20 Things You Should Know at 20 to Become Successful

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American writer and business coach Julian Smith gave practical advice to young people how to navigate in this world. In order to be successful and wealthy with age, you need to adhere to certain rules already when you are 20 and have a clear idea about some of the realities of the contemporary world.

  1. The world is trying to leave you dumb. Starting from bank charges and interest and ending with miracle diets. It is easier to get money from uneducated people, as they are easier to manipulate. Educate yourself as much as you can to be rich, independent, and happy.
  2. Do not have faith in educational institutions. While they are preparing the curriculum, the system gets outdated, and sometimes manages to break down. It is best to learn and earn people’s respect by leadership and by doing, not by following.
  3. Read as much as you can. Master the technique of rapid reading with a high level of retention. You may well read one book a week.
  4. Always try to communicate with everyone. Become a master of communication. Learn how to find something that you like in a person, and then refer to this side of him or her.
  5. Do not waste time on modesty. Modesty is a belief that your emotions can be the judges of your decision-making process, while the opposite is actually true.
  6. If you are unpleasantly surprised by something in a relationship, it is likely to become the reason for a break-up.
  7. Try to communicate with people who are older than you as often as possible. The value of communication with the senior is in the fact that your peers’ decision-making system is not much of help to you. A senior knows what you’ll learn later – that’s why it is worth asking them.
  8. Look for people cooler than yourself [in that what appeals to you], and spend time with them. This is important in itself. Do not try to be mediocre in your group, try to be the best (do interesting things, be ambitious, responsive, receptive).
  9. You will become more conservative over time. It’s just a fact. Those around you will create something like a bubble, which will maintain the “status quo”. That’s why NOW is the best time for crazy ideas. Then you will be too fearful.
  10. Reduce expenses as much as possible. This allows you to create a reserve for those crazy ideas mentioned above.
  11. Instead of obtaining the status through objects (which makes it only a temporary increase), do it through experience. In other words, a trip to Paris is a better choice than a new wardrobe. Studies show that this choice increases the level of satisfaction with life.
  12. If you live in poverty, solve the money problem. Use the Internet, because it can help you buy something cheap at auction. If you are currently living from paycheck to paycheck, extend this period for three weeks instead of two. Then, when things get better, you can plan for a month, then for three, six and finally up to a year ahead. The purpose is to reach the point when you will be able to plan 5 years ahead.
  13. Learn to program. This develops logics, memory and imagination.
  14. Keep fit when you are young. Your hormones can help you with this at first, but do not lose this opportunity.
  15. Learn to cook. This will greatly simplify your life, nutrition will cease to be commonplace; it will turn from an expensive need to a pleasant experience and will save you money.
  16. Get enough sleep. Sleep and self-cooking will help maintain weight. If you think you will sleep when you are dead or you have a lot to do, so there is no time for sleep, just know that you are NOT EFFECTIVE when you don’t get enough sleep. Sleep deprivation will not help you.
  17. Get a reminder app. Do not trust your memory. Do not do what you feel like doing. Trust only records.
  18. Set a big goal and allow the opportunity to help you. If you do not set it, something will certainly happen, but if you do, a lot more will.
  19. Become an expert in one thing. Spend 5 years doing it rather than beating around the bush. If you want to change your profession – go ahead. But choose something.
  20. Do not try to fix people. It is better to find those who are not broken.