20 Things I Should Have Known at 20

1. The world is trying to keep you stupid. From bank fees to interest rates to miracle diets, people who are not educated are easier to get money from and easier to lead. Educate yourself as much as possible for wealth, independence, and happiness.
2. Do not have faith in institutions to educate you. By the time they build the curriculum, it’s likely that the system is outdated—sometimes utterly broken. You both learn and get respect from people worth getting it from by leading and doing, not by following.
3. Read as much as you can. Learn to speed read with high retention. Emerson Spartz taught me this while I was at a Summit Series event. If he reads 2-3 books a week, you can read one.

— Julien Smith: 20 Things I Should Have Known at 20

I mostly agree with this list, except #8. Trying to be cool is a waste of time. Learn to be comfortable with yourself and you'll come off as cool.

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