What is something every teenager should know about ‘the real world’?”
If you are an adult and reading this, you can add your 2 cents in the comments. If you are a teen, study this post, because the adults of of the world are schooling you on social media, and they are smart. Read on….
You Will Need Money
This might seem obvious, but a lot of teenagers are not taught how to make money, save money – and how much living actually costs.
“SAVE MONEY. Be Nice. Work Hard. SAVE MONEY. Did I mention SAVE MONEY?”
“Learn how to manage money. Too many young people get deep into debt because they don’t know how to save or how credit cards actually work. Remember that there is an order of where your money goes: Rent and bills must come first and foremost, then everything else.”
“Be careful lending money. It is better to give money than to lend it, expect to be paid back, and never get paid back. And this happens more than you might think.”
“When I was a teenager and was angry with my parents for something or other I threatened to move out. My dad said that he would help me pack and that I had better be prepared because tomorrow morning when I woke up and wanted to have my bowl of cereal and orange juice that I had better go out tonight and buy the refrigerator to keep the orange juice and milk in, and you better buy a bowl and a spoon, and had better buy the cereal and orange juice. Oh yeah, and you had better find a bed and some blankets and a roof over your head, and also call the electric company and ask them to install electricity in your new apartment. Oh yeah, and how are you going to get to the grocery store and to your new apartment??? You need to go and buy a car and get some license plates for it and get it insured. Oh yeah, you need some money to fill the gas tank up before you can even drive it. I shut up pretty quickly and changed my mind.”
More On Money
Basically, if you are young, know that money is going to loom large in your life and you better know how to manage it.
“Everything is expensive when you move out.”
“Yes. And nothing is free. You always pay in some way or another, both private and work life.”
“Once I asked a consultant an easy yes or no question (since he was already on site and stood in front of me). He sent me an invoice for it.”
“Moving out made me quickly realize that all the stuff in my parent’s house took a LOOOONG TIME to accumulate lol.”
Dr. House’s Words of Wisdom: Adults Lie
When you were a little kid and your Mom asked you if you ate all the cookies, as you are both standing in front of the empty box she found behind the couch – a lot of you probably said “no”. And we didn’t even know it was a lie. It just felt like the smart thing to do at the time. Well, guess what? Adults lie, too, and usually more than cookies are at stake.
“PEOPLE LIE. Just because they’re an adult doesn’t mean they always tell the truth.”
“Just because someone was the president of the US, they can still lie to you.”
“80% of people are honest. Don’t blame yourself for trusting the 20% that do lie. Even professionals that need to determine when someone is lying are bad at it.”
“I personally think the Pareto principle holds here: 80% of people generally tell the truth, but the 20% that frequently lie cause 80% of the problems.”
“Everybody lies. -Dr. Gregory House nearly every episode.”
You Know Yourself Better Than Anyone
As a kid, or young adult, you might think you know everything, or you might feel like you are floundering. Learning to be in touch with your instincts is a good life skill.
“Trust your gut, if you have a bad feeling about somebody, don’t disregard that feeling. Even if they are nice to you but your gut says something is off. Move with caution.”
Time Passes More Quickly Than You Could Ever Imagine
There was a lot of discussion about time, but all the adults agreed that it goes by way faster than they ever would (or could) have imagined when they were younger.
“Time slides by a lot faster than you expect. Do. Not. Waste. It. People you think you’ll see again, for sure, pass away. Car accidents Heart attacks. Torn esophagus…I mean, at any. given. moment. I hope even one of you reads this, and takes a new level of appreciation. Tell the people you love, that you love them. Seize the freaking day.”
“Old guy here, or at least old relative to social media. I have lost both parents. Over a dozen friends. Time creeps. You don’t think, even for a second, this is the last time I’ll see these people. We take for granted, so much. If you look back, and knew that those were the best years and the best times of your life, would you have appreciated it differently?”
“When we are younger, our perception of time is very different. We think we have all the time in the world. Our life is often filled with, ‘I’ll get to that later,’ or ‘I have plenty of time.’ Let me tell you, we don’t have nearly as much as we think. Time slides by ridiculously fast as you age. I mean that.”
This guy’s dad is a cowboy, and he has a clear perception of time:
“I once described a similar thing to my cowboy dad. He sat quietly and let me speak. I said things like “Kindergarten felt like it took 3 years.” And “my senior year in high school felt like 3 months.”
