a short period of time, spread your wings and fly. You’re free as a bird baby, and right now, it’s all about you.
10. Fall in love with the person of your dreams
Maybe you’re anxious to get married or fear you’ll never find anyone better, but please, we’re literally begging you, DON’T SETTLE. Wait for the person who makes your heart beat fast. The one who treats you like a princess and lifts you up because he could never tear you down. But most of all, wait for the one who loves you just as much as you love him back and whom you could never, ever in a million, trillion years picture your life without. Then, settle down.