Saturday, September 26, 2015

Advice To Myself Thirty Years Ago

If I could build a time machine and go back to college... what would I suggest to the me of the past?

This question has been on my mind lately as I watch my oldest daughter navigate her journey as a college freshman.  She is doing great and is better qualified for the real world than I was at her age.  Yet I so wish I could consistently give her advice each day, but I know it is best to let her navigate her own path.

Imagining there was a method to communicate with the me of 1984, as in Brad Paisley's song "Letter to Me", what suggestions would I share to myself?

Five Tips I Wish I Could Give To Myself 30 Years Ago

1.  Don't worry so much about what others think.  No matter what is going on in your life, the reality is people are not paying nearly as much attention as you think.  Even the people closest to you are not judging you.  Your friends care about you and the rest of the people do not care.

2.  Think bigger about everything.  The world is really your oyster and there are so many opportunities to create an awesome future.  But do not sell yourself short, you have more potential than you understand at this point.  Don't wait until you are nearly 50 years old to realize the mark you can make on the world.

3. Take more risks.  Go for it... no matter what "it" is.  Your youth is the perfect time to take chances, and it will only get harder to embrace the scary stuff when you get older.

3.5 Bounce back from failure.  If you try for things, sometimes you will not get what you wanted.  That is okay.  You will get other things.  Take some time to feel bad, and quickly move on to your next adventure.  There is a Japanese proverb that says "Fall down seven times, get up eight".

4.  Cherish the people around you.  Older relatives and mentors will be gone from this earth sooner than you think, and your peers will go their own direction in pursuit of their dreams.  Let the people around you know they matter all along the way.

5.  Save 10% of your income from the beginning.  You will hear this advice many times in your life, but you wont do it.  All I can say is you will later wish you had been smarter with your money.  

6.  Always give a little more than you promised.  Over deliver in every interaction you have with people.  Tell them five and give them six.  It matters.

While I cannot go back and teach these lessons to myself, maybe one person will read this advice and take them to heart.  How cool if this blog post could impact one younger person.

Have A Great Day

thom singer

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Great insight, Thom.

-Tim Haggerty