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20 Things 20-Somethings Need To Stop Doing Now

20 Things 20-Somethings Need To Stop Doing Now

Having reached the end of my twenties, I realized that looking back, there were a lot of things I did that made me lose focus and not make the most of my youth and energy.

Many 20-somethings make the same mistakes and don’t tend to realize it until the very end, upon reflection of how they spent their last 10 years.

Here are 20 things 20-somethings need to stop doing now in order to kickstart their lives and make rapid progress.

1) Putting off tasks that are boring.

You never seem to realize until much later that the things that are worthwhile in life are often very boring. The things that improve you as a person tend to be difficult and boring to do. Embrace the boredom and do it anyway. It’s a brilliant way to build character and perseverance.

2) Putting off your career in favour of traveling.

While traveling is a brilliant way to build your worldliness, many youngsters use it as an excuse to put off the fact that they need to establish themselves. Being young and energetic is great, but it doesn’t last. Use the time to do something that’s of a higher purpose, while you still have the energy.

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3) Ignoring parental advice.

Your parents might not make sense to you and seem against you right now, but that doesn’t mean they don’t know what they’re talking about. Its always advised to follow their advice even if it doesn’t make sense at the time‒you will thank them when you’re older.

4) Putting off going to the gym in favor of drinking and partying with friends.

As with point #1, going to the gym can be grueling and painful. It is very rarely fun to do the same things over and over again. It may feel like a waste versus going out with friends on a bender. But you will thank yourself 10 years from now when you see your friends overweight while you’re still youthful and in great shape.

5) Complaining that life is too difficult.

Life is difficult for a reason. It is designed so that we work hard for it and appreciate the things we eventually get. Getting things for free is hardly ever worthwhile and rarely ever valued. The harder you work, the more grounded you become as a person. You might as well embrace it.

6) Comparing yourself to your friends and peers.

While it’s good to have role models and ideals, it’s never healthy to frequently compare yourself with other people. Everyone has their own path to follow with different goals and ambitions. In the end, the only person you’re really in competition with is yourself.

7) Not keeping a healthy diet.

Your diet becomes increasingly important as you age as your metabolism starts to slow down. What you can typically get away with eating when young isn’t necessarily the same as you get older, since what you eat makes a longer term impact. Start getting used to eating more healthily and investing time in educating yourself on healthy nutrition.

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8) Excessive sleeping.

Too much sleep is just as unhealthy as too little of it. It also makes the days far shorter, which could otherwise be spent doing more productive things. Develop a healthy sleeping schedule and try to stick to it on a daily basis.

9) Practicing poor time management.

Time is the most valuable thing we have. Once it’s gone, you can’t get it back. It’s therefore imperative to know how to manage your time effectively and to not waste it doing things that won’t benefit you moving forwards.

10) Putting off your passions.

If you’re currently lacking motivation to do anything, it is precisely because of putting off your passion. Maybe its because you just don’t know what it is yet. You should use your 20s to discover what you really enjoy. Once you’ve found it, spend time developing it. It will be of great value for you in the future.

11) Looking for quick fixes and shortcuts.

The media tends to convince us that there are easy fixes to difficult problems. But you don’t tend to realize the truth until you see that it was all designed to get you to ‘buy their products.’ The real solution is often a bitter pill to swallow‒it’s hard work and effort that will provide you with long term solutions.

12) Looking at life in black and white.

When you’re young, you think you have life all figured out, only to end up seeing something that tarnishes that belief a few months later. This happens throughout your entire life, and you eventually realize that there really is no set belief or construct that governs the world.

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Everything is open to interpretation. What’s important is how you personally define it for yourself.

13) Managing your money badly.

When you get your first taste of money with your first paycheck, it’s very easy to splash it out on things you once were not able to afford. This is a big mistake and will build bad habits toward your relationship with money.

Instead, learn the difference between assets and liabilities and focus on investing your money in places where you’re likely to make even more. The sooner you learn to do this, the sooner you’ll experience financial security. And another thing‒lay off the credit cards!

14) Watching too much television.

Television is perhaps the biggest influencer of all the media. It instills beliefs and values without you even being aware of it. While some TV is good, limit it as much as you can in your daily activities and replace it with things that are designed to mentally stimulate you.

15) Being influenced by friends.

Your friends will seem like your backbone in your 20s. They’ll appear to have your back during tough times. As a result, you won’t want to let them down and will do anything to conform to their ways. The truth is this: they will all move on and start their own families. You will see less and less of them as you get older.

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You will come to realize that no one else really has your back besides you and your own family. Learn to count on yourself and be the one to judge your current state in life.

