A lot of people spend so much time worrying about classes, credits, grades and parties that they dont realize some important life lessons during their school years. Here are 10 things that you should know but were probably not taught in school:
1. Time flies when youre having fun and even when youre not. Kids do not have a good concept of time. Five more minutes can seem like an eternity when they are waiting for something you promised, but so can the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Weekends and vacations seem to be over quicker than the workweek, but somewhere along the line you hit a point in your life that months and even years pass by in a blur. Every now and then, step back and enjoy what is going on around you. It will be over before you know it.
2. The ability to get your point across is more important than you think. You dont have to be the combination of a master public speaker and a New York Times-caliber journalist, but if you cant explain things out loud and in writing, youre going to have problems at work.
3. How to get along with people you dont like. In high school classrooms and college dorms, its pretty easy to avoid people that you dont like being around. You simply dont talk to them. Its not that simple in the real world. Youre going to have bosses, colleagues, and even neighbors that you just dont care for. You dont need to become best buds, but you need to swallow your pride and bite your tongue. Oh, and keep your complaints about that special someone to a minimum. You dont need to get into a He said, she said ordeal at work.
4. How to put on a happy face, even when youre not happy. Have you ever sat down for a celebratory birthday dinner at your favorite restaurant only to have a scowling waitress who was snippy and rude? Not fun. Its almost guaranteed that there will be days that the last thing on Earth you want to do is go to work, but you have to.
5. Brushing your teeth does more than prevent bad breath. Brushing your teeth each night does more than provide you with minty fresh breath before bed. It helps remove food remnants and bacteria from your mouth. Its tempting to crawl into bed and skip the toothbrush when youre incredibly tired, but you could actually get sick from the habit. Studies have also found a link between brushing and heart disease.
6. How to manage time wisely. Grade school and even high school teachers tend to remind students of important due dates, and young adults going off to college are usually told that most professors arent so kind. Even so, most people are never taught how to budget their time and ensure everything gets done, and most never bother to figure it out on their own. Winging it will only last so long.
7. How to balance a check book and understand financial statements. Even though most young adults have checking accounts and debit cards along with at least one credit card, many have no clue how to reconcile their checking account each month or understand how much interest theyre being charged on credit card purchases and why. Its just about impossible to plan for your future if you cant even calculate how much money you have each month after paying your bills.
8. Shyness can be a detriment. Its possible to be successful student even if youre painfully shy, but being introverted generally goes along with extreme self-consciousness and negative thoughts. If youre so preoccupied with yourselfworrying what others think of your work, your ideas, you in generalyou could miss out on advancement opportunities at work.
9. Impulse buys can haunt you for years to come. Most college grads do not plan on living in their first apartment (or in Mom and Dads basement) for the next ten years. If you load your place with stuff that you really dont need, you might enjoy it for awhile, but then you have to figure out what to do with it. Buying things can also put a big dent in your pocket, and if you pay with credit cards, you could be paying interest for years to come. When youre out shopping and see something that you have to have right now, stop and take a deep breath. Think things through for a few days and go back to the store if you decide you really do need it.
10. Sometimes, average or okay is good enough. Absolute perfection is an impractical goal in most cases. This doesnt exactly mean that you should go through the motions without giving something your best shot, but know when to say when. Sometimes, simply getting something done is better than wasting twice as long trying to get it just right.
Melissa Rhone earned her Bachelor of Music in Education from the University of Tampa. She resides in the Tampa Bay area and enjoys writing about college, pop culture, and epilepsy awareness.
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