17 Life Lessons You’d Tell Your Younger Self

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There are a lot of life lessons you wish you can share with your younger self. Here’s a list of some of them and how they can help you become one percent better every day.

RELATED: How To Better Yourself: 8 Practical Tips

In this article:

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  1. Surround Yourself with People and Things that Matter
  2. Steer Away from Perfectionism
  3. Follow the “Google Rule”
  4. Don’t Argue Over Small Things
  5. Fuel Your Creative Juices
  6. Develop New Skills
  7. Create Your Own Happiness
  8. Learn from Others
  9. Treat Everyone Like Your Own Daughter
  10. Work Smart to Make Money
  11. Be the Dumbest Person in the Room
  12. Avoid Reading Unimportant News Stories
  13. Be the Master of Your Own Body
  14. Maintain Your Sense of Dignity
  15. Ask “What If” Only to Explore
  16. Learn How to Connect With People
  17. Follow the 1% Rule Every Day

Valuable Life Lessons You Wish You’d Known About Earlier

1. Surround Yourself with People and Things that Matter

They say that you’re the average of the five people you’re always with. Moreover, you’re also the combination of your top five habits, thoughts, food, and literature.

This is why it’s essential to ensure your environment and interactions are the most optimal for personal growth.

2. Steer Away from Perfectionism

Beautiful young african american woman smiling and looking up | Life Lessons You'd Tell Your Younger Self | when we are young
Perfectionism is where your creative juices will evaporate. Always remember to accept that, when you find something you love doing, you won’t automatically be good at it.

As time goes by, you’ll realize there are many things you don’t really know how to do, and it’ll be easier to get over that.

Always remember to show empathy to yourself and be confident. There’s always a learning curve everyone needs to overcome.

3. Follow the “Google Rule”

Following the “Google Rule” can add value to your life every day. Google doesn’t really know anything, but it’s worth a lot because of two things:

  • It may not have the information itself, but it can point us to the information we need.
  • It credits people for providing such information. Instead of bragging they know something, they tell you about those who do know something and lead you to them.

4. Don’t Argue Over Small Things

One of the valuable life lessons you should learn in life over time is to not sweat the small things.

You can spend so much time arguing with a friend about politics, but years from now, it won’t even matter anymore.

Instead, focus on topics and principles you can carry over time in your life journey. Instead of arguing with others, which won’t really have an effect on your life in the long-run find that space where you can discover who you really are, what really matters, and where you belong in the world.

5. Fuel Your Creative Juices

Exercise the mind’s creative muscles. Remember, creativity is like a muscle –it can only grow and strengthen if it’s always used.

Every day, write down 10 ideas. As days go by, you’ll notice that your brain will get used to the exercise and it’ll be easier for you to figure out where you should really be.

6. Develop New Skills

Man with beard, working at home on some project | Life Lessons You'd Tell Your Younger Self | what i wish i knew when i was 20
To achieve a meaningful life, you need to diversify your skills. Discover the things that leave you in awe, then from there, diversify your abilities.

Here’s how to capitalize on the things that give you awe and improve yourself from them:

  • Read books that pique your interest.
  • Write down 10 ideas every day.
  • Look for a skill you can earn money from, then develop it.
  • Develop soft skills, like writing, that you can still use later on.

Over time, keep up and update your skills so you won’t get left behind.

7. Create Your Own Happiness

One of the most important life lessons you have to learn is to not depend on other people for your happiness. If you keep outsourcing your self-esteem, you’ll never be happy.

When your happiness depends on other people, you’ll always feel the need to work harder to make them happy. You’ll end up basing your own happiness on whether they’re happy or not.

You’ll run around trying to please everyone, from your boss to your friends, thinking that a promotion or their validation will make you happy.

But don’t forget that people also look out for #1. You deserve to choose yourself too.

8. Learn from Others

Valuable life lessons can be learned in different ways, in different places, and especially in different interactions.

  • Have a mentor, either a person you look up to or books. They can help you learn new things and discover what kind of person you aspire to be.
  • People who are in the same boat as you can also be a good resource to track your progress.
  • Those who know less or are younger than you can also help you learn. Teaching what you do can also become valuable for your learning.

