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20 Things Nobody Told You While Growing Up

20 Things Nobody Told You While Growing Up

There are so many things I wish I had known while growing up. No one ever tells you the hard truths of life. Maybe it’s because they can’t stomach it, or maybe it’s because they think it’s just something you have to experience firsthand to understand. Here are twenty things nobody told you while growing up that would’ve been nice to know beforehand:

1. You’re Going to Spend A Lot of Time Figuring Stuff Out

Unless you’re one of the lucky few who already knows what their passion is and what you really enjoy, you will be spending a lot of time trying new things and figuring out what you’re good at and what you like. Don’t be afraid to try new things and fail at them; failing builds character. You have a lot of growing up to do in your 20s, a lot of self-examination and exploration. Use this time wisely to get to know yourself as best as you can–not that you won’t change as you continue to get older, but it’s definitely a time of discovery, getting to know oneself and what you want in this world and what you have to contribute to the world.

2. Don’t Expect Smooth Seas

There will be many challenges, obstacles and curve balls swung your way. Just try to take life as it comes. Don’t fight against the current because you’ll just wear yourself out. If there’s a door that is standing wide open for you and another that you’re trying to get through by knocking it down, sometimes it’s best to take the door that’s already open for you. In other words don’t try to be someone/something you’re not.

3. Learn About Personal Finance Now

Learn how to budget and manage your money, how to open a checking/savings account, and how to use credit wisely and live within your means. Your future self will thank you for it. Buy quality items you can keep around for a long time to come, not cheap crap that breaks that you’ll have to buy again in a year. Invest in yourself, your education, your personal improvement, your health and your relationships to others.

4. Assume Change Will Come

Life is about change; don’t fight it and just go with it. Learn from your mistakes and grow. Let go of things you can’t change. Sometimes change will be so painful you will want to rip your heart out, but you’ll be okay if you just hang on and know that no matter what happens, you will be alright. Win, lose or draw, life will go on and you’ll get another chance to start your life over if things haven’t gone according to plan.

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5. Keep Your Plans Loose

Speaking of plans, keep them loose and flexible. It’s good to have an idea of things you want to accomplish and where you want to be a couple years down the road, but honestly no one knows what’s going to happen tomorrow, let alone 5 years from now. It’s fine to make some plans but be flexible and willing to change them. Remember that people change and things happen that will push you in one direction or another. Don’t waste time beating yourself up because your plans didn’t go the way you wanted. Don’t worry about things you can’t change; focus on making new plans/goals and where you will go from here.

6. Time Is a Limited Resource

Nothing lasts forever. Enjoy every moment that you have. Enjoy life and practice being present in the moment because it goes by extremely fast. There will be both good and bad times. The bad thing about up is there’s always a down. It’s important to really enjoy and savor the good moments in life because you’ll need those memories to reflect back on when the bad times come. The first 10 years after high school go by at a breakneck speed and before you know it you’re 28 and wondering how the time has escaped you.

7. Life is Hard

When you’re a teenager, you’re just at the beginning of your life’s lessons. Life is the toughest teacher you will ever have. “Life is a cruel teacher. She gives the test first, then the lesson.” Life will throw everything that it can at you; it will try to break you and choke you until you can’t breathe, but you can’t let it.

8. You’re Only Young Once

growing up

    Enjoy being young while you are still young! Enjoy being young as much as possible. Enjoy the metabolism and the fun times. Cross stuff off your bucket list while you’re young because no one knows how much time you truly have. Don’t wait until you’re old and can’t or may not be able to do the things you really want to experience. Seriously, you may be broke while you’re young, but that doesn’t matter. You’ve got time to make money and settle down. Travel, explore and do what your heart desires now. You can still get married, have children and a household and career starting in your 20s if you want, but you should try to balance your life with equal amounts of responsibility and fun. The last thing you want to do is look back on missed chances.

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    9. Make Your Health a Priority, Not an Option

    Once you get into your late 20s and early 30s your body is going to start losing metabolism and energy. You’re going to start hurting and going to bed earlier. Start eating better and exercising. Don’t think of it as a choice. Start developing a healthier lifestyle and soon it will become habit. Take care of yourself physically, mentally and spiritually.

    10. Attitude Determines Your Altitude

    Attitude is everything and that’s not something they teach you in school. Having a good attitude can make all the difference in your life. It makes life easier and happier when you have a positive outlook and are able to keep your attitude light and flexible when dealing with other people and with life’s challenges.

