Turning 26 years-old

Earlier this, I wrote down brief but important advice for myself. Here's a revised version, as we turn the page to 2024.

  1. Practice good deeds and celebrate success in silence. The point is to do good. Not to elevate your status.
  2. Always assume good intentions and don't take anything personally.
  3. Set clear expectations for what you want out of a relationship. Revisit them as often as possible.
  4. Know when to give something up. The time, money and energy you invested doesn't make it more worthwhile. Keep the concept of sunk costs in mind.
  5. Don't waste time or energy in things you cannot change.
  6. Stand up for what you believe in. Be willing to walk alone if you have to.
  7. Embrace your uniqueness. No one else in the entire world thinks the way you do or has your life experience. And that's your unfair advantage.
  8. Trust yourself and your decisions.
  9. Extreme people get extreme results. Work as hard as you can.
  10. Focus on the things that don't change. The books, technologies, ideas, relationships that are likely to still be here in 50 years.
  11. Prioritise practical experience over books and theory. The shorter the feedback cycle, the better.
  12. Admit your mistakes and shortcomings openly and emphatically. That will make you grow.
  13. Be humble with knowledge. What you know is so much less than what you don't know. And every person knows more about something than you do.
  14. Surround yourself with people who challenge you and help you grow.
  15. Be consistent and practice your craft deliberately but be patient with results. It takes time but sooner or later they'll come. Keep showing up and doing the work.
  16. Reject most labels and boxes. Don't let them define who you are or who you can become.
  17. Cultivate disobedience. In yourself and others. That's how new knowledge is created and how society evolves.
  18. Seek to understand the world. Leave your bubble and travel as often as you can on your own.
  19. Don't try to be perceived as smart. That will keep you from learning and connecting with people genuinely.
  20. Question everything about yourself and about what you believe in. Don't be afraid of changing your mind or seeming inconsistent.

Only you know who you can be