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Ryan Stephens 🥃 @ryanstephens
, 29 tweets, 7 min read Read on Twitter
Here's a tweetstorm featuring 25 things I intend to teach my 2-year old son.

[Spoiler Alert]: A bit of a surprise for those who make it to the end...

1.) You should always try to go to bed smarter than when you woke up.

For the best way to get smarter, see #2.
2.) You should read a lot. Reading makes you more empathetic & this world needs more empathy. In our house, you’ll always be surrounded by books

"In my whole life, I have known no wise people (over a broad subject matter area) who didn’t read all the time — none. Zero." - Munger
3.) Sleep more. You sleep more than 11 hours a day right now. As you get older, there will be more demands on your time and it’s tempting to sacrifice sleep. Don’t. People who sleep more have better health, sharper thinking, improved memory and many other benefits.
4.) Practice gratitude.

Gratitude is the key to happiness.

"…the more a person is inclined to gratitude, the less likely he or she is to be depressed, anxious, lonely, envious, or neurotic."

MORE:… (via @bakadesuyo)
5.) Make time to play. Schools that outperform U.S. schools have a strong emphasis on play. Playing will help you use your creativity and develop your imagination. Playing also relieves anxiety.

This is the best book I've read on the importance of play:
6.) Manage your energy, not your time.

Time is fixed (see 6a), but your energy isn’t.

Managing your energy is about being fully present when you’re trying to achieve something, but it’s also about renewing your energy when you need to to recharge.
6a.) “Life is short” is not just a cliche. Here’s a good visual to illustrate just how short:…

"Cultivate a habit of impatience about the things you most want to do."  —  @paulg

7.) Early in your career, optimize for learning over money & passion

Money doesn’t buy happiness (unless you spend it on others)

Passions emerge as your expertise grows

Learning the right things from the right people can eventually help you leapfrog those who just chased 💰
8.) Willpower is a limited resource.

Use it to build good habits to create rituals.

Some of my favorites: exercising, reading, and building meaningful relationships.

All three will positively impact other areas of your life.
9.) Forget busy

This disease of being “busy” is spiritually destructive to our health and well-being. It saps our ability to be fully present with those we love the most in our families, & keeps us from forming the kind of community that we all so desperately crave. — Omid Safi
10.) Focus on the work/process, not the outcome.

The final outcome is often hard to control, but if you focus on the process and build on the momentum, you can enjoy the process and be pleased by where you end up.

Case in point:
11.) Your day job means that someone pays you to learn. Jobs, even ones we like, are often frustrating, but your job means someone is paying you to learn. Paying the bills provides the fiscal security you need to recklessly engage in your hobbies, passions and creative pursuits.
12.) Introduce people. This is one of the best ways to strengthen your network.

This matters because the adage that “it’s not what you know, but who you know” is true.

Networked intelligence is critical b/c the most valuable information is almost always in someone else’s head.
13.) Do what you say you’re going to do. Sadly, most people don’t.

Consistently doing what you say you’re going to do will separate you from others.

By showing that you’re reliable, you will build your credibility and earn people’s trust and respect.

This builds discipline.
14.) Take personal responsibility. Don’t make excuses. Nobody likes the person who makes mistakes and blames other people or circumstances.

Don’t let life happen to you. You can’t control others, but you can control yourself and how you react.

You are not a victim.
15.) Don’t ask for permission. Gatekeepers are going to tell you “no” your whole life, but understand that the world wants you to be vanilla.

Demand more of yourself. Life is short, remember?

There’s not a specific path. Just do things.
16.) Cede credit. Unfortunately, & especially in the work place, credit is regularly assigned incorrectly. Giving others credit is the generous thing to do. There's enough to go around

The best leaders always cede credit. It keeps people motivated & it validates their hard work.
17.) Learn to say “No” often.

“You’ve got to keep control of your time, and you can’t unless you say no. You can’t let people set your agenda in life.” — Warren Buffett

If time is our most valuable resource (6a), then we should free up as much of it as possible by saying "no."
18. Learn how to cook.

By cooking your own food, you’re automatically eating better than 95% of what you would get at a restaurant. You’ll know exactly what you’re putting into your body, save money on eating out, increase your social opportunities, and (maybe) impress a woman.
19.) It doesn’t hurt to ask. Make sure your ask is mutually beneficial.

Too often we’re scared to speak up, or to ask, because it might be awkward.

Pro Tip: The more value you provide the person you’re asking before you ask, the more the inclined they will be to help you out.
20.) Learn to be a satisficer.

Unless it’s an extremely important project or decision, try your best to make decisions and take action once your criteria is met.

That doesn’t mean you’re doing lackluster work or making reckless decisions; just that good enough, is good enough
21.) Walk.

Walking is free and it’s decent exercise. The list of physical benefits are endless. In addition, there’s a whole host of mental benefits as well. Walking can also be a great social activity. And, finally, walking is a great way to just relax and think.
22.) Be curious, not critical.

We’re often dismissive of things we don’t understand, but try to be open-minded. You may come to the same conclusion you started with, but be curious, ask questions, and try to learn something new.

Be willing to change your mind.
23.) Self compassion is more important than self esteem. Talk to yourself kindly, the way you would a friend in need.

Self-compassion offers the same advantages as high self-esteem, with no discernible downsides.

It is associated with significantly less anxiety and depression.
24.) Cut people slack. Nobody is perfect.

It’s cliche, but you never know what other people are going through.

When people make you angry or disappoint you, don’t carry that burden around. It will just weigh you down.

Life's too short for that nonsense.
25.) “The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.” ― Marcus Aurelius

There’s countless things in this world that you can’t change or control, but the one thing you can is how you react. Your world will be shaped by your thoughts and what you focus on.
As promised, for those who made it all the way through..

My wife and I have been working on, and are ready to debut our newest collaboration -- a project we've started to pass along the things we’ve learned to our son so that he has resources to navigate our ever-changing world.
If you want to be one of the *first* people to see it live, you can check it out here:

It's still very much a work in progress, but today's my 34th birthday and I promised myself I'd ship by today.
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