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10 Things You Cared about Growing up 10 Years Ago but Don’t Now

10 Things You Cared about Growing up 10 Years Ago but Don’t Now

Ahh, young adulthood—full of changes, inquiries and experiences. We all turn out differently, but there are some common “coming of age” themes in most of our lives. Check out these ten things that most of us worried about at some time or another, and be thankful for the wisdom and reassurance that comes with experience!

1. You wanted to be doing what the “cool kids” were doing.

There was a group of “those kids” in everybody’s lives growing up. It doesn’t matter if, ten years ago, you were in middle school, high school, college or already starting your first grad job—there’s a clique everywhere you look. For some reason, they set the standard for what was cool and for an even stranger reason, we all listened.

2. You wondered if you’d ever meet ‘the one.”

Chances are, you’ve now met “the one,” or one of them, or you’re just happily living your life and not letting it be ruled by your relationship status. Either way, hopefully you’ve learned to love yourself and know that your self worth isn’t determined by a big, white, Cinderella wedding.

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3. You needed to know if you were “normal.”

You are. What’s “normal,” anyway? Whenever anybody says to me, “I’d give anything to go back to my teenage years” I think, “really?” I, for one, am thrilled to have moved past the raging hormones and constant self doubt that growing up brings.

4. You were worried about saying / doing / wearing the “right” thing.

See above: “what’s normal, anyway?” The right thing and not following it could be ammunition against you in your younger years. Now you’re free to nerd out to whatever you’re passionate about and not give a flying saucer over who cares.

5. You longed to get your parents off your back.

…and move out, be free to “LIVE MY OWN LIFE FOR ONCE MUM, GOD!” Now you’d trade in your mortgage stress and kids’ school fees for five minutes of adolescent freedom. It’s all worth it though, right?

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6. You weren’t sure if you were on track with other people of your age/ gender/ peer group.

You were, but that didn’t stop you from obsessing over the things that felt so secret and weird that you’d die if anybody else found out. Somewhere on the path to adulthood, the track meandered off in several different directions, and we all stopped worrying about extreme conformity.

7. You cared what your Myspace profile said about you.

Now, it’s all about Facebook / Twitter / Your Wellness Blog / what that picture of your dinner says about you! I kid, but hopefully for most of us, there’s less pressure to manage our online presence in a “how cool am I!” kind of way. I do feel for today’s teens, growing up in a world completely saturated with online social sharing.

8. You listened to what your “frenemies” said about you.

We’ve all been there with the toxic relationships and BFFs that actually weren’t. As you got older, you realized the benefit of healthy relationships and (hopefully) ditched those out to sabotage you.

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9. You didn’t know what you were going to do with your life.

Ten years ago, the idea that your interests, skills and talents might change was a foreign one. You needed to know how your life was going to play out and what you were going to “be” when you grew up. Now, you’re too busy living, changing and adapting. One of the best things about maturing is realizing that life is what you make it. Fancy a career change? Go for it—the world is your oyster!

10. You wanted to know “what it all meant.”

Young adulthood is full of new experiences and one of the things that makes us human is trying to make sense of those experiences. You may have been worried that everything had to have a significant meaning or be an indicator of your future. Now, you’re more happy to go with the flow and recognize that, sometimes, a new idea is just that—it doesn’t have to reshape the fiber of your very being!

Here’s to growing up, fond memories and living with hindsight. What changes do you think will take place for you in the next ten years? What do you worry about now that you secretly suspect will just be another phase?

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Featured photo credit: Picjumbo via picjumbo.com

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Last Updated on February 11, 2021

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

How often have you said something simple, only to have the person who you said this to misunderstand it or twist the meaning completely around? Nodding your head in affirmative? Then this means that you are being unclear in your communication.

Communication should be simple, right? It’s all about two people or more talking and explaining something to the other. The problem lies in the talking itself, somehow we end up being unclear, and our words, attitude or even the way of talking becomes a barrier in communication, most of the times unknowingly. We give you six common barriers to communication, and how to get past them; for you to actually say what you mean, and or the other person to understand it as well…

The 6 Walls You Need to Break Down to Make Communication Effective

Think about it this way, a simple phrase like “what do you mean” can be said in many different ways and each different way would end up “communicating” something else entirely. Scream it at the other person, and the perception would be anger. Whisper this is someone’s ear and others may take it as if you were plotting something. Say it in another language, and no one gets what you mean at all, if they don’t speak it… This is what we mean when we say that talking or saying something that’s clear in your head, many not mean that you have successfully communicated it across to your intended audience – thus what you say and how, where and why you said it – at times become barriers to communication.[1]

Perceptual Barrier

The moment you say something in a confrontational, sarcastic, angry or emotional tone, you have set up perceptual barriers to communication. The other person or people to whom you are trying to communicate your point get the message that you are disinterested in what you are saying and sort of turn a deaf ear. In effect, you are yelling your point across to person who might as well be deaf![2]

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The problem: When you have a tone that’s not particularly positive, a body language that denotes your own disinterest in the situation and let your own stereotypes and misgivings enter the conversation via the way you talk and gesture, the other person perceives what you saying an entirely different manner than say if you said the same while smiling and catching their gaze.

