Your late teens and early 20’s are some of your most important years. What you do during this period lays the foundation for success throughout the rest of your life.
Because of this, today’s post will focus on how you can set yourself up for a lifetime of fulfillment, freedom, and fun.
Let’s dig in.
My Best Success Tips For Young Men
(Relaxing In A Fancy Coffeehouse)
A few weeks back, I was hanging out with some friends at an upscale coffee shop in my neighborhood.
We were talking about goals, and one of my buddies mentioned that his younger brother had just graduated high school and was feeling completely lost.
“What would you do if you were him?” My friend asked.
I leaned back in my chair, pondering what one piece of advice I’d give. After several minutes of thought, I still couldn’t come up with one single answer.
Instead, I came up with five rock-solid pillars for building a successful future.
Every winner I’ve ever met has followed these tips, and doing so has revolutionized their lives. If you’re looking for good habits to emulate, look no further than the tips below:
1. Read Every Book You Possibly Can
(Your Bookstore Will Always Have Something Worth Reading)
Warren Buffett said it best, “Tell me who your heroes are and I’ll tell you who you’ll turn out to be.”
Sadly, most young men don’t have anyone to look up to. They don’t have a cool uncle or grandfather who can teach them important life skills, and all the men they see on TV are drunken buffoons.
Fortunately, there’s a solution. Your local library and bookstore have an endless supply of heroes to inspire you.
For less than $20, you can study history’s most successful scientists, artists, and leaders.
Make it a point to read at least 12 books a year.
That pencils out to one book per month, which is an easily achievable goal.
When you read, read a wide variety of genres. Mix and match so that you get a broad spectrum of different ideas.
Read “how-to” books, classic literature, motivational works, and even horror or si-fi novels.
Seriously, picking up a “low-brow” book about aliens or monsters can often give you crazy amounts of inspiration. I decided to start traveling the world after reading Conan the Barbarian books and re-watching Indiana Jones films.
If you’re curious about some good “all-around” books to get you started with, here’s my suggestions:
- Arnold: The Education of a Bodybuilder – This is the most motivating book I’ve ever read.
- The Millionaire Fastlane – Dumb title, fantastic book. The author dishes out some incredible (and effective) rules for building your own successful business.
- How to Stop Worrying and Start Living – If you’re a worrier (I was one), you need to read this book. I picked this one up at age 20, and it eliminated half my life’s stress by the time I put it down.
- A Short History of Nearly Everything – This is an excellent book on science, history, and space. It’s funny, entertaining, and a great way to learn some tough concepts while still having fun.
- On Writing – Horror master Stephen King tells his life story while also sharing his secrets to becoming a better writer. If you’re a creative type, you’ll really dig this book.
- Bradbury Stories – These are just some fun, imaginative fiction stories. If you have 10 minutes to kill, read one of these tales instead of turning on the TV or mindlessly surfing the web.
Anyway, those are six books I suggest. If you pick them up and read them, you’ll get a whole new take on life. There are also some other book recommendations scattered throughout this article. Give those titles a look too.
2. Develop At Least Two Useful Skills (And Start A Business)
(I Use My Website Building Skills To Create Successful Side-Businesses)
Knowledge is nice, but it’s only half the battle. To reach your full potential, you’ve got to start taking action.
If you’re actively practicing a skill at age 18, 19, or even 24, you have major advantages over all the competition. Allow me to explain.
Suppose you decide to learn web design when you’re 18. Within the first six months, you’ve built a couple of sites and a family friend even hires you to create a webpage for them. This means that you’ve now got “professional experience” which can be used to get more clients or a high-paying job.
In other words, you’re on the fast-track to becoming an expert in your field, all before you’re even old enough to legally buy a beer!
You don’t have to pick anything too “serious” either. When I was in college I started studying poker matches and learning how to win them (just to beat my friends at our penny-ante Saturday night games), and ended up turning my hobby into a nice little side-income.
Once a month I go down to the casino with $20, and turn it into two week’s worth grocery money.
Additionally, books like Small Stakes Hold ’em (warning: tough read), taught me more about statistics and psychology than any school course I ever took. And I use a lot of those concepts in my day job too.