16) Not focusing on the big picture.

Whatever it is you do when you’re young will make a dramatic impact on your life later on. In general, life gets harder as you age. People will no longer go easy on you because you’re young and inexperienced and will begin to expect more from you.

The sooner you focus on the outcome of your future, the better equipped you’ll be at preparing yourself and becoming focused.

17) Doing things with no thought of where it will lead you.

As with point #16, it’s important to know where your actions will take you prior to doing them. It might seem fun in the beginning, but it’s always wise to weigh things up before taking the plunge.

18) Worrying about what other people think of you.

When all is said and done. No one really cares whether you succeed or fail. All that matters is what you think of yourself‒are you happy with what you’re doing? If you are, stay on track. In the end, that’s all that’s really going to matter.

19) Not focusing on your talents.

Spend time discovering what you’re really good at and nurturing it as much as possible. By the time you reach your 30s, you will have acquired 10 years of expertise and have developed a skill you can market and sell moving forward.

20) Not giving it your all in the things that matter.

Whatever you do, DON’T dabble. If you decide to do something in your life. Give it your best shot and become ambitious. You will feel a lot better about yourself and move your life towards a more prosperous direction.

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Last Updated on March 14, 2019

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

Recruiters might hold thousands of interviews in their careers and a lot of them are reporting the same thing—that most candidates play it safe with the questions they ask, or have no questions to ask in a job interview at all.

For job applicants, this approach is crazy! This is a job that you’re going to dedicate a lot of hours to and that might have a huge impact on your future career. Don’t throw away the chance to figure out if the position is perfect for you.

Here are 7 killer questions to ask in a job interview that will both impress your counterpart and give you some really useful insights into whether this job will be a dream … or a nightmare.

1. What are some challenges I might come up against this role?

A lesser candidate might ask, “what does a typical day look like in this role?” While this is a perfectly reasonable question to ask in an interview, focusing on potential challenges takes you much further because it indicates that you already are visualizing yourself in the role.

It’s impressive because it shows that you are not afraid of challenges, and you are prepared to strategize a game plan upfront to make sure you succeed if you get the job.

It can also open up a conversation about how you’ve solved problems in the past which can be a reassuring exercise for both you and the hiring manager.

How it helps you:

If you ask the interviewer to describe a typical day, you may get a vibrant picture of all the lovely things you’ll get to do in this job and all the lovely people you’ll get to do them with.

Asking about potential roadblocks means you hear the other side of the story—dysfunctional teams, internal politics, difficult clients, bootstrap budgets and so on. This can help you decide if you’re up for the challenge or whether, for the sake of your sanity, you should respectfully decline the job offer.

2. What are the qualities of really successful people in this role?

Employers don’t want to hire someone who goes through the motions; they want to hire someone who will excel.

Asking this question shows that you care about success, too. How could they not hire you with a dragon-slayer attitude like that?

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How it helps you:

Interviewers hire people who are great people to work with, but the definition of “great people” differs from person to person.

Does this company hire and promote people with a specific attitude, approach, worth ethic or communication style? Are the most successful people in this role strong extroverts who love to talk and socialize when you are studious and reserved? Does the company reward those who work insane hours when you’re happiest in a more relaxed environment?

If so, then this may not be the right match for you.

Whatever the answer is, you can decide whether you have what it takes for the manager to be happy with your performance in this role. And if the interviewer has no idea what success looks like for this position, this is a sign to proceed with extreme caution.

3. From the research I did on your company, I noticed the culture really supports XYZ. Can you tell me more about that element of the culture and how it impacts this job role?

Of course, you could just ask “what is the culture like here? ” but then you would miss a great opportunity to show that you’ve done your research!

Interviewers give BIG bonus point to those who read up and pay attention, and you’ve just pointed out that (a) you’re diligent in your research (b) you care about the company culture and (c) you’re committed to finding a great cultural fit.

How it helps you:

This question is so useful because it lets you pick an element of the culture that you really care about and that will have the most impact on whether you are happy with the organization.

For example, if training and development is important to you, then you need to know what’s on offer so you don’t end up in a dead-end job with no learning opportunities.

Companies often talk a good talk, and their press releases may be full of shiny CSR initiatives and all the headline-grabbing diversity programs they’re putting in place. This is your opportunity to look under the hood and see if the company lives its values on the ground.

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A company that says it is committed to doing the right thing by customers should not judge success by the number of up-sells an employee makes, for instance. Look for consistency, so you aren’t in for a culture shock after you start.

4. What is the promotion path for this role, and how would my performance on that path be measured?

To be clear, you are not asking when you will get promoted. Don’t go there—it’s presumptuous, and it indicates that you think you are better than the role you have applied for.

