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34 Tips for Your Younger Self

34 Tips for Your Younger Self
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    In January, we asked you what advice you’d give your younger self as part of our regular We Ask, You Answer feature.

    There was plenty of great advice—and a lot of catharsis, it seemed—and we’ve collected some of the best tips for you here.

    1. Don’t worry about the future.

    2. Follow your passion, even if it does not pay very well. If you are good at what you do and love your career choice – the money will eventually follow.

    3. Now is the time to establish good habits for life in every area; they might take a lot of hard work to form, but it’s worth the effort and missed television.

    4. Listen more, listen better, pay attention and remember! Many people have been there and done that and can save you some headaches—but only if you listen.

    5. There are some narcissistic whackjobs and bitter people in the world who will make your life a misery and who are so firmly embedded in their own version of reality that they’ll never change. Should you have the misfortune to encounter such a person, in whatever capacity, don’t hang around any longer than you absolutely need to.

    6. If you get an idea that inspires you, act on it immediately! The best ideas are often the first to fade from memory, or get put on the backburner indefinitely.

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    7. Pay more attention to advice from adults. Or, pay less attention to advice from adults.

    8. Keep playing, laughing and having fun, don’t get too serious!

    9. When you’re planning your college major, don’t just think about the classes or subject matters you like most. If you want to climb the management chain, take management classes, not just marketing classes!

    10. Don’t go out to eat so much; put the money in a high-interest account instead! Self-control with your money means freedom to live the way you want to live down the road.

    11. Beyond just saving, learn to manage money now so you won’t make so many stupid mistakes later or develop nasty habits.

    12. Don’t stress about relationships. If it works, it works, if it doesn’t, it doesn’t.

    13. Be more assertive! Be more spontaneous.

    14. Tell your parents and grandparents you love them. You don’t know how soon they will die.

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    15. There’s so much you don’t know, but you have such a great opportunity to keep learning. Never, ever stop learning.

    16. Never ever stop asking questions about how the world works. Make “Why?” your favorite one.

    17. Go to a state university. Going to a private college isn’t worth the extra money.

    18. Learn about maintaining optimum health while you still have it. Get started with healthy eating and exercise young, so you don’t spend half your life worrying about weight, blood pressure, heart attacks and all sorts of weight-related problems.

    19. Don’t be afraid to ask people for things you want if the worst outcome is that they say no.

    20. Get over it and kiss the girl!

    21. Don’t stress out all the time. It will eventually take its toll on you in various forms.

    22. Have fun while you can. Go out with your friends. Plenty of opportunity is going to come your way.

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    23. Stand up for yourself once in a while. People will respect that.

    24. Don’t just save on take-out. Save 10% off the top of every paycheck and do not touch it until you retire.

    25. Be prepared for your life to change. Realize that the relationship you thought you had is going to end. Don’t let what is happening paralyze you with fear.

    26. Be aware of life-altering decisions when you’re young. Think seriously about having kids because they will dramatically change your life.

    27. Expand yourself, even if you are sure where you are going. Learn something totally unrelated to your passion. Visit a place you wouldn’t normally go. A flexible mind and attitude will take you very far and allow you to handle the uncertainties in life.

    28. Make your life your passion. Don’t get stuck being defined by your job. Start a website, get your name out there, volunteer, teach.

    29. You’re (probably) not going to die next week. Figure out what you want to do with your life. You don’t want to be 37, broke, unemployed, and still living in your bedroom at mom’s house.

    30. Don’t put off being happy. Don’t be the person that says, “I’ll be happy when…” Happiness is only found in the present. Now, today. Try to find some happiness in the journey of life—don’t think about the destination. It’s just a wooden box.

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    31. Do all the crazy stuff. Take the risks. They’re totally worth it!

    32. Whatever you do, believe in yourself. You have untapped potential, and you will accomplish everything you have dreamed about. No one has the right to tell you can’t do something great in your life. Don’t allow them to justify their mediocre lives by destroying your dreams.

    33. Improve your skill set. Learn a foreign language. Learn a martial art. Learn web design. Learn piano.

    34. As for the best piece of advice anyone had to offer: take a piece of paper. The lottery numbers for January 1998 are…

    You can check out the unedited list of tips in the original We Ask, You Answer column. All in all, Lifehack readers left 60 responses. Thank for taking part and sharing your retrospective advice!

    Unfortunately, retrospect is something that comes too late to be of much use to ourselves in the past—but your experience may just help another reader avoid the mistakes that you found yourself making throughout your life.

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    How to Keep Yourself Awake at Work Without Caffeine

    How to Keep Yourself Awake at Work Without Caffeine

    Keeping yourself awake at work can be a real challenge when you’re bored, exhausted or sleep-deprived.

    But before you reach for that can of Red Bull, bottle of Mountain Dew, or pot of coffee, try these healthy remedies to stimulate your 5 different senses and help you stay awake at work:

    Sight – Visual Stimulation

    The first thing you do when you wake up is opening your eyes, so your visual stimulation is very important to keeping your energy level high.

