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5 Mistakes You Can Afford To Make When You’re Young

5 Mistakes You Can Afford To Make When You’re Young

Being young is great. Most of the parts of your body still work great, you have a full head of hair, you’re energetic, and you have a world of opportunity in front of you. However, there’s going to come a time when you start to get older. And as you get older, you’ll have new responsibilities, complete independence, and perhaps most importantly, less time to recover from mistakes.

You see, we all make mistakes in life. Maybe you spent more money than you should have on a car, you passed up on a great job opportunity, or you didn’t try as hard as you could have in school. It’s a part of life and we learn from it. But there are certain mistakes that are much better made while you’re still young and have plenty of time to recover.

I’m definitely not telling you that you should purposely go out and make these mistakes (because they’re a pain to recover from). But these are all mistakes that are much better made when you’re younger so that you can learn from them and not have them ruin your entire life.

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Starting The Wrong Career

Wouldn’t you hate to be 45 years old and discover that you absolutely hate what you do for a living? It’s a reality that a lot of people face and it can be difficult to fix. You see, when you’re 23 and find out you don’t like the career path you’ve chosen, you can easily explore new career options.

We no longer live in an age when people are expected to stay with one company until they retire. You can bounce around a little bit and find out what you want to do. When you get older, just switching careers whenever you want isn’t as simple.

You have to consider your family, retirement, the difficulties you might run into with starting from the bottom in a new industry, and plenty of other issues that someone in their early 20’s just doesn’t have to deal with.

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Dating the wrong person

The divorce rate in the U.S is extremely high. Other parts of the world aren’t doing too much better either. While everyone gets divorced for their own reasons, I think we can all agree that it’s better to find out that the person you’re with is wrong for you sooner rather than later.

Hopefully you find out whether or not the person you’re with is right for you before you tie the knot, because around 50% of first marriages end in divorce.

Messing up your credit

Ruining your credit is never a good idea. Even if you ruin it while you’re young, it could affect you in the future. The upside of having bad credit while you’re young instead of older is that you have time to build it back up.

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It can take 7-10 years to rebuild your credit if you have a history of late payments, loan defaults, foreclosures, or bankruptcy. During those 7-10 years, you’ll have a hard time financing anything unless you have a cosigner or put down a substantial down payment.

Most people tend to make most of the bigger purchases in life when they get older such as a house or their dream car. If you have bad credit, you can kiss all of that goodbye.

Making bad investments

If you’re investing money for your retirement, making bad decisions can mean you’ll be working your entire life. Whether you choose to pay someone to do the investing for you or handle it all yourself, it’s a lot better to take risks when you’re younger.

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If you invest in stock or even real estate while you’re young and the market takes a hit, you’re not ruined. Investing is a long-term venture, so the younger you start, the more fluctuation you can withstand and still come out with a positive return.

Blowing your money

What would you do if you went broke at 60 years old? You would be working your behind off when you really should be relaxing and getting ready to retire soon.

But if you’re 25 and broke, you still have plenty of time to earn more money. Also, nobody will judge you because it’s not unusual for people in their 20’s to not have money these days. You might have blown your money on a nice car or have an obsession with all the newest gadgets.

When you get older, you’ll be able to look back and realize how dumb you were for spending $20,000 on a brand new car when you were only 20 years old. But when you’re older and waste your money, you’ll REALLY have nothing to show for it.

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Last Updated on April 8, 2020

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Assuming positive intent is an important contributor to quality of life.

Most people appreciate the dividends such a mindset produces in the realm of relationships. How can relationships flourish when you don’t assume intentions that may or may not be there? And how their partner can become an easier person to be around as a result of such a shift? Less appreciated in the GTD world, however, is the productivity aspect of this “assume positive intent” perspective.

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Most of us are guilty of letting our minds get distracted, our energy sapped, or our harmony compromised by thinking about what others woulda, coulda, shoulda.  How we got wronged by someone else.  How a friend could have been more respectful.  How a family member could have been less selfish.

However, once we evolve to understanding the folly of this mindset, we feel freer and we become more productive professionally due to the minimization of unhelpful, distracting thoughts.

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The leap happens when we realize two things:

  1. The self serving benefit from giving others the benefit of the doubt.
  2. The logic inherent in the assumption that others either have many things going on in their lives paving the way for misunderstandings.

Needless to say, this mindset does not mean that we ought to not confront people that are creating havoc in our world.  There are times when we need to call someone out for inflicting harm in our personal lives or the lives of others.

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Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO of Pepsi, says it best in an interview with Fortune magazine:

My father was an absolutely wonderful human being. From ecent emailhim I learned to always assume positive intent. Whatever anybody says or does, assume positive intent. You will be amazed at how your whole approach to a person or problem becomes very different. When you assume negative intent, you’re angry. If you take away that anger and assume positive intent, you will be amazed. Your emotional quotient goes up because you are no longer almost random in your response. You don’t get defensive. You don’t scream. You are trying to understand and listen because at your basic core you are saying, ‘Maybe they are saying something to me that I’m not hearing.’ So ‘assume positive intent’ has been a huge piece of advice for me.

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In business, sometimes in the heat of the moment, people say things. You can either misconstrue what they’re saying and assume they are trying to put you down, or you can say, ‘Wait a minute. Let me really get behind what they are saying to understand whether they’re reacting because they’re hurt, upset, confused, or they don’t understand what it is I’ve asked them to do.’ If you react from a negative perspective – because you didn’t like the way they reacted – then it just becomes two negatives fighting each other. But when you assume positive intent, I think often what happens is the other person says, ‘Hey, wait a minute, maybe I’m wrong in reacting the way I do because this person is really making an effort.

“Assume positive intent” is definitely a top quality of life’s best practice among the people I have met so far. The reasons are obvious. It will make you feel better, your relationships will thrive and it’s an approach more greatly aligned with reality.  But less understood is how such a shift in mindset brings your professional game to a different level.

Not only does such a shift make you more likable to your colleagues, but it also unleashes your talents further through a more focused, less distracted mind.

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Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

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