Lessons, big and small, David Soto wishes he could impart on his younger self.
“The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.” ~Friedrich Nietzsche
I am not at all ungrateful for the cards that have been dealt to me in my life thus far. There are no experiences I would take back. But, if I could go back in time, these are some of the things I would warn myself about.
1) You will not have six pack abs.
Not within the next 22 years anyway but don’t worry about it, beautiful women are still going to sleep with you. Eat and exercise for your health and performance, not for your appearance.
You are going to waste a lot of time with different diets and exercise trends with the sole purpose of trying to look good. It will be a complete waste of time because regardless of what kind of shape you are in, someone will always find you attractive. Case in point; Somewhere around 1998 you will be at an outdoor music event. Because of the heat, you will have stripped down to your undershirt. You will not be in that great of shape, you will be sweating, you will have ridiculous body hair, and you will have a mustache. Regardless of all this, a woman is going to come up to you and throw herself at you. She will say how attracted to you she is and will ask if you have a girlfriend. You will be too shocked to even respond and she’ll walk away. Do not waste your life being concerned about whether you are attractive enough or not.
2) You are going to fall in love many times.
Be grateful for this. This is not a curse. It’s a blessing. Most guys, if they are lucky, experience this only once. It’s going to happen to you many, many times. So don’t propose to each one, please! Just enjoy each relationship, learn from them and carry on as best you can when it ends.
3) You are going to hate your military career at times.
Stick with it, though. They will send you around the world and pay you a lot of money while doing it. In fact, in some of your toughest financial times, they will employ you to help you out, even though you are a pain in the ass. Besides, it’s the only job you will not get fired from.
4) You are going to try to domesticate yourself, with a job and a house. It’s not going to work.
The life you are lead to believe you are supposed to live is not for you. So, if I were you and I am, I would’t bother. Having a house means mowing lawns and cleaning gutters, shit you do not want to do. Working 9 to 5 sucks the happiness out of your soul. Continue renting shitty efficiency apartments for as long as you possibly can. In fact, that photography studio/apartment you dream of having? Pursue that! As far as work goes, you are an entrepreneur. It’s in your blood. Problem is, you have a lot of lessons to learn before you ever make a profit. I suggest you get busy learning from your mistakes now.
5) Pay cash for everything.
Being in debt is going to lead you to some of the most depressing times of your life. Here is the truth: If you can not pay cash for it, you can not afford it. Period! Nothing you want is worth being in debt for. There is no better feeling in the world than not owing anyone anything. That is true freedom and you are there right now. Don’t eff it up!
6) Do not wait till you are 30 to start traveling, dummy.
It’s something you actually love and it will provide you with some of the best times of your life. Hint: You are going to love Guanajuato, Mexico.
7) When it comes to sexual partners, “how many” matters.
That is; How many times you make love to each one. Douche bags brag about how many one night stands they have had. What they are really bragging about is how many women were not willing to sleep with them more than once. You are not a douche bag. In the end, the amount of conquest you have won’t matter to anyone, not even the douche bags.
8) Do not buy useless shit.
You are going to feel obligated to fill your living space with cool knick-knacks and unnecessary furniture. It’s just going to be a waste of time and money. When you move, and you will (a lot), you are going to have to go through the hassle of getting friends, renting a truck or trailer and go through all the hassles of moving. Don’t do it.
You eventually learn, by the age of 31 or so, that being able to move, by yourself with one trip of your own vehicle, is the best thing in the world. Save yourself years of headache and start doing this now. Hint: Buy $100 air mattresses from now on. (No woman will ever care that you sleep on an air mattress. In fact, they will be curious to… try it out.)
9) It’s going to take you 17 years to get your associates degree.
This is actually awesome. You only study things that interest you. You hated school for a reason. That reason is the useless information that they tried to shove down your throat. You are going to obtain several degrees worth of education in the books you read and the experiences you have.
10) Don’t drink so much.
98% of the dumbest things you do in the next 22 years are going to be because you were drunk. A little liquid courage is fine but do not get so drunk that it affects your performance. Remember number 7? You will have one of the coolest sexual experiences a guy can have but you won’t have any recollection of how pleasurable it was because you will be completely shit-faced when it happens. It may as well have not even happened at all. Also, every time you get your ass kicked, will be when you are hammered. You don’t fight well drunk.