Top 5 Things I Would Tell 16-year Old Me

It was another lifetime ago. I was in my last year of high school and making some decisions. It was just about time to go to college, and I was totally trying to play it cool. But, I had no idea what I wanted. I chose biology and pre-med because it seemed like something challenging enough…just challenging enough to be taken seriously.

Of course, when you look back, things are so much easier. Steve Jobs said it well,

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

Now that I can connect dots, I would have told my 16-year-old self a few things:

1.) Don’t choose careers or anything because you think it will be acceptable to others. You will end up spending time doing stuff for other people and not really finding out what you are made of.

2.) Don’t be afraid to explore. I could have taken opportunities to travel, but I was really nervous. I didn’t understand what it would mean. The world is a big place. Don’t get stuck in one area of it unless you don’t plan on doing much.

3.) Listen to your gut and sometimes people who are smarter than you. I took the college career inventory. It said I would do well to explore the fields of engineering or communications. I did something else. Guess what I do now?

4.) Lead. I was afraid to play the lead dog. I waited. I waited to be asked. But, people don’t ask you if they’re already waiting for you to lead. The expectation was there, and I didn’t recognize it.

5.) Ask more questions. Ask better questions. I made some decisions in my head but I didn’t take advantage of mentorship. I could have asked a lot more questions. Instead, I did something which I wasn’t really sold out to. The journey has been a good one. But, I will give my son this advice. Ask more questions. Ask better questions.

What about you? What advice do you have for 16-year-old-you?



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About The Author

My name is Robert Kennedy III. I’m a leadership and communication speaker, trainer and author. I recently released 7 Ways To Know You Were Meant To Lead on Amazon. Connect with me on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebookor on my website, RobertKennedy3.com.