I like to start every new year with a new attitude and new energy. I'm pleased to announce that, so far, here on the 3rd day of January, I am still in that mode.
As I chatted with my daughter last night, discussing which teenage necessities (car, gas, insurance, cell phone, spending money, work/school clothes) Dad was willing to provide, and which ones she will need to earn on her own, it struck me that she needed a bit of a reality check. I don't think the timing could be better with a fresh year starting, so I modified an old list of rules I found on my hard drive. This should provide her a starting point.
Life is not fair - quickly familiarize yourself with that concept.
It's important to have confidence and feel good about yourself - but the world won’t care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.
You will NOT make 40 thousand dollars a year right out of high school. You won’t be a vice president with a corner office until you earn both.
If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss. They don’t have tenure.
Flipping burgers or mopping floors is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for it - opportunity.
If you mess up, it’s not your parents’ fault. Don’t dwell on, or whine about, your mistakes... learn from them.
Before you were born, your parents weren’t as boring as they are now. Part of how they got that way was from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you are. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent’s generation, try delousing the closet in your bedroom.
Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life has not. In some schools they have abolished failing grades and they’ll give you as many attempts as you want to get it right. This doesn’t bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.
Life is not divided into semesters. You don’t get summers off, and very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself; you'll need to do that on your own time.
Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to their jobs. You won't be made to swallow bugs or worms in real life, but chances are you'll have to swallow your pride and a good portion of crow. THAT is reality.
Be nice to nerds. Chances are you’ll end up working for one.