Skip To Content

    Adults Are Sharing The Things Every Teenager Needs To Know, And I Wish I Knew Them Back Then

    Teens, take notes!

    Navigating life for anyone, but especially for teenagers, can be super challenging. So it's always helpful when people older than you impart their wisdom to make your journey just a little bit easier.

    CBC / Via

    And when redditor u/notViperX asked, "Adults of Reddit, what is something every teenager needs to know?" people filled the thread with tons of tips to help make life easier.

    NBC / Via

    So here are just a few of the super helpful tips that redditors believe every teen needs to know!

    1. "It's ok to say no to anyone. Don't let anyone in your life guilt trip you into doing something you don't want to do or are uncomfortable with."

    Universal Pictures / Via

    2. "Don't put off dealing with mental health issues."

    "Developing unhealthy coping mechanisms for emotional/mental issues will fuck you up big time down the road. If you have issues, deal with them head on, right away. It can take time but start the work now."


    3. "When you make a mistake, own up to it."

    Disney Channel / Via

    "People are more willing to help you when you admit you did a dumb thing. This goes for school, work, and personal life. Forget to make a payment on a loan? Call and talk to the finance company. Mess something up on a school project? Tell your teacher and ask for a bit of leeway. People will be more likely to help you if you communicate."


    4. "Don't be afraid to ask out that person you like."

    "If you suffer from anxiety like myself, then at least try to work on it. I went through all my teenage years without even trying to talk to girls much at all, and now that I'm 19 and have the chance to look back, I 100% regret it."


    5. "Learn to trust your gut when in strange situations."

    NBC / Via

    "If something feels off, it probably is."


    6. "Just be yourself."

    "Having friends is important, but don't act like other people just to fit in. You may not entirely know who you are yet, and by not being yourself, you're going to lose your true self in the mix. If you're lucky, it'll take many years and a lot of soul-searching even to bring back your uniqueness, and then clump that all together to learn who you truly are. I made this mistake and I'm 37 now. It took me 20 years to undo everything because in college and afterward, I was a chameleon changing my personality with each group of friends I was with. I had no idea who I was. It took a lot of work on my self-esteem to recorrect my thought process."


    7. "The person you love at 17 may not be the person you love at 30."

    The CW / Via

    "You change. They change."


    "If you change together and are still on the same path, that's great! But allow yourselves time to change, allow them time to change, and reassess whether you're simply together for loyalty or because you still really want a future together with who you both are now. Basically, be willing to let love go. It doesn't mean you didn't love them. You both changed, and it happens, and it's kinda sad but will just open you up to being yourself."


    8. "It doesn't matter what others think of you, just what you think of yourself."

    "Live your life such that you can look at yourself in the mirror at the end of the day and be proud of what you’ve done."


    9. "Appreciate what you have, especially if you don't have much."

    NBC / Via

    "There might come a time when your mattress is on the floor and the clothes on your back are the only things you have, and you might not care at the moment, but they're still yours; appreciate them. Appreciate good times, days with nice weather, try to get as much joy as you can from those things, because if you don't you won't get any from elsewhere and no one can give it to you. Later you might look back and regret spending years of your life bitterly, emotionally fixated on negative things, wasting your time with reading too much news, or focusing on shit that won't take you forward in life."


    10. "Stop caring about what random strangers think of you."

    "When I started doing whatever the fuck I wanted in public with no regard to what anyone else thought, I was so much happier. Now, in my early twenties, I dance on the street when I am excited and go on playground swings, and talk endlessly about my passion for origami and rollerskating."


    11. "Open a retirement/investment account to start saving for the future."

    GQ / Via

    "Even a little, what seems insignificant, can make a big difference after 30 years of compound interest."


    12. "Don't let anybody make you believe college is your only option."

    "Skilled trades have huge advantages as well and make the same living. I was always told to go to college and was never introduced to the other side, so I had no idea I could go out and make $100K with no student loans, and I wouldn't have to go to classes for 4 to 8 years accruing huge amounts of debt."


    13. "If you don't have a passion, learn new skills!"

    Sony Pictures Releasing / Via

    "You might find your passion or something you're good at."


    14. "While you shouldn't believe those who say these are gonna be the best years of your life, try to make the most of it and enjoy the ride."

    "Don't be ashamed of your hobbies and passions. Those who make fun of that can go fuck themselves."


    15. And finally, "stay humble."

    BBC Three / Via

    "You aren’t done learning, and you really haven’t seen anything yet. Don’t ever think you know it all, or you’ve seen and done it all because you haven’t even scratched the absolute edge of the surface of what you don’t know."


    Is there any advice you think teens should know that they missed? If so, feel free to drop it in the comments below!

    Note: Some submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity

    BuzzFeed Daily

    Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

    Newsletter signup form