    11. How You Treat People Matters

    Treating people with respect and decency can get you a long way in the world. Remember that “honey attracts more flies than vinegar.” Being nice to people really does actually matter to people. You won’t get anywhere tearing other people down or blaming others for anything. Take responsibility for yourself, your actions and your feelings.

    12. Relationships Don’t Come Easy

    Choosing a life partner/spouse is hard. Relationships in general are hard, not just romantic ones but friendships and family relations as well. Stay in touch with people who you really care about and who really care about you. Make an effort to stay an active person in their life if you really care. You will not have as many close friends as you get older and you will probably lose some friends as well. Remember that it is okay, not everyone who comes into your life is meant to stay forever; let them go and cherish the people who are still in your life.

    13. Be Prepared To Deal With Changes in Relationships

    Look at your time with exes and be thankful; even though it didn’t work out, at least you got to experience it and learn from it. You rolled the dice and lost, but at least you took a chance! Don’t think that just because something wasn’t meant to be for your entire life doesn’t mean it didn’t add value and was right where you needed to be at the time.

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    In your 20s, especially if you have a family, it gets harder and harder to spend time with friends because of so many different time demands. You will be pulled in every direction and it’s up to you to decide what your priorities are. Having a couple of close friends you can rely on can make a difference in your life. As they say “shared joy is doubled, shared sorrow is halved.”

    14. Take Every Chance You Get

    Life is about taking chances, grabbing opportunities and taking risks. Don’t be afraid to try something new, move somewhere new, work somewhere new, meet new people and learn something new.

    15. Let Go of Expectations

    Expectations ruin everything and most of the time our expectations are too high for those around us and for ourselves. No one is perfect and nothing is ever going to be perfect. The faster you can learn this and let go of too high or false expectations, the easier life will come to you. Expectations bring heartache and only cause harm. Expect nothing and appreciate everything.

    16. Life Is Complex. Try Not to Worry

    Don’t worry because everyone has ups and downs. It’s just how life is. Life is extremely messy and complicated, but don’t despair because things will work out in the end. Keep living and keep on doing what you enjoy. Don’t be too hard on yourself.

    17. You Get What You Put In

    Happiness, love and confidence come from within. Life is what you make of it and what you put into it. You can create whatever life you want, and if you create that life and it doesn’t work for you anymore, guess what? You can create a whole new life that does work. You may not have a choice in things that happen to you but you have a choice in how you react to them. Try to stay positive no matter what life throws at you and get through the tough times by talking to friends, family and a counselor if you need to.

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    18. You Will Face Rejection

    You will be rejected at some point in your life. Rejection hurts at the very core of your being, but try not to take it too personally. Oftentimes, when you’re rejected it has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the person rejecting you. Take it in stride, let it slide off your back and move on. I know this is easier said than done, but it will go a long way in making you feel better and happier.

    19. You Will Not Have Everything Figured Out Anytime Soon

    If you don’t have everything figured out by the time you’re 30, you’re not alone. If you’re not where you want to be in your life or career, don’t sweat it, you still have time. Some people never figure out what they really want to do with their lives, but they get a lot of great experience, learn new things and can transfer their skills to many types of jobs. If you know what you want to do in life, start doing it immediately, practice it as much as possible and you will get better at it.

    20. Love More and Keep Your Heart Open

    Love is all that really matters in the end. Give of yourself more than anything. Try to be patient, empathetic, understanding, caring and gentle with other people. Get to know people better by asking questions and listening attentively. People usually like to talk about themselves and questions are a great way to get conversations going. Love people for who they are, just as they are, and realize that everyone is a work in progress! Life is a continual work in progress. We’re all just trying to find our way, and we’re all confused and looking for contentment. Life is a journey, and happiness is not a destination to arrive at, but a way of living.

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    Amanda Bradbury

    Amanda is a passionate writer who shares lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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    Last Updated on September 18, 2020

    13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

    13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

    For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

    “We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

    “It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

    Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

    You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

    Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

    1. Take a step back and evaluate

    When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

    1. What is the problem?
    2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
    3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
    4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
    5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

    Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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    2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

    If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

    At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

    Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

    3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

    Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

    4. Process your thoughts/emotions

    Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

    1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
    2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
    3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
    4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

    5. Acknowledge your thoughts

    Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

    By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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    Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

    6. Give yourself a break

    If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

    7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

    A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

    Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

    After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

    8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

    As Helen Keller once said,

    “Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

    Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

    9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

    In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

    1. What’s the situation?
    2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
    3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
    4. Take action on your next steps!

    After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

    10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

    A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

    Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

    For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

    11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

    No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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    12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

    No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

    13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

    There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

    After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

    Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

    Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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