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30 Things I Wish I Knew In My Early 20's (Part I)

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Things I Wish I Knew In My Early 20's
(Part 1)

I've been fortunate to have my most exciting, independent and emotionally/sexually/financially rewarding years in my late 20s.

My earlier 20's, while hardly disappointing, were stereotypical for a decent looking kid that was obsessed with the gym and afraid to talk to hot girls.

Some fun, some good times, no specific regrets but overall- a lot of underachievement and missed opportunities by most of our standards.

And Always, a general confusion on where my life was going and how I'd get there if I even had a vision.

It was all okay though.

My early 20's were a learning experience and every success and temporary failure has gone into building who I am today and all that is Good Looking Loser.

All the right and wrong turns gave me direction.

All the anxious days when I didn't have a job and decided to do my best to live my life and do what I wanted - paid off.

I'm going to tell you about what I learned in my 20's - so you can hear it now and don't have discover or debate it with yourself later.

I can't expand on each of these as much as I'd like to but I'll point you in the right direction.

In no particular order...
Hollywood red carpet
1) Sexual Availability/Rejection
This is a term that I coined but had no real understanding of in my early 20's.

In short, sexually availably, so long as you look above-average, explains the vast majority of "rejection".

Unlike the PUA community thinks or the writers mainstream dating advice can even comprehend - not EVERY girl is available and even less are DTF at any given time.
(in fact- here are your unofficial odds)

"Screening" is my term to separate the available girls from the unavailable ones.

Fear of rejection was the primary reason that I was underachieving in my sex life.

Once I realized that I wasn't being rejected for a lack of sex appeal - an entirely new world opened up to me.

2) Looks Threshold

To some degree, every girl (and guy) has a "looks threshold".

They will not, under nearly any circumstances*, sleep with a member of the opposite sex that falls below that threshold. Especially if there are social consequences from judgmental friends.

*alcohol, for example, can change this threshold

At the same time, when sexually available, they are willing to consider/excited to meet someone who passes that threshold.

For the vast majority of girls, including the very hottest ones, the threshold is subconsciously set at 'above-average' and other factors such as Swag Factor (coolness) can easily put you over the top.

In fact, 'coolness' (girls call it "personality") generally matters more to the hottest girls (so long as the looks threshold is met).

Looks actually matter MORE to women than to men.

But the good news is that - nearly ANY guy can become above-average, even if genetically, he weren't dealt automatic entry to the "above-average crowd".

office working going crazy

3) You Will Never Get Rich From Working A Traditional Job
(with very few exceptions)

Wow, I have a lot to say about it.

This will be part of the 'Get Rich' (Get Paid) section of the New GLL.

My definition of "rich" is making over $250,000 PROFIT, after-taxes.

Basically none of the very best professional jobs, outside of a veteran professional athlete or rockstar that gets radio play, come anywhere close to this for guys in their 20's and 30's.

Keep this in mind and repeat it to yourself on a daily basis-





Either you work to make yourself wealthy or you work to make someone else wealthy.

There are two types of people-

  1. Owners
  2. Workers

Workers at "jobs" often work harder, longer hours and are more [book] smart than the people they work for.

But they'll never see a significant amount of money simply because they don't own anything.

With all that said - if you are still in your 20's - DO NOT be too prideful to take a job in a field or from someone that you can learn the industry from. Spending 2 or 3 years with a successful guy (or girl) that you can learn from is arguably more valuable than spending 10 years of just "working" without a mentor or direction.

Your 20's is all about working for experience, learning skills and the business/operating systems of your industry.

You are better off taking a lower paying job that helps you learn how to be an businessman (owner) where you can see the day-to-day operations of the company than to take a slightly higher paying mindless job where you don't have access to any perspective or anyone that isn't a worker.

Boy Toy suggests- getting a sales job is a good start.

4) The Ideal Body is Lean - Not Huge

Although I played sports in my 20's (hockey) and tried to play some sports in my 20's (football) - my gym pursuits were mainly to get respect from guys and love from girls.

You know, gimme a break- just like any average insecure kid in his 20s.

I'm 6-2.

I could have stopped after I was 190lbs at 6-8% body fat.

More girls noticed me (and wanted to take pictures with me) when I was 180lbs than at 220lbs.

Girls will introduce me to their friends when I'm 200lbs but are hardly interested when I'm 240lbs. It doesn't matter how lean I am at 240lbs.

Unless you are 6 foot 6, you are likely creating an uphill battle for yourself once you pass 210lbs.

No, you shouldn't do everything "for girls". But if you want to know what their notion of the ideal body is - I gave it to you.

Teacher teaching college student

5) What You Learn Are Taught in College Does Virtually Nothing For You
With the exception of some pre-professional curriculum, the material you are taught in college (and high school, for that matter) is just about worthless.

Remember - teachers and professors generally have NO REAL EXPERIENCE with what they are teaching. They are educated theorists, like a dating coach/pick up artist - only they teach way more boring stuff that has been allowed state approval.

Secondary education and college is simply a breeding ground to produce an expendable, disciplined, debt-laden labor force for the state or corporations.

If everyone wanted to be an owner, the economy would collapse.

Capitalism (and a workforce willing to be underpaid) can only exist if people NEED to work.

If you begin your 20's - $100,000 in debt, you will have to work or you will starve.

Corporations know that you didn't learn anything relevant in college and that your professor just writes textbooks and has never actually run a business.

Don't worry - they'll catch you up to speed. Whatever skills you actually need to do a job will be outlined in the new employee guidebook and will be taught to you by another worker. 