My Old man patiently listening to his 25 year old son, and let me finish expressing my thoughts. Then he finally says loudly ‘WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU TELLING ME FOR? I WAS YOUR AGE A HALF HOUR AGO!’
I adore that man!”
Advice On Friendship
Having friends is important, but do you need many? And how do you retain the one’s you have?
“Friendships take maintenance.”
“Gotta be a friend to have a friend!”
“When I hit my own rock bottom earlier this year – unemployed for 14 months, $15K credit card debt as a result, no more money for rent, etc. – my friends collectively pulled together about $2,700 to help me move back home so at least I’d have a roof over my head. I still am eternally grateful for their kindness, and intend to pay them back once I’m fully employed. Don’t discount close friends who truly love and look out for each other and would bend over backwards to help out.”
“You get what you give. The giving comes first.”
You, Your Feelings & The Universe
As kids we tend to feel things immensely. The smallest things feel huge; like not getting to have an ice cream cone. Then we become adults and we have to grapple with the knowledge that not everything we feel is all that important.
“The real world doesn’t care about your feelings.”
“People tend to do what’s necessary for them in the moment without thinking much about others besides who are directly next to them. So yes, trust people less.”
“Don’t worry about not having the respect of people you don’t respect.”
“This is a good one, I’d like to add don’t take criticism from people you wouldn’t ask for advice’.”
“Your job sees you as replaceable. Look out for yourself and your family. Your job is not everything, but it will feel like it is. Make sure that if you don’t like where you are that you change it. Don’t be miserable at a job because it pays well.”
“Amen. Jobs are just that… jobs. You need them to eat, and have a car etc. they aren’t your life and no one will remember you after you move on from the job. Eventually they’ll forget who you were. So, take time for family, screw the stupid after work dinners and all that crap. Family matters more.”
“Life is extremely unfair. And there is no reason for that. People who have expectations of things being fair in the real world are always sorely disappointed.”
What It Feels Like To Be an Adult
What does it feel like to be an adult? When you are a kid, you think you are going to be totally in charge, right?
“99% of the people you see who look like they have their stuff together…Don’t.”
“In fact, most adults still feel like teenagers themselves and just do the best they can. None of us have all the answers and precious few of us have even figured out our own lives.”
“We all make it up as we go. So don’t get discouraged when you’re pushing 30-40 and feel the same. It’s normal.”
Taking Care of Parents
There was quite a lot of discussion around feeling like one needs to stay near their parents to take care of them. Most mid-life adults posting seems to feel that way. The older parents, however, did not agree.
“Our parents are very precious resources to us, that we can’t replace, but you also have to reconcile their positions/conditions with your own goals and circumstances. You can help them, and be there for them, but you can’t forgo your dreams and goals, that will only cause resentment.”
“I did some thinking and realized that with my sister overseas, and my parents fast-approaching 70, I may only see everyone together less than ten more times given the average life expectancy. This alone deeply upset me. No way am I ready for that.”
“70 yo mom here. Move! I wish one or all of my kids had moved. (Four children). Parents want the best for their kids, health, relationships, safety and adventure. Go where you find it. Your mom is a plane ride away if necessary. Most of us did not have kids because we expected them to be at our beckoned call. Live your life.”
Confidence vs. Competence
There was a lively discussion about confidence (real or faked), actual competence, and which opens more doors in life.
“For better or for worse, confidence opens as many doors as competence.”
“I’m a teacher and this belief has screwed over a lot of kids. They think they can confidence their way through life.”
“I have yet to meet an overconfident incompetent student succeed in life. Competence builds confidence.”
“Teenage confidence is so different from adult confidence though. Teenage confidence is often unfounded, undeserved, and/or shaky — more cockiness than confidence.”
We End With Some One Liners
“Carpe all them diems.”
“Do. Not. Waste. It.”
“No life plan survives contact with the real world. We’re all basically just winging it.”
“Everyone is different, so there are no real, one size fits all answers.”
“It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness. That is life. — Captain Jean-Luc Picard.”
“You can be the most delicious peach on a tree, but not everybody likes peaches.”
“Comparison is the thief of joy.”
“Enjoy your youth till 16, because after that kid, the gloves come off.”
“You ain’t seen nothing yet.”
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