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My Boy Is Now A Man: Words Of Wisdom for My 18-Year-Old Son
Yesterday, my son turned 18 years old and I wanted to write something for him to always remember in his journey throughout adulthood:
Becoming an adult grants you freedom that you didn't have before as a child but with freedom comes responsibility. As you're free to move around the world without dependency, you're tasked with being accountable for your actions and no one will accept excuses of naivety.
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You are free to succeed and fail but the choice is always yours. You will have periods of struggle in your adult life and I want you to understand that this is normal.
While you are struggling, there will be people who'll want to coddle you and make excuses for you. Though they have good intentions, this behavior will hinder you, and not help you if you accept their premise.
Those moments of struggle will make you more resilient and appreciative later in life when you've reached the other side. Struggle will give you character and humility but you should always remember, that the length of time you struggle is ultimately up to you.
As a child, people default by giving you empathy but now that you're an adult male, the only people who care about your problems are you and your immediate loved ones. When you're walking through life's broken glass, very few people will care that your feet are bleeding.
I am sure you will have moments of doubt and when you do, I want you to remember that this is part of the journey towards prosperity. You can either be your own best friend or worst enemy but once again, this choice can only be made by you.
The greatest weapon and shield you can have in your possession is confidence. When you are down, your confidence will pull you back up and when you'll get attacked by others, your belief in yourself will shield away those arrows aimed at your character.
When you stand, stand with your head held high and when you sit, don't slouch. People will notice this behavior and want to be around you, including women. Confidence is attractive to everyone and it'll benefit you greatly to be that beacon for people around you.
The number one thing that brings down great men is chasing women and if you're a truly confident man with a purpose, you won't need to chase women, they'll chase you. Don't get sucked into the trap of vanity, so always consider what's in her heart.
As a young man, your objective should be to build your skill set and resume to ultimately reach a level of sustainability. However, don't let money define you, and never sell your soul for a dollar. Money is not a replacement for character and it can't bring you internal peace.
There will be people who will try to use you because they see you have something special. You'll need to listen to your instincts more than ever before about who you should be around because it could mean the difference between life and death.
Not everyone who says something nice to you is your friend and you'll need to pay attention to the subtleties of their behavior to know their real intentions: never ignore the red flags.
For example, if you know someone who is always gossiping about others around you, it's likely they're gossiping about you too.
Lastly, don't be like your father: carve your own path. My objective is to help you with guidance to reach the point of happiness in your life. I want you to question everything and everyone, including me. I know you're capable of being an even better man than I am.
You're not on this journey alone as I'll always be by your side and your greatest advocate into manhood.
I love you. Happy Birthday.
- Your father