“EIGHTEEN”(18): The Turning point in a Teenager’s Life (Part II) by Shalom Ogbueli.
In my last article, I talked about 3 Crucial things that comes with turning Eighteen (18), where I analyzed the
transition from adolescence to adulthood, important things to note and what every teenager needs to expect from a general point of view. Kindly read up here if you missed it.
In this piece, I will share with you 3 key things you need to do (if you haven’t already) when you turn 18.
Quickly, before I continue, may I share these appalling findings on Attention Span of Teenagers by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S National Library of Medicine with you:
“The Average Attention Span of A Human Being Has Dropped From 12 seconds In 2000 to 8 Seconds In 2013.
25% of teenagers report forgetting important details … Our Average Attention Span Is Now 8 Seconds – 1 Second Less Than A Goldfish”.
While pondering over whether or not this is true, kindly stay awoke while reading this piece!
3 Key Things You Need To Do (if you haven’t already) When You Turn 18.
Learn From Other People’s Mistake
This is an old saying constantly repeated to us by parents, uncles, aunts and teachers. The statement got me thinking aloud – “Life should probably come with a Manual”. Maybe it does. But you have to STAY AWAKE when people read this Manual to you.
Firstly, LISTEN attentively when advised. A tiny voice will be there to tell you that you know it all and don’t need to be told what to do and what not to do. We all have this tiny voice somewhere in our heads. You want to (as much as you can) ignore that voice and open up your ears. Listen when people share their life stories; in it is lessons you won’t be taught in the walls of any classroom.
Read books of great people. Great tips on different aspects of life have been shared in text. All you need to do is READ!
You don’t want to wait until you make avoidable mistakes before re-aligning. While some are able to quickly get their acts together, others aren’t as lucky and hence loose track/control of their lives.
You need a mentor
This is a crucial part of life that rarely gets mentioned. Parents are the default premier mentor for their kids. As one grow older and have to engage with the larger society where you are, you need guidance from both within and outside. This is where the role of mentors comes in.
Find someone positively inspiring that you may look up to as a role model. Your mentor may or may not be related to you. But you should have one or more people that you aspire to be like as you grow older to mentor you on how to live a successful life. It is important that you learn from other’s mistake than wait until you are in a similar dilemma.
Be Willing to Learn, Unlearn and Relearn
Until now, you will come to realize a lot of what you know or believe in is “realistically” wrong. In primary school, we were told that anything divided by 0 is “impossible” and then we move on with such calculations. Teachers don’t even bother setting questions with such solutions. Initially we were also taught that you can’t have a greater number numeric value (e.g 3) divide a lesser one (e.g 2).
But by the time you get to year 9, the narrative changes and you are made to unlearn and relearn what is realistically obtainable. It is the same with life itself.
As a child, you’re being spoon-fed and excused from a lot of things. “Suddenly” you are expected to be independent and abide without supervision. OPEN UP YOUR MIND – be willing to learn, relearn and unlearn the theories guiding your lifestyle.
Eighteen isn’t just another age; you have to learn to inculcate the habits of an adult, grow up, live life and most importantly, make a meaningful use of your time and energy as you journey through life. Contrary to popular belief that “Time = money”, Time isn’t necessarily Money, rather, Optimized Time is Money. And while Money wasted can be recouped with time, all the money in the world can’t buy you time wasted at any point of your life.
Now the world is looking up to what you have to offer. Make this best of your time -be the best version of you!!
(BHC The Shield Columnist)
UFP Social Science