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34 Most Difficult Things You Have To Learn In Your 20s

34 Most Difficult Things You Have To Learn In Your 20s

When you’re a 20 something, you know you need to be mature because you’ve grown up. You’re seen as an adult, not a kid any more. It’s reality, and you really should face it. The faster you learn the most difficult life lessons, the sooner you can lead a great and successful life. Rich Tatum shared the most difficult things he wished he knew when he was 20 on quora:

  1. Love hurts, but not as much as not loving.
  2. The friendships you nurture will have a greater effect on your life than where you work or what you earn.
  3. You are not your job. You are not your bankroll. You are not the sum of your possessions.
  4. The company does not love you. It has no heart. You are replaceable. Keep your parachute handy.
  5. Few decisions will ever shape your future life more than who you choose to marry. To marry well, you must choose well.
  6. Love is a commitment.
  7. Believe it or not, passions grow out of your values. Make early, wise choices to value what (and who) is good, trustworthy, and praiseworthy.
  8. Integrity preserved is honor won.
  9. Rejoice in your health. It fades fast.
  10. Find a passion. Pick a hobby, own it: photography, juggling—whatever. Get your 10K hours of perfect practice in early and change your life.
  11. Don’t bother comparing yourself to others—this only leads to heartbreak, anger, and disappointment.
  12. Most disappointments grow from unmet expectations. Set realistic expectations for yourself, based on your strengths, then strive to exceed them.
  13. Don’t drive others to meet expectations they’ve committed to — lead, inspire, and help them do it.
  14. Don’t set expectations for others when they haven’t or cannot commit to them.
  15. Don’t complain. Either change your situation, learn to cope, or change your perspective.
  16. Don’t worry about making big bucks out of the gate, worry first about doing whatever you have to do excellently.
  17. Little stuff matters—even in lowly jobs. The boss notices and even if not, your peers and colleagues do.
  18. 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.
  19. 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…be humble.
  20. Failure is an opportunity: no great man or woman ever achieved significance without great failures to learn from.
  21. Never withhold an apology when it’s merited. Deliver it quickly, sincerely, and personally—before resentment festers.
  22. You don’t need to nurture old guilt when you’re forgiven. But remembering the shame can help you avoid repeats.
  23. Mere belief in anything signifies little more than assent. It’s trust and behavior that reveal where convictions lie.
  24. The main thing you need to do quickly is to stop doing things quickly. Trade hurry for calm, confidence, and precision.
  25. Everybody needs an editor. Everybody.
  26. Get your work done first so you can play without guilt. Even better, make work play and the fun never ends!
  27. If you want to develop your passion and gift, stop worrying about the things you do poorly. Go with your strengths!
  28. 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.
  29. If you’re bored, you’re doing it wrong.
  30. The skills that will help your career most are the abilities to assimilate, communicate, and persuade. Keep learning.
  31. Nothing in this life—no pain, no agony, no failure—compares to the eternal joy of Heaven. Live in light of eternity.
  32. 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.
  33. 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.
  34. 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.

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Featured photo credit: Multiracial Young People Holding Hands in a Circle via shutterstock.com

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Anna Chui

Anna is a communication expert and a life enthusiast. She's the editor of Lifehack and loves to write about love, life, and passion.

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

Reference

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