RELATED: 3 Ways Self Improvement Can Change Your Life and How To Do It

9. Treat Everyone Like Your Own Daughter

Everyone is in the same boat — we’re all going through the motions of life and experiencing less than ideal situations every day.

Thus, it’s important to practice compassion and empathy. One easy way to do this is by treating everyone like they’re your daughter.

Try to love their flaws without trying to change their personalities. Be sensitive to their needs, and don’t control them.

10. Work Smart to Make Money

Successful businessman very excited in front of an office building | Life Lessons You'd Tell Your Younger Self | i wish i knew then what i know now
Realizing the real value of money is one of the most important life lessons anyone could learn.

Money isn’t about gaining more income or pleasing other people. It’s also not about investing a lot or living a large life in luxury.

Instead, it’s about seeing value in things and places others don’t. Money is also about having enough time to do all the things you want to do — it buys time.

Learning about the value of money can teach you what you need to do so it doesn’t control you.

11. Be the Dumbest Person in the Room

Rather than seeing yourself as the most intelligent person in the room, try switching it up. See yourself as the person who knows the least about something.

By doing this, you acknowledge that others are better. Observe what they’re doing and take this as an opportunity to absorb everyone’s wisdom and influence.

Later on, you can combine everything you’ve learned and use them to guide how you live your life.

12. Avoid Reading Unimportant News Stories

Reading news stories that don’t really have any impact on your life. Instead, you can read great books.

By reading these books, you’re learning from the author’s expertise. You can absorb the knowledge and wisdom they put into writing the book.

These are things that have a lasting impact on your personal growth, and inspire you towards a meaningful life.

13. Be the Master of Your Own Body

Be the master of your own body.

It’s perfectly okay to want to have an impact on the world, but before you can leave a lasting impact on others, you must first learn how to master your own thoughts, actions, and emotions.

At the end of the day, you can’t save the world if you don’t work on your yourself first.

14. Maintain Your Sense of Dignity

Handshake of business partners after a favorable trade deal | Life Lessons You'd Tell Your Younger Self | things i wish i knew before
Having dignity means being the kind of person people can trust and rely on.

One of the life lessons you can apply on a daily basis is to practice living with dignity and with a purpose. So, avoid gossip, help others, and take good care of yourself.

Through this, you can stand firm and earn your dignity.

15. Ask “What If” Only to Explore

Asking “what if” forces you to think about other possibilities and opportunities you can explore. It can serve as a link between “what is” to “what could be.”

If you ended up in a bank instead of pursuing your love for cooking, ask yourself – what if I take short courses now?

16. Learn How to Connect With People

Another example of the life lessons we can apply on a regular basis is creating authentic connections with people.

Do not be afraid to connect and be vulnerable. It is through vulnerability that you learn how to be open and build a meaningful relationship with another person.

One great quality of the citizens living in the “blue zones”, or countries with people beyond 100 years old is that they spend time for their relationships. They also value their connections to co-workers and families.

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As a result, their bodies have reduced inflammation and they live long healthy lives.

17. Follow the 1% Rule Every Day

Another example of the important life lessons you realize as years go by is to constantly improve yourself, every day.

Each day, do something that will improve your skills and talents. This may be just 1% progress per day, but having just 1% progress every day will be 3,800% progress when compounded for an entire year.

This means that by taking baby steps every day, you can eventually become the best in all the things that give you awe.

Unfortunately, the same compounding happens for the opposite — you can also lose 1% every day. This happens when you focus on unimportant things, such as arguments with negative people.

When you lose 1% every day for a year, you’ll only be 3% of the person who you were at the beginning of the year.

You might say to yourself, “I wish I knew what I know now when I was younger.”

It’s okay to have some regrets when you look back at the past. Just remember, your past mistakes are the ones that have led you to the life you have now.

Hopefully, these 17 life lessons will guide you through the present, so you can achieve your maximum potential in life in the future.

What are the life lessons you wish you can tell your younger self? Share your thoughts below.

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