[20 Harsh Truths]


What advice would you give your 20-year-old self?

Here are 20 harsh truths I wish I had known:


  1. Your loved ones are aging, and you’ll never get as much time with them as you had in your first 20 years. Make each moment count.

  2. The person you will be in 10 years is a direct result of the books you read, conversations you have, and habits you build right now. Choose wisely.

  3. Comparison is the thief of joy. The only person you can compare yourself to is who you were yesterday.

  4. You don’t get what you “deserve.” You get what you negotiate. If what you’re asking for doesn’t make you feel uncomfortable, it’s not high enough.

  5. If you stay at a company for a few years, there’s really only one time that you get to negotiate your salary: the first day you join.

  6. In order to date someone remarkable, you need to be remarkable yourself.

  7. Your phone is your #1 distraction, and it will probably hold you back from achieving your goals. Put it in Do Not Disturb mode for 2 hours every day.

  8. Travel. You’ll never have as few responsibilities as you do right now. Take at least 3 epic trips that you’ll tell people about at dinner parties for the rest of your life.

  9. At some point, you will have to deal with something painful. It will change your life. You can’t choose what happens— but you get to decide how you react to it.

  10. There’s a reason why older people always tell you to put sunscreen on.

  11. When choosing a career path, look at who’s at the top of the ladder. Make sure that’s the lifestyle you want.

  12. The way you treat your body now will determine your injuries, medical bills, and energy levels in your 30s+.

  13. Feel your feelings. Never sweep them under the rug. If you don’t validate them, they’ll come back and make a much bigger mess later.

  14. Most people stop learning after university. Don’t be most people. Always be reading a good book.

  15. Stop waiting for the “right time.” You’ll never feel fully prepared. Start now— you’ll be so glad that you did.

  16. You are the average of the 5 friends you spend the most time with. If they’re not who you hope to be like, find the friends who are.

  17. Healthy relationships are made up of two individual people with their own hobbies, goals, friend groups, and passions.

  18. Only invest in the people who invest in you. If you give away too much time, attention, or energy… it will be taken for granted.

  19. Don’t limit yourself to what you’ve always been good at. There’s an entire world of possibility out there.

  20. If you’re not “failing” at least once a month, you’re not pushing yourself hard enough to reach your wildest dreams.


What else would you add to this list? I’d love to hear your advice to your 20-year-old self.



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