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Thread: What would you...

  1. #1
    Registered: Feb 2000
    Location: Portreath Cornwall UK

    What would you...

    As we have so many old taffers buzzing about at present it could be a good time to ask the same question that Beyoncé has asked; What would you tell your 20 year old self if you could?

    I would say “stick to the career you are in right now and start making babies”...

  2. #2
    Registered: Sep 2000
    You're basically a good kid, and to an outsider things probably look good, but you're not actually making much of an effort with yourself and that's probably why you feel unhappy quite a lot of the time. You need to work much harder at university, and to get out a lot, lot more, and worry far less about being in the right relationship. That last bit will sort itself out in time - and you have no idea how lucky you're going to get. Eating an entire packet of Bourbon creams individually dipped in Nutella is an exceptionally poor choice.

  3. #3
    Registered: Aug 2000
    Location: VIE, .at
    Stop giving so much care about what other people think. It's poison for the mind and a waste of time. Cut down secret shame, regrets, being upset at trivialities and imagining what other people think to 5% and that's a normal level. Don't be afraid to cut off contact with toxic people; be generous with second, third, … chances.

    You're doing it almost everything wrong because of your incredible ignorance; your upbringing is objectively all screwed up and a huge waste of potential. Education should have included: coming to an understanding of how people behave the way they do and how the human mind works and its flaws, Western high culture, rational philosophy – but apparently that's asked too much from a workers' family and the school system at that time.

    Keep up the good stuff despite what everyone else says: giving in to impulsive curiosity, messing with Free software and the Web, travelling and crashing at friends, sci-fi and nerdy culture.

    History is nifty, but you don't know that because your only teacher sucked balls.

    Find a way to skip military. It's utterly useless and you avoid a debilitating injury.

    Skip university. You don't have the discipline for it and Mum doesn't know what the fuck she's talking about.

    Shyness is a curse that can be overcome. Set yourself the goal and pursue it. For a big boost in confidence, get Mensa tested ASAP.

    You have two more half-brothers you do not know anything about. That's not a good state of affairs.

    Become crazy rich from perfect hindsight by learning the following technologies, investing in the following stock bonds and cryptocurrencies: …

  4. #4
    Registered: May 2004
    Quit smoking, drink less, and start learning languages ASAP. I doubt the 20 year old me would listen, though.

  5. #5
    Registered: Aug 2004
    "Buy stock in Google and Amazon" lol

  6. #6
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: Lady Valerius' bedchambers
    Quote Originally Posted by Pyrian View Post
    "Buy stock in Google and Amazon" lol
    "As soon as you hear about 'Bitcoins' in a few years, buy as many of those as you can"

  7. #7
    Registered: Mar 2005
    Location: Netherlands
    After the depression you're currently in is over, continue pursuing a programming career again ASAP. Don't wait until you're 35.

    Don't carry the weight of the world on your shoulders, just be good to people in your vicinity. "Do not be overrighteous, neither be overwise—why destroy yourself?" (from the Bible).

    Learn to take chances with the opposite sex within reasonable bounds.

    Don't punish yourself for having dark thoughts and don't even try too hard to prevent them, just accept them when they occur, they'll pass after a while. This is key to getting out of your depression.

    Stop analyzing and debating which media products (movies, shows, books, games) are good for you and which are harmful. Watch/play/read what you like. Don't watch porn though, it won't make you happy.

    Stay off the Dutch autism forum and the Christian gamers forum, they take up too much time and the people there will make you feel miserable.

    Visit museums more often, including modern art museums. The artworks will provoke feelings within you which you cannot express in words. This is fine, it's good for you.

    Read books written in English in their original language. Watch British/US movies with English subtitles instead of Dutch. Stop frustrating yourself by getting annoyed with bad translations.
    Last edited by Harvester; 11th Aug 2018 at 15:03.

  8. #8
    Registered: Sep 2002
    Location: 1, Rotation: 0
    OK, you're a late starter, but still you're basically doing fine. You could have made more of an effort at university, but hang in there and you'll get a nice job eventually. Worry, but don't panic about the future.

    Keep in touch with your friends and don't let them slowly drift away. Well, not all of them.

    That thing you've long dreamed about - writing a novel, travelling around the world: Do it. Do it now or as soon as you can afford to (which, by the way, you'll be able to afford sooner than you think). Life is now. Don't wait for it to start.

    Learn to code. It's an occupation that suits you and will always be in high demand. Even if you'll never work at it professionally, it may be helpful for your career.

    Stay healthy and fit, and don't become a slob. But don't make it the centrepiece of your life, either. Quit smoking and go easy on the drinking.

    Some of this advice I've been heeding by and large, others not so much.

  9. #9
    Registered: May 2004
    Location: Canuckistan GWN
    Pick just one of your brilliant ideas and complete it.

    Also - put 10% of your earnings into savings/investments.

    Also - stop buying stupid crap.

  10. #10
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Nicker View Post
    Pick just one of your brilliant ideas and complete it.
    Heh. This could be me at any age TO me at any age.

  11. #11
    Mistaken for a man
    Registered: Jun 2000
    Location: Helsinki, Finland
    Quit your day job sooner, before it has drained you so badly it takes a year to recover.
    Eat less now that you can't exercise as much as before!
    Stop worrying so much, you can't save everyone, especially those who don't want your help. Trying to help becomes a habit that will eventually hurt you. So does worrying in general.

    Otherwise you're on the right track: keep writing, don't have kids, be kind to others and enjoy life every chance you get (there'll be a time it will be very difficult so you'll need the memories).