A career-minded candidate, on the other hand, usually has a plan that she’s working towards. This question shows you have a great drive toward growth and advancement and an intention to stick with the company beyond your current state.

How it helps you:

One word: hierarchy.

All organizations have levels of work and authority—executives, upper managers, line managers, the workforce, and so on. Understanding the hierarchical structure gives you power, because you can decide if you can work within it and are capable of climbing through its ranks, or whether it will be endlessly frustrating to you.

In a traditional pyramid hierarchy, for example, the people at the bottom tend to have very little autonomy to make decisions. This gets better as you rise up through the pyramid, but even middle managers have little power to create policy; they are more concerned with enforcing the rules the top leaders make.

If having a high degree of autonomy and accountability is important to you, you may do better in a flat hierarchy where work teams can design their own way of achieving the corporate goals.

5. What’s the most important thing the successful candidate could accomplish in their first 3 months/6 months/year?

Of all the questions to ask in a job interview, this one is impressive because it shows that you identify with and want to be a successful performer, and not just an average one.

Here, you’re drilling down into what the company needs, and needs quite urgently, proving that you’re all about adding value to the organization and not just about what’s in it for you.

How it helps you:

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Most job descriptions come with 8, 10 or 12 different job responsibilities and a lot of them with be boilerplate or responsibilities that someone in HR thinks are associated with this role. This question gives you a better sense of which responsibilities are the most important—and they may not be what initially attracted you to the role.

If you like the idea of training juniors, for example, but success is judged purely on your sales figures, then is this really the job you thought you were applying for?

This question will also give you an idea of what kind of learning curve you’re expected to have and whether you’ll get any ramp-up time before getting down to business. If you’re the type of person who likes to jump right in and get things done, for instance, you may not be thrilled to hear that you’re going to spend the first three months shadowing a peer.

6. What do you like about working here?

This simple question is all about building rapport with the interviewer. People like to talk about themselves, and the interviewer will be flattered that you’re interested in her opinions.

Hopefully, you’ll find some great connection points that the two of you share. What similar things drive you head into the office each day? How will you fit into the culture?

How it helps you:

You can learn a lot from this question. Someone who genuinely enjoys his job will be able to list several things they like, and their answers will sound passionate and sincere. If not….well, you might consider that a red flag.

Since you potentially can learn a lot about the company culture from this question, it’s a good idea to figure out upfront what’s important to you. Maybe you’re looking for a hands-off boss who values independent thought and creativity? Maybe you work better in environments that move at a rapid, exciting pace?

Whatever’s important to you, listen carefully and see if you can find any common ground.

7. Based on this interview, do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications for the role?

What a great closing question to ask in a job interview! It shows that you’re not afraid of feedback—in fact, you are inviting it. Not being able to take criticism is a red flag for employers, who need to know that you’ll act on any “coaching moments” with a good heart.

As a bonus, asking this question shows that you are really interested in the position and wish to clear up anything that may be holding the company back from hiring you.

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How it helps you:

What a devious beast this question is! On the surface, it looks straightforward, but it’s actually giving you four key pieces of information.

First, is the manager capable of giving you feedback when put on the spot like this? Some managers are scared of giving feedback, or don’t think it’s important enough to bother outside of a formal performance appraisal. Do you want to work for a boss like that? How will you improve if no one is telling you what you did wrong?

Second, can the manager give feedback in a constructive way without being too pillowy or too confrontational? It’s unfair to expect the interviewer to have figured out your preferred way of receiving feedback in the space of an interview, but if she come back with a machine-gun fire of shortcomings or one of those corporate feedback “sandwiches” (the doozy slipped between two slices of compliment), then you need to ask yourself, can you work with someone who gives feedback like that?

Third, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about before you leave the interview. This gives you the chance to make a final, tailored sales pitch so you can convince the interviewer that she should not be worried about those things.

Fourth, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about period. If turnover is keeping him up at night, then your frequent job hopping might get a lot of additional scrutiny. If he’s facing some issues with conflict or communication, then he might raise concerns regarding your performance in this area.

Listen carefully: the concerns that are being raised about you might actually be a proxy for problems in the wider organization.

Making Your Interview Work for You

Interviews are a two-way street. While it is important to differentiate yourself from every other candidate, understand that convincing the interviewer you’re the right person for the role goes hand-in-hand with figuring out if the job is the right fit for you.

Would you feel happy in a work environment where the people, priorities, culture and management style were completely at odds with the way you work? Didn’t think so!

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Featured photo credit: Amy Hirschi via unsplash.com

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