A few months ago, I ushered my twins into the world of adulthood. As they blew out their birthday candles and make their prospective wishes, I got to reminiscing about what the age of 18 felt like for me. It was different back then (we were still perfecting the wheel and all), but in so many ways it was exactly the same. I thought I knew it all, I assumed I was a world-class expert on everything — not much has changed in that department — and I was convinced that the world was my oyster. Yet, time has been a fickle bedfellow. For me, it was full of twists, turns and few faux pas that could have been prevented by a time machine — circa Marty McFly. All the same, there are 30 things I would have given my left knuckle to have known back then; things that I hope I have imparted to my offspring.
No. 1: You don’t know it all, and you never will.
No. 2: Life gets harder, but it also gets more rewarding.
No. 3: High school really doesn’t ever end.
No. 4: Seize every opportunity that crosses your path.
No. 5: Always work your hardest.
No. 6: Never look back.
No. 7: Look forward to every tomorrow.
No. 8: Your diploma doesn’t define you, your heart does that.
No. 9: Your mom was right about a lot more than you gave her credit for.
No. 10: Never be embarrassed for saying what’s on your mind.
No. 11: Make mistakes and apologize for them. It shows that your heart is bigger than your ego.
No. 12: Fall in love as much as you can with the right people, and even a few wrong ones.
No. 13: Guard your heart, it is your most treasured possession.
No. 14: Never trust anyone too much.
No. 15: Don’t let the cynics sneak in too far and make a home in your soul.
No. 16: Never let your heart be hardened by pain.
No. 17: Do everything with passion, and know that it has its own reward.
No. 18: Explore, invent and reinvent yourself often.
No. 19: Be daring.
No. 20: Be bold.
No. 21: Be your best you, always.
No. 22: Say “yes” more.
No. 23: Do something drastic.
No. 24: Breathe.
No. 25: Lean on those that love you, those who don’t will only let you fall.
No. 26: Eat chocolate.
No. 27: Cry when your heart hurts.
No. 28: Never forget who you are, but always improve.
No. 29: Learn something new every day.
No. 30: Never become stagnant. Ever.
What crucial wisdom would you share with your fledgling adult?
More from this contributor:
Parenting Guru: 5 minutes to a happier child
Parenting Guru: I nominate my daughters
Parenting Guru: 3 tips for fashionable, busy moms