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https://www.quora.com/profile/Rich-Tatum Rich Tatum
287.1k Views • Answer featured in
Here are some things I really, really wish I knew when I was twenty.
Love hurts, but not as much as not loving.
The friendships you nurture will have a greater effect on your life than where you work or what you earn.
You are not your job. You are not your bankroll. You are not the sum of your possessions.
The company does not love you. It has no heart. You are replaceable. Keep your parachute handy.
Few decisions will ever shape your future life more than who you choose to marry. To marry well, you must choose well.
Love is a commitment.
Your passions will grow out of your values. Make early, wise choices to value what (and who) is good, trustworthy, and praiseworthy.
Integrity preserved is honor won.
Rejoice in your health. It fades fast.
Find a passion. Pick a hobby, own it: photography, juggling—whatever. Get your 10K hours of perfect practice in early and change your life.
Don’t bother comparing yourself to others—this only leads to heartbreak, anger, and disappointment.
Most disappointments arise from unmet expectations. Set realistic expectations for yourself, based on your strengths, then strive to exceed them.
Don’t drive others to meet expectations they’ve committed to — lead, inspire, and help them do it.
Don’t set expectations for others when they have not or cannot commit to them.
Expectations you never communicate and negotiate will rarely be met—except by accident.
Don’t complain. Either change your situation, learn to cope, or change perspective.
Don’t worry about getting a big salary in your youth: first learn to execute tasks with skill, excellence, and grace.
Little stuff matters—even in lowly jobs. The boss notices—and even if not, your peers and colleagues will.
Ultimately, privacy is a myth: God sees everything. The cloud records everything. NSA files everything. So, live transparently and don't waste useless energy hiding failures.
Don’t look down on others because they don’t have what you didn’t earn: your intellect, your beauty, and your culture of birth are undeserved gifts. Stay humble.
Failure is an opportunity: no great man or woman ever achieved significance without great failures. Fail forward.
Never withhold an apology when it’s merited. Deliver it quickly, sincerely, and personally—before resentment festers.
You don’t need to nurture old guilt when you’re forgiven. But remembering the shame can help you avoid repeats.
Mere belief in anything signifies little more than assent: trust and behavior reveal where true convictions lie.
The main thing you need to do quickly is to stop doing things quickly. Trade hurry for calm, confidence, and precision.
Everybody needs an editor. Everybody. Especially editors.
Get your work done first so you can play without guilt. Even better, make work play and the fun never ends!
If you want to develop your passion and gift, stop worrying about the things you do poorly. Go with your strengths!
Avoid fights. Seriously. Avoid them like a plague: nobody wins in a fight, even if you walk away unscathed. But when a fight picks you, leave everything on the mat and give it your all. Hold nothing back.
If you're bored, you’re doing it wrong.
The skills that will help your career most are the abilities to assimilate, communicate, and persuade. Keep learning.
Nothing in this life—no pain, no agony, no failure—compares to the eternal joy of Heaven. Live in light of eternity.
Protect your joy. Nothing is easier to lose by over-thinking, overanalyzing, and second-guessing. On the other hand, always consider the long-term consequences of your choices: stupid decisions made in the moment can rob you of years of joy and happiness.
Your purpose in life determines how you frame events. You can maintain your joy in the most dire circumstances if you find meaning for your life. Dig deep.
It truly matters what you think about. Think well by reading good books, building good, loving relationships, having good conversation, and imitating great people.
I'm still learning — in fact I haven’t fully appreciated most of the list I made, myself. And I’m still adding to it. But I’m getting better. Rich »∵« http://twitter.com/RichTatumhttp://twitter.com/RichTatum
https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-most-difficult-and-useful-things-people-have-to-learn-in-their-20s/answer/Rich-TatumUpdated 10 Jul •
https://www.quora.com/profile/Jim-Stone-4Jim Stone, Using his stone-age brain to navigate a world of accelerating change.
You can do anything, but you can't do everything.
That's the pithy version. A little more accurately . . . you have a very large number of things you can do with your life, but you can't do more than one or two to a high level of excellence. This has many correlates: 1. Don't "follow your passion" when you're 20: Often people who aim to follow their passions will develop new passions whenever their current track becomes difficult. This can lead to a life of jumping around too much and never getting truly good at anything. 2. . . . build career capital instead: Cal Newport gives this advice in
http://www.amazon.com/Good-They-Cant-Ignore-You/dp/1455509124So Good They Can't Ignore You, and (applied to most people) I heartily agree. When you're 20, you don't know all the things there are to be passionate about. You will also find that your deepest passions will come when you're truly good at something. Get good and connected first, and then, when you are 35, you will naturally find yourself following passions much more compelling than the silly little things you called "passions" when you were 20. 3. Don't seek autonomy too soon. Develop excellence in your field, get some connections, get a good feel for your industry, and squirrel away some "frak you" money before trying to set out on your own. It will usually work out better that way. 4. Focus on what Paul Graham calls "upwind skills". (
http://paulgraham.com/hs.htmlWhat You'll Wish You'd Known) Upwind skills are things like writing, mathematics, design and programming. These skills take time to build (so it's better to start sooner rather than later), and they will keep your options open more than other areas of focus. If you study mathematics, your knowledge and skills can likely be applied to dozens of fields down the road, depending on where your opportunities lie. If you focus on French Lit, your options will be limited. I'm not advising you to avoid French Lit so much as encouraging you to make sure you learn to write, learn to program, learn mathematics, or learn design. At the least you should pick one of those four areas to develop throughout your 20s, and if you develop more than one of them to a high level of competence, you will probably stay in high demand right up to the edge of the Singularity :) 5. Be less judgmental. When you see a doctor who doesn't know how to troubleshoot his car problems, don't scoff. Sure you COULD become a doctor if you wanted to. And you COULD become a master mechanic if you wanted to, but you likely won't become both. You'll learn soon enough that you, too, will need to specialize, and can't become good at everything. So stop projecting in your daydreams to a future self that is good at writing, programming, medicine, design, history, and auto mechanics. Just because you have a passing knowledge of those things at 20 doesn't mean you'll be an expert in all of them when you're 35. So don't judge the practitioner of X who shows a poor knowledge of Y. Instead appreciate how he or she does X. For more thoughts like this, check out
http://www.workwithflow.com/blog/Work With Flow.e in the moment can rob you of years of joy and happiness.
It truly matters what you think about. Think well by reading good books, building g