What I see: Unfortunately, I see a lot of young men heading down a path that leads to nowhere. Since I’ve already walked through their path, I can understand their mentality at this point, but don’t necessary agree with their motivations or lack thereof. There are too many distractions and not enough time spent on the things that matter. The scary part is, time is passing by and the years will catch up to you faster than you could imagine.
What I see though can be fixed with some diligent effort and focus. Since myself, and many other successful men were able to do it, I know you can too!
My experience: Nearly 10 years ago I graduated from College. I attended one of the hardest Trade Schools for young men in the country. I would recommend it to any young man looking to be successful in the trades. You can find out more about it here.
If there was one thing I remember about this college was that it was tough, really tough. Up at 6am every morning, attended the raising of the flag followed by an inspection of our clothes, shoes and general appearance. We had to work hard every day. And every day, I wanted to quit! I didn’t particularly enjoy making my bed every morning, being stuck 6 hours away from home with no vehicle and living in a place I was not familiar with. But, and this is a big but, I knew that this school could help me become a successful man in life. So every day, I got up and worked hard!
My hope: I don’t share my story to brag or to say my situation was any harder than yours; I share it to offer you some perspective. Perspective is a big tool missing from young men these days. Don’t ever believe that you have it harder than everyone else. Don’t ever think that what you’re facing is unachievable. Some of the most successful people have had to endure multiple hardships on their way to the top. My hope for you is that you will get off your butt and work hard every day to achieve the life you hope to have some day.
Here are 5 areas where I see young men need to improve upon in their life. And since this isn’t a complete list, I encourage you to share your thoughts in the comments below.
Get off the phone – Get into your books
As a man in my early thirties now, I was able to grow up in a time when cell phones were not as “smart”. All we could do was make calls and send texts on them, and that was enough of a distraction in itself. I see young men today on their phones nearly every minute they have available. Is this wrong? No. But it does take away time from things that are of much more importance, like your studies. I would strongly encourage you to realize how much time you spend on your phone or computer and make sure it is not taking away from your learning.
Make Money – Save Money
Let me ask you a simple question, do you know how much you’re paying for college each year and do you realize how much money you are going to owe later? If you have no idea, I would encourage you to be active in this area. Take the time to find out those numbers and then figure out if there’s any way to start making payments on them now. Have you spoken to anyone about scholarships that could be available to you? Again guys, I’m not trying to say that having a part time job or writing essays for scholarships will be easy, but now is the time to push!
Work Hard Now – Find Success Later
This is a simple motto I’d encourage you to think about every day! Maybe post it on the wall in your room or have it come up as a reminder on your phone every day. It’s simple, the harder you work now, the better chance you have at success in the future! Trust me, the last thing you want to do is look in the mirror 4 years from now and realize you wasted a bunch of time and have a lot of debt. Step it up guys! I know you can do it!
Find a Mentor – Listen to Your Mentor
One of the toughest parts of being a young man is realizing that you need help. As I said, now that I’m in my thirties, I feel like I can’t learn enough from people. I realize now that there are plenty of men that have gone before me and have been through the same trials that I am or have gone through. I would strongly encourage you to find a mentor. Find someone who you can just talk to. Find someone that will allow you to open up and just share what’s truly on your mind and heart. And of course, learn the value of listening. How can you apply his or her advice and where can it help you out? Find a mentor, find one soon and maintain the relationship!
Speaking to someone at Church or joining the Man Up App Community would be two great places to start!
Establish Goals Now – Achieve Goals Later
And finally, I would challenge you to consider your goals. Where would you like to be in 5 years? How about 10 years? What would you like to accomplish? How successful do you hope to be? What is it going to take to achieve these goals?
Take the questions above and apply your answers. Establish a set of goals now and achieve your goals later!
Don’t make excuses! Don’t complain about things being too hard! Success doesn’t come to those that sit around, it comes from those that take affirmative action and stick to their goals!
I’d love to hear your thoughts, experiences and challenges on this topic.