6 Things We Wish We'd Learn at 20

In this podcast, we discuss six things we wish we had learned at 20. We advise trying new things, not being afraid to fail, building habits, starting a family early, following your dreams, and surrounding yourself with positive people. We also share some minimal news and personal updates.
Jerzy Rajkow, Gosia Rajkow 4 min read
6 Things We Wish We'd Learn at 20

Today, we'll be discussing our unique lives and sharing six things we wish we had learned at 20. As individuals over 40 years old, we believe it's important to pass on our wisdom to our younger selves. Gosia will share her six ideas, followed by mine.

But first, let's discuss some minimal news. Have you heard anything interesting lately? We haven't been keeping up with social media or news outlets. However, we did hear about Substack Notes, a new Twitter clone introduced by Substack. It's a great way for small substacks like ours to promote our content to interested readers. Unfortunately, Elon Musk was upset about this and blocked all links leading from Twitter to Substack. Do you think CEOs should act emotionally?

While it's understandable, they should have counselors to advise them against rash decisions. On a personal note, our children were sick recently, and we stumbled upon a blog post that stated kids are likely to be sick from ages 3 to 7 if they attend preschool and school. Parenting can feel like being sick nonstop for five years.

Additionally, we're two and a half months away from vacation and currently planning our holiday. We'll share more details once we have solid plans.

Great, let's dive into our podcast's core topic: six things we wish we had learned at 20. Gosia, what's the first piece of advice you'd give your younger self?

Gosia's #1

Trying new things! It's a fantastic way to discover what you like and don't like. For example, try working in different places to find out what kind of work suits you best. And don't forget to experiment with different lifestyles too. Personally, I've always dreamed of being a digital nomad or living in a remote countryside and making cheese. What about you?

Jerzy's #1

My number one advice would be: you'll be fine, no matter what happens. It's important to remember that most of what we imagine never actually happens, and life goes on. So don't worry too much about the consequences of your actions. Gosia, what's your second piece of advice?

Motivational sign in the window of a boxing gym.
Photo by the blowup / Unsplash

Gosia's #2

Don't be afraid to fail! Fear of failure can hold you back from achieving success. Speaking of which, what does success mean to you? For me, it's personal fulfillment, not just money.

Jerzy's #2

My second piece of advice is to build habits and run every day. I regret not starting earlier in life. Running helps me clear my mind and focus on my goals. Building habits around fitness or sports is crucial for peace of mind and looking good. Do you like running, Gosia?

Gosia's #3 (and Jerzy's #4)

Moving on to our third piece of advice: don't be afraid to start a family early. Having children changes your perspective on life and gives you a tangible goal. It also makes you less stressed about everything else. Plus, having kids motivates you to be more efficient with your time. If you want a big family, start early.

Jerzy's #3

Money is not the most important thing in life, time is. As a young person, I believed that having a lot of money would solve all my problems, but as I got older, I realized that time is a precious commodity that cannot be bought. Having children made me value time even more, and I believe that the idea of buying time with wealth is a fallacy. It's important to stay connected to your life and goals, rather than relying on others to manage it for you.While money is necessary to live well, the amount needed varies depending on individual circumstances. For example, living in a rural area as a farmer requires less money than living in a big city like New York or San Francisco.

Photo by Greg Rakozy / Unsplash

Gosia's #4

Gosia's fourth piece of advice is to follow your dreams and not rationalize them away. It's easy to think that living off your hobbies is impossible, but have you ever tried? It's important to experiment and see what works for you. However, I don't believe in the flawed advice of following your passion. Instead, follow your dreams and try them out to see if they're a good fit.

Gosia's #5

Surround yourself with positive people who support your goals. Negative people can hold you back and drain your energy. It's important to have a supportive network that encourages you to be your best self. Meeting people and building relationships is crucial for personal growth and safety. A network of people who care about you is more valuable than any amount of money. It's important to assess whether the people you meet resonate with your values and energy.

Lung’Arno sul ponte della carraia, firenze.
Photo by Matteo Vistocco / Unsplash

Jerzy's #5

Iterating rapidly, closing projects ruthlessly, and changing teams often is key to success. Don't delay decisions about who to work with, and don't be afraid to cut ties with those who are blocking your progress.

Gosia's #6

Speaking publicly about what you care about and sharing your knowledge can make a difference in your community. Don't underestimate the power of your ideas and experiences.

Jerzy's #6

Shipping fast is a cure for perfectionism. Don't wait until you feel ready to show your work to the world. Set deadlines and show your work, even if you think it's not perfect. Let others give feedback and improve from there.If you have any ideas or advice for us, please share them in the comments!

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