Build a 22-year-old-self You Can Be Proud Of

This is not a normal article in the series #IfIwere22 because I was 22 only a year ago. It is not an advice letter, they are the sincere notes I wrote to myself, I hope you too can resonate with it.

As a 22, I quited my job and come on to pursue a mediocre degree, just to get away from the familiar place where I spent my adolescence. It was last year and felt like yesterday, when I was sitting in the room corner and wondering: What should I do next?

I did not sit there for long nor search for an answer anymore. There is no answer, we should all know that. The uncertainties exist for a reason: to urge us to be aware of the limited time we have and force us to complete what needs to be done.

If there is real magic in this world, I would wish someone had told me about the importance of finding my inner peace, that travelling is not the only way to explore and most notably, I should be quiet more often. Those are the three key things that leads me to my new-found self as now.

1 Be a calm and pleasant person

This has nothing to do with money or relationships. Do not mistake the outer coats with your inner values. You do not have to please anyone because if they do like you, they will like you. It’s important for you to look into your soul and befriend with it. Having a good relationship with people around you does not mean you have to fake a smile, but it’s more about you tell yourself “Hey, be cool. It’s not a big deal”.

2 Travel wisely

Everyone urges you to go travel and “open your mind”, “reach beyond what you can”. No, you don’t have to do that. Travel as you like and discover as you want. It’s fine if you stay at home and look through the computer screen and read about the history instead of dusting your shoes. The ultimate purpose of travelling is packed in one word “experience”, don’t let others’ opinions sabotage your exposures.

But if you really decide to go on travel, choose your companion wisely. It’s simple to pack your bag and go, but it’s not that simple to have the real joy of travelling. Be it your best friend, your mom or even yourself, you have to decide before your trip. Wherever you go, bear in mind that it’s not about the place, it’s all about the people you meet and talk with along the way.

3 Listen, listen and learn

“When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you may learn something new” This saying has a lot to tell: First of all it asks people to stop talking; Secondly it tells you that listening alone is not enough, you gotta learn. Listening makes you a better person and learning makes you a different person. It’s the change that matters.

Being a 22-year-old means you have to be bold and be brave in whatever you do. It also includes the commitment of continuous learning to be a better person. There’s not an ultimate guide to do that, you just have to believe in yourself and climb the next step.

P/s: Just a piece of good news: as a recent graduate, you are graduating into the best job climate in over a decade. So, be happy 😉