If you haven’t made mistakes in your professional life, you are going nowhere. Here are some necessary mistakes everyone should make before turning 30:
Mistake 1. Risk everything
Risking everything for an uncertain career or romantic relationship might seem like a huge mistake to most people, but everyone should do it once early in their life. It can pay off. And if it doesn’t, you will at least learn something from the experience, so it won’t be a total loss.
Mistake 2. Thinking you know it all
This mistake will keep happening to you for some while, over and over again, whole life. Slowly or rather each mistake will make you appreciate, “am not always right”. The sooner you reach here the better.
Mistake 3. Bomb a big presentation
Tendulkar gets out on a duck, professional speakers, champs lay an egg now and then. It happens. You will come out of it. What you learn is priceless – what not to do, which of your strengths flopped, what to do next time.
Mistake 4. Getting fired
Getting fired in your 20’s is recommended. Tough life experience, if there was a performance issue involved. Shatters you, but is a huge wake-up call. Better to learn that in your 20s than in your 40s. It reflects on developing the necessary skill and teaches you to always have a viable backup plan.
Mistake 5. Change jobs three-four times
Sure, it won’t look great on your resume – but by trying out different career paths you’ll gain insight into what your true calling. True answers happen when you are at the rock bottom.
Mistake 6. Take the wrong job for the wrong reasons
Mostly money is the culprit or nonavailability of an option at that time. Earlier this strikes it helps define what you seek as fulfillment from your career.
Mistake 7. Hit rock bottom
Before the wildly successful “Harry Potter” series came to life, J.K. Rowling was a single mom in her 30s on welfare, with no job, no money, and a child to raise on her own. In a 2008 commencement speech at Harvard University, Rowling discussed how hitting rock bottom forced her to finish the first Harry Potter book. She says:
“I’ve often met people who are terrified – you know, in a straitjacket of their own making – because they’d rather do anything than fail. They don’t want to try for fear of failing,” she says”. [Hitting] rock bottom wasn’t fun at all – I’m not romanticizing rock bottom – but it was liberating. What did I have to lose?”
Without considering and thinking about anyone else’s feelings, saying whatever’s on your mind (regardless how close you are with them or not, although, have seen you tend to this more with people you are closer too). Figuring out where those lines are and that everyone has different tastes and perceptions are a critically important skill to learn.
Mistake 9. Burn bridges
Burning a bridge once or twice can actually be beneficial (you don’t need to make this as a habit though). How to walk away from a bad situation with your self-esteem intact is an art. This doesn’t come easy, it is like learning to ride a cycle or swim. Once you get it you don’t forget it lifelong.
Mistake 10. Go out with friends, despite you know the work deadline
This seems to be like Murphy law when you would have a project with a sharp deadline that is when you would want to party most. Your mind says, “ kaam toh ho he jayega (work will happen), but there is no retake of this moment with friends”.
Anyone saying don’t, you will do it anyway.