  12. #12
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Melbourne, Australia
    The hell that is high school for you, will be over soon. Life is going to get HEAPS better, whilst also putting you through further nightmares which you will overcome and be a stronger, better version of yourself afterward + FAR more positive. Live life to the fullest and never be too scared to try anything at least once. You'll be going off to uni in about 10 years, which will be a massive life changing experience for you. You'll be a much more confident person by the time your done with that. Don't go back to call center work afterward. Get into teaching. You'll love it, the money is great and it will inspire you to develop your own indie games since you'll already be in that environment of teaching that to students. Teaching will greatly improve your confidence levels even more than university did. You can do anything you put yourself 100% into. Near the end of uni you'll meet your future wife. Good things ahead.

  13. #13
    Registered: Oct 2000
    Location: Spinning off the karmic wheel
    Nothing. He wouldn't listen anyway.

    Also, gotta look out for those time travel paradoxes

  14. #14
    Registered: Feb 2002
    Location: In the flesh.
    Yeah, I don't know what I could say. You are going to screw up in most every way imaginable and have fun doing it? Want to switch places?

    I would be deathly afraid of the butterfly effect. Buuuuuuut here are the powerball numbers for this date. Hide these three sealed containers at these marked locations at your parents house because I know you will lose them. Do it NOW.

  15. #15
    El Shagmeister
    Registered: Jul 2000
    Location: Under your fingernails.
    Devour everything.

  16. #16
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: British Columbia, Canada
    I mean, shit happens right? Don't beat yourself up over every little thing. Anxiety is fucking enough terrible.

    You should come out. You know what I'm talking about. Those fears aren't valid. Just do it. But also, be prepared to make life long friends as a result, they'll mean the world to you. Your family won't mean shit.

    Also, get out of programming, it sucks. Do something more enjoyable.

  17. #17

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain

    If only I could turn back time...

    For me, I can not reply to this thread without this one question:

    A) should I treat this as events actually happened, or
    B) should I treat this as if things would have progressed normally for a man of my age.

    Let's start with the mutuals.

    The basics are these.

    Don't care about what other people may think about you. The truth is that most people don't think about you, they're too busy thinking about themselves, either because they're insecure and worry about what other people think about them, or because they're complete dicks and think they're awesome, and don't think about you anyway.

    Shyness, social awkwardness, can be overcome. Alcohol can help, but to not rely upon it, find the strength within yourself first. Although, clearly, alcohol does help temporarily.

    Get more exercise. Don't care about why you're supposed to do it, just do it because it will make you feel better. Physically and mentally. Start now. NOW NOW NOW!

    If A)
    Ignore university, jobs, careers, whatever. You're gonna die prematurely anyway from long term illness. Focus on what you like and enjoy. Do that.

    If B)
    Computer science may seem like the way of the future, but it really is not. Study more about those subjects you find so mindnumbingly boring, like history, religion, languages, culture. All of that will be very useful in the future when you'll have to deal with people who are not like you. All the computery stuff can be picked up later, but expanding your mind and opening it up to things unknown can not. You don't want to be an ambassador for your country? Tough. You will become one as soon as you leave your country, which you will, and you'll need all of these skills.

  18. #18
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Deep inside mediocrity
    Go AWOL and move to Canada.

  19. #19
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night for a Klondike bar?

    I would slay you all!

  20. #20

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain
    Quote Originally Posted by Daxim View Post
    Find a way to skip military.
    I did. At the time, when I was 18, we had conscription in my country. I did not want to do military service. I knew I wasn't strong enough. I decided to fake something. As it turned out, my eyesight was so poor (-10!) I did not have to fake anything, and I was much relieved. Two, three years later, I was a much stronger person, and would have loved the experience of going through military training, just for all the stuff I could have learned. At this point, I was soaking up all the possible knowledge I could absorb, mentally and physically, and I would have loved the challenge. The going to war bit, not so much, but that was a moot point anyway, because at this point in time conscription was abolished. I had a very narrow escape, in more ways than one. One of the guys in my class did what I did not, and died in the peace keeping force in Bosnia. So yeah, I regret not getting the education, but not so much regret the dying in a foreign country being shot in the head by someone you were sent to help.

  21. #21
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    I'd do everything the same according to the original plan. The one thing I'd add is I'd tell myself how to deal with one woman along the way, having foresight about what would be coming (basically let her go, do the degree, and start teaching; she'll come back anyway, which is the mental trick that would have probably helped me barrel through all of that), which should keep everything on track from that point and hopefully keep the woman, the job, the books and articles, etc, and everybody's happy. I can't guarantee that it'd work though, but at least I'd have the PhD and teaching position & other things by then.

    The one thing I can say for my life is I didn't do anything wrong at any point. I did everything that I wanted in just the right way you're supposed to do it. To the extent I've had problems, they were the pure misfortune of cruel and stupid fate, and not having the concentration to see the things I was doing through (which were all the right things). Nothing I could have done to avert it really, although I could have positioned myself better, or got my mind in a better frame, with impossible foresight to carry out the same plan anyway.

    I guess little things I might add are keep running a bit more often, buy the piano/keyboard earlier so I could have started serious practicing a bit earlier, prioritize the big tasks a bit better and go down the list... But honestly I always get to these things eventually, and other things I couldn't control were stopping these from happening earlier too. So whatever...

    If I were really being strategic about this, I'd just give myself information to make millions of dollars which would serve as a cushion that would have allowed me to do everything I wanted with that safety net, and still living a good life.

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