On The Worst But Most Important Time Of Your Life

Very Insightful article for all youth

As the average young man aged between 18 to around 30, you may see life as frustrating in terms of the options available for you. You may also find that these very options may seem to govern your general well-being. It may be frustrating because you may find that you want certain things NOW, but these things require extreme patience along with other character traits. For the younger guys, you may have just cleared University or College and realized that your parents have been paying for you to be somewhere and suddenly, you have to convince someone else why they should pay you to be somewhere (job), if you are lucky enough to get the chance.

This is the point you realize that the society does not consider you valuable, because you may lack what society considers valuable for men. You may lack in experience and resources, but have plenty of time, energy and creativity. Time, energy and brains (creativity) are traits that amount to potential. What makes you less valuable in society is that the society, whether we like it or not, dictates a man's value. Members of society use social worth as the tool to measure a man's value, by looking at how he can benefit the society. Therefore, most people will unconsciously use social worth to measure a man's value, because that is what's visible to them. This is rather unfair for young men but still remains more or less a fact. Now that we know what makes us low in value as young men, let us see how we can build social worth.

As young men, we have that primal drive to compete, set goals and achieve them in order to build our sense of self and ego. However, since majority of us may have nothing we earned to our names yet, society will consider us less valuable. It takes patience to build social status, a stable career and financial stability. The more stable our careers and financial state the more we are at a position to acquire assets to our names and rise our social status. In that case, we would come to a logical conclusion that; 'the likelier you are to increase your social status, the better society will treat you', this statement can be summarized by the word 'potential'. In order to fulfill our potential, however, we have to drop the need for instant gratification and develop patience.

If you think about it, society may treat two young men of the same age group differently according to the potential they show at the moment. For example, a young man who is attending High school, College/Uni or trying to start a business will be treated fairly better than one who is not trying to invest his time anything valuable. Getting an education (or business) is a sign that we have the drive and we are investing in our long term goals, however, we still have nothing but potential to our names. We have the potential because the society considers investing in our future as a step towards the right direction, but since we are not there yet, we may get fairly harsh treatment along with support. On the other hand, a young man who is not trying to do anything valuable with his life will be judged more harshly by society. Reason being, the society also sees potential in him but in this case, potential to become a menace, due to lots of idle time and energy in his hands.

Showing potential comes with advantages such as attracting helpful people and mentors, attracting opportunities and even getting more ideas, which may all accumulate to create what we were short of in the first place; experience. Yes, I know the amount of times you have tried to apply for an 'entry level' job and found out that it's asking for more years than you were in school as the minimum level of experience needed. It takes patience, smart decisions and strategic thinking to turn your potential into actual social worth, AKA social value. However difficult, when you rack up experience and start earning your own things, then your social value rises. Your social value rises, because you are increasingly getting in a position to help improve the society.

However, before getting to that level, how do we make sure that we are well rounded members of society? (Yes, the same society that harshly judges us) We accept our current situation, but take control of the things that we can change. The best thing to do in this situation is to build our inner selves as we are working towards our long term goals. With that I mean we should work on developing our personal traits which will help us fulfill our potential. Some of the personal traits that we could work on are responsibility, budgeting skills, accountability, honesty, respect, leadership skills etc. These personal traits will not only help us fulfill our potential but will stick with us for life.

Another method of taking control is setting our core values and principles then sticking by them. This step requires us to be honest with ourselves, think of what we want to represent us and develop those traits. These core values should act like our character bible. Examples of core values include; a belief that honesty is the best policy, a belief that family always comes first, a belief that you have the power within you to control your happiness etc. Like habits, what we build within ourselves gains strength through practice and eventually becomes an unchangeable part of our unconscious; thus, truly who we are, our intrinsic /self-value.

The youthful period of 18 to around 30 is very important, but may be the worst period of our lives before things get better. What determines how quickly things change, is how we handle life within that period. Remember, as young men, society will always hold us to its standards and judge us by those standards. The way to handle it is to develop our own inner principles and use them as we work hard to raise our social value. If our social value drops, we will still have a strong self-value to start building again. In short, we should focus on what we can control as we build what we lack, in order to be well rounded men socially and individually in the long run.


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