The solution: Start the conversation on a positive note, and don’t let what you think color your tone, gestures of body language. Maintain eye contact with your audience, and smile openly and wholeheartedly…

Attitudinal Barrier

Some people, if you would excuse the language, are simply badass and in general are unable to form relationships or even a common point of communication with others, due to their habit of thinking to highly or too lowly of them. They basically have an attitude problem – since they hold themselves in high esteem, they are unable to form genuine lines of communication with anyone. The same is true if they think too little of themselves as well.[3]

The problem: If anyone at work, or even in your family, tends to roam around with a superior air – anything they say is likely to be taken by you and the others with a pinch, or even a bag of salt. Simply because whenever they talk, the first thing to come out of it is their condescending attitude. And in case there’s someone with an inferiority complex, their incessant self-pity forms barriers to communication.

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The solution: Use simple words and an encouraging smile to communicate effectively – and stick to constructive criticism, and not criticism because you are a perfectionist. If you see someone doing a good job, let them know, and disregard the thought that you could have done it better. It’s their job so measure them by industry standards and not your own.

Language Barrier

This is perhaps the commonest and the most inadvertent of barriers to communication. Using big words, too much of technical jargon or even using just the wrong language at the incorrect or inopportune time can lead to a loss or misinterpretation of communication. It may have sounded right in your head and to your ears as well, but if sounded gobbledygook to the others, the purpose is lost.

The problem: Say you are trying to explain a process to the newbies and end up using every technical word and industry jargon that you knew – your communication has failed if the newbie understood zilch. You have to, without sounding patronizing, explain things to someone in the simplest language they understand instead of the most complex that you do.

The solution: Simplify things for the other person to understand you, and understand it well. Think about it this way: if you are trying to explain something scientific to a child, you tone it down to their thinking capacity, without “dumbing” anything down in the process.[4]

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Emotional Barrier

Sometimes, we hesitate in opening our mouths, for fear of putting our foot in it! Other times, our emotional state is so fragile that we keep it and our lips zipped tightly together lest we explode. This is the time that our emotions become barriers to communication.[5]

The problem: Say you had a fight at home and are on a slow boil, muttering, in your head, about the injustice of it all. At this time, you have to give someone a dressing down over their work performance. You are likely to transfer at least part of your angst to the conversation then, and talk about unfairness in general, leaving the other person stymied about what you actually meant!

The solution: Remove your emotions and feelings to a personal space, and talk to the other person as you normally would. Treat any phobias or fears that you have and nip them in the bud so that they don’t become a problem. And remember, no one is perfect.

Cultural Barrier

Sometimes, being in an ever-shrinking world means that inadvertently, rules can make cultures clash and cultural clashes can turn into barriers to communication. The idea is to make your point across without hurting anyone’s cultural or religious sentiments.

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The problem: There are so many ways culture clashes can happen during communication and with cultural clashes; it’s not always about ethnicity. A non-smoker may have problems with smokers taking breaks; an older boss may have issues with younger staff using the Internet too much.

The solution: Communicate only what is necessary to get the point across – and eave your personal sentiments or feelings out of it. Try to be accommodative of the other’s viewpoint, and in case you still need to work it out, do it one to one, to avoid making a spectacle of the other person’s beliefs.[6]

Gender Barrier

Finally, it’s about Men from Mars and Women from Venus. Sometimes, men don’t understand women and women don’t get men – and this gender gap throws barriers in communication. Women tend to take conflict to their graves, literally, while men can move on instantly. Women rely on intuition, men on logic – so inherently, gender becomes a big block in successful communication.[7]

The problem: A male boss may inadvertently rub his female subordinates the wrong way with anti-feminism innuendoes, or even have problems with women taking too many family leaves. Similarly, women sometimes let their emotions get the better of them, something a male audience can’t relate to.

The solution: Talk to people like people – don’t think or classify them into genders and then talk accordingly. Don’t make comments or innuendos that are gender biased – you don’t have to come across as an MCP or as a bra-burning feminist either. Keep gender out of it.

And remember, the key to successful communication is simply being open, making eye contact and smiling intermittently. The battle is usually half won when you say what you mean in simple, straightforward words and keep your emotions out of it.

Reference

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