    1. Maximize your exposure to light.

    Your body’s internal rhythm is regulated by the amount of light you receive. The greater your exposure, the more alert you will feel.

    Open the shades and let in the sunlight. Step outside or look out the window. Turn on all the artificial lights in your office or around your work space.

    2. Exercise your eyes (or give them a break).

    Roll your eyes up and down, side to side and diagonally. Rotate them clockwise and then counterclockwise. Squeeze them shut and then open them wide. Do this several times.

    Reading and sitting in front of a computer screen for long periods can lead to eye fatigue.

    Take regular breaks with deliberate blinking and looking out into the distance.

    3. Take note of your environment.

    Learn to enjoy people-watching. Observe their activities, speech, body language and interactions with others. Notice the details of building, trees and other objects around you, including their color, shape and size.

    By doing this, you’re not only relaxing your eye muscles but also calming your mind.

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    Hearing – Auditory Stimulation

    What you hear or listen to have direct effect on your brain. This is why we feel so annoyed and sometimes angry when we hear construction noise when we’re working.

    4. Engage in conversation.

    Talk to a friend or colleague. Trade funny stories. Discuss your business venture, a creative idea, the latest political scandal, or any other topic that interests you.

    Practice mindful listening to what you and the other person are saying. Tune into the tone, volume and content of the conversation.

    Learn how to practice better listening from this guide:

    Why Listen to Reply Instead of Understand Is the Key to Failure

    5. Listen to upbeat music.

    Try hip hop, rock or jazz to keep you alert. Instrumental, non-distracting music works best.

    Sing, whistle, and hum along if you can. Plug in the earphones if you must.

    Smell – Olfactory Stimulation

    If you’re feeling sleepy and suddenly smell the coffee, you’ll probably feel more energetic. This is why smell is an influential stimulation.

    6. Work your nose.

    Aroma therapists recommend essential oils of peppermint (to boost energy), rosemary (to build awareness), eucalyptus (to increase oxygen), cedarwood  (to activate your mind), and cinnamon (to improve your reaction time).

    If you don’t have essential oils on hand, you can use lotions or burning candles that provide the same scents.

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    Citrus like lemons, limes, grapefruits and oranges are also natural olfactory stimulants. Get a whiff of these citrus scents to stay awake.

    Taste – Gustatory Stimulation

    If you want an energetic day at work, you can’t let your tongue feeling plain and flavorless.

    7. Have a good breakfast.

    Start off with the most important meal of the day.

    Think fresh, light and healthy: bran cereals, wholegrain breads, fruits, and yogurt.

    Nix the heavy stuff like sausages, greasy eggs or pancakes.

    Need some breakfasts inspirations? Check out these ideas:

    20 Healthy Breakfast Choices That Will Save You Time

    8. Drink lots of water.

    Keep a glass or bottle of H2O near you and sip from it throughout the day. Dehydration can leave you feeling tired, sluggish and sleepy.

    So make sure you drink enough water throughout the day. Not sure how much to drink? This can help you:

    How Much Water Should You Drink Each Day (and How Much Is Too Much for You)

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    Think that you’ve been drinking too little water? Try these friendly reminders:

    3 Best Apps To Help You Drink Much More Water

    9. Eat energy-boosting snacks.

    Nuts and fruits (like bananas, apples and strawberries) are sure bets. Pairings with staying power include baby carrots with a low-fat cream cheese dip; celery sticks with peanut butter; red peppers with hummus; and plain yogurt with granola.

    Avoid carb-filled, sugary snacks that make you crash and leave you feeling tired.

    Here you can find some healthy snack ideas:

    25 Healthy Snack Recipes To Make Your Workday More Productive

    Touch – Tactile Stimulation

    Last but not least, your sense of touch will make you physically feel more energetic and less stressful.

    10. Splash cold water on your face.

    Do this in the morning, during bathroom breaks and in the afternoon. Being exposed to cold water pushes your body to adjust and regulate its internal temperature, which in turn keeps you alert.

    This works the same as you take a cold shower to increase mood and alertness. Take a look at this article to learn more about it:

    5 Surprising Benefits of Cold Showers

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    11. Use acupressure.

    Apply pressure to, massage, or tap on the stimulation points of your body. These include the top of your head, the back of your neck, the back of your hand (between the thumb and index finger), just below the knee and your earlobes.

    Watch this video to learn about the acupressure points you can try:

    12. Get moving.

    Move away from your chair and stand, walk, run or climb the stairs. Feel the earth under your feet. Stretch and twist. Do jumping jacks, lunges, push-ups and back bends.

    And if you need to move more discreetly, wiggle your feet, bounce your knee up and down, scrunch your toes, or cross your legs.

    You can also try some simple stretches and exercises at your desk:

    Unlike addictive caffeine fixes, these remedies activate your senses, engage your attention, amp up your energy and prevent morning grogginess and afternoon slumps without the side effects or health risks.

    Pick a few ways from this list of suggestions and practice them consistently. And when you do this consistently, you’ll soon see the positive results — a more energetic and productive you at work.

    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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