If you have a passion or hobby, no matter what it is, you owe it to yourself to get good at it. Reach a point where you can make money doing what you love, even if it’s only a couple hundred bucks a month, and you’ll have created a nice little side-stream of income for yourself.
3. Lift Weights And Get In Shape
(Here’s What Working Out Can Do For You)
Exercise is the fastest, cheapest, and easiest way to improve your life.
For the first 19 years of my existence, I never lifted a weight or did a workout. Big mistake.
You should be exercising at least three times a week.
Gyms in America, and most of Europe, are cheap. The first one I joined cost about $30 a month, or one dollar per day.
And if you can’t afford going to the gym, or don’t live close to one, do body-weight exercises. It’s what the Navy Seals do, and these workouts can really transform your whole physique.
If you want to see the power of doing nothing but pull-ups, push-ups, and similar routines, check out my results from Special Ops Fitness Training in the picture above.
4. Date Around Until You’re Happy
(Classic Pool Party In Vietnam)
This might be weird advice coming from a site called “Date Vietnamese Girls,” but never make chasing women into your be-all-end-all.
Allow me to explain.
A long, long time ago (when I was 18 or so), I was in love. Smitten, as the kids say, with this cute girl from my hometown. I’d think about her every day and every night. She was always on my mind.
Then, one day, I worked up the courage to ask her out. She rejected me. And I was heartbroken.
I went home, listened to sad songs, sulked around the house, and felt worse than I’d ever felt before. It was so bad, I remember thinking about how I’d be better off dead.
Now here’s the crazy part.
A few months later we went off to different colleges. I made new friends, met new people, got a girlfriend, and forgot all about the chick who’d broken my heart.
At the same time, that girl I’d obsessed over got addicted to drugs, failed out of school, went to rehab, got addicted to drugs again, and then got knocked-up by some creepy meth dealer.
In other words, that girl I was ready to kill myself over ended up being a huge train-wreck. And us not dating actually saved me from dealing with all kinds of drama. But 18 year-old me was too stupid to realize it.
A lot of guys have this same problem. They don’t have enough experience with women to tell which ones are relationship material, and which ones aren’t.
Living in Asia you’ll see dumbass middle-age American men actually marrying local hookers or gold diggers, just because they’re the only girls who give these guys any attention. And things aren’t any different in the USA either.
How many times have you seen guys (maybe friends, maybe family), who marry the wrong girl and end up divorced?
Pretty common, right?
My advice: Spend some time dating around and getting good with women.
You can get a book on dating (Models, by Mark Manson, is an excellent choice), and learn how to become a guy women want to be with.
This is a great skill to learn, because it opens up a ton of new opportunities for you. You can find the perfect girl to marry, date someone who shares your interests, or just get laid over and over again (I’m not one to judge).
Life’s too short to be alone or stuck in an unhappy relationship. You owe it to yourself to learn about women and what they want.
5. Travel To Another Country And See How The Locals Live
(What Vietnam Actually Looks Like)
To expand your worldview, you need to go out and view more of the world.
That’s right, we’re talking about travel.
Now before we get any further, I want to clear up two common misconceptions:
- Travel is expensive.
- Travel is dangerous.
Depending on where you live, you can easily visit another country for less than $1,000. North Americans can go to Central America cheaply, Europeans can visit other European countries without much cost, and Australians can easily visit Asia.
If you do a little planning, it’s not hard to take a trip for only a few hundred dollars.
Basically, you can go experience a whole new culture for the same price as a new video game console and some games.
But with travel your investment pays for itself.
You meet new people, see amazing sights, and learn about how other cultures live. On top of this, you’ll develop self-reliance.
Learning to navigate through a foreign country is character-building and will teach you important skills about discipline and making decisions. A week of backpacking through Mexico or hiking around Europe can do wonders for your confidence and leadership skills.
Also, travel is pretty safe. As long as you stay away from drugs, hookers, and illegal activities, it’s tough to get yourself into any serious trouble.
The Final Word
(Cool Vietnamese Temple)
These are my five best success tips for young men.
If you’re looking for a way to improve your life, or just want a clear goal to work towards, this article is a great start.
Read more books, hone your skills, get in shape, date around, and then go exploring the world.
When you do these things, you build yourself up as a person and start developing good habits that will carry you down the path of success and help you achieve all your dreams.