It doesn't matter if you don't remember what an obtuse triangle is or what the state capital of Vermont is. (Montpelier)

I can officially say that 99.9% of the stuff I was taught in college proved to be worthless.

With that said- I am not totally against people going to college.

What you learn (not what you are taught) can be valuable.

It all depends on your [family's] finances and your alternatives.

I'm somewhat mentoring this kid who just turned 18.

His alternatives are going into the army or working a mindless minimum wage job and living at home - I suggest he inflates his GPA, test scores and claims minority status to get a scholarship. College, in most cases, is a better option than those alternatives.

6) The Key to Success is Taking Action - Not Reading About It
I used to read a lot of personal improvement stuff and maybe you are doing the same right now.

The legitimate stuff will tell you - TAKE ACTION.

Some people feel that "reading" is taking action and learning.

It's not.

It's a safe way to procrastinate and daydream.

This is the Secret to the Universe and it's repeated time and time again - many of us know it but don't yet believe it.

Young people having a Christmas party
7) If You Don't At Least Somewhat Prioritize Your Social Life, You WILL Be Left Behind

When I was in college the idea of a "social life" seemed superficial and way less important than my academics and gym time.

I'd avoid going to parties to make sure I ate my 6th meal of 575 calories and 48.5 grams of protein.

Some of the years it was the right decision, but later in my college career it probably wasn't.

At times-

I was depressed and didn't want a social life.

But I was probably depressed because I didn't have one.

With only the exception of a handful of people I know - those who didn't make their social life at least their #2 priority in their early 20's suffered greatly in their later 20's.

When most people are removed from the college environment, unless they are really good looking, they will struggle to make friends and meet women.

All the hours of being a loner and surfing the Internet add up.

Social inexperience is very real and can negatively affect so many areas of your life.

You won't see the effect until you are in your later 20's and more lonely than ever.

It will be an uphill battle to have meaningful relationships for the rest of your life if you significantly neglect your social life in your early 20's.

8) How to "Mingle"
(make small talk with girls I didn't know)
Though I recommend aggressive ways to pickup girls or at least "Basic Guy Game", I would have settled for just being comfortable and able to make small talk with girls I didn't know.

I wasn't bad at it.

But I wasn't particularly good.

If you are at a party with your friends, be the one to walk up to girls and say-

"Hey, how are you guys doing? We don't know you yet and thought we'd come say hi."

(introduce yourself)

Proceed to make normal small talk -

  • Where are you from?
  • How do you know [name of host]?
  • etc.

That's right. Barge right in. Repeat it until you are vibing with some girls and then go take them to the drinks.

Tell the one you are interested in to "get some air" or "take a walk" with you and take her to a private area.

Graveyard with ghosts
9) You Think You Have Time But You Don't
I'm lucky.

My late 20's and early 30's are my Golden Years.

I've lived my 20's in reverse.

But only somewhat by choice.

Regardless, I will tell you- it felt like yesterday when I turned 21. I still feel like that kid (can't you tell?).

Your 20's will come and go faster than any decade in your life.

Have fun, decide what you want to do with your life and get some experience in that area with the plan of being an OWNER and controlling the means of production.

Your 20's is all about trial and error with some direction and having fun.

Don't let some guy in a cubicle tell you differently, if you actually get good at something significant (and can teach others how to do it), you'll be making more money than he does in 5 months.

A lot of kids have the motto-

"Work Hard. Play Hard."

It's not a bad one, it takes a lot of effort to do well in school, stay in shape and have a great social life.

In fact, I only could manage the first 2.

The problem is that way too many of these "Work Hard. Play Hard." types are counting on their college degree and GPA to actually translate to money - they are still headed for an entry-level salary and more debt.

Instead of simply studying to one day be a part in a system, they would be better off studying and understanding how the whole system functions.

10) Having "Edge" is Sexy

Thankfully, I've always looked masculine and had some natural edge and masculinity.

Only when I moved to LA, however, did I add some 'edge' to my look.

After I got used to my new look, girls stopped looking at me as strickly boyfriend material and more like a guy they wanted to sleep with.

Even if you are good looking, I still suggest building some edge into your look.

Good looking guys with edge are rare and usually the ultimate players.

Like we say, "Dress Like You Are a Somebody, Not a Nobody."

Continued in -

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  • Robert Guiscard

    Just FYI, software engineers working for companies like Google and Amazon can take home 250k+ after taxes, if you include bonuses.

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  • joe

    Thanks Chris. This list is absolutely essential and I've been reaffirmed about these same ideas every where I look.

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  • Sébastien

    Hey Chris, I've been following your website for a while, I found really interesting stuff on it (bathmate, kratom, aa program, etc)

    One thing you said in that article is that if you had not maintained good friends relationship in your early twenties you might find yourself quite alone in your late twenties.
    I was living in Ottawa CA until I was 24 and move to Montréal 4 years ago (I'm 28). I had many friends in Ottawa, but since in Montreal I find it hard to build friends relationship.

    I have few friends in here of course but everyone seems to be in there ''build a family, buy a house'' phase.
    I even have a hard time to find friends to go out whit.
    I work in sales, I like my job and it seems like it’s the only place to find new friends.
    I checked but quite frankly, most of these people seems uninteresting.
    With no pretention, I'm quite good looking and just want to find 2 or 3 cool friends that are still in the ''game''.
    I wrote you twice before and appreciated your advice both of those times.
    I'll be grateful if you just give me tips regarding this situation.
    Thanks man

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  • Jack

    Number 4 was really good,.... Beeing lean is more important than big. I am quite big but I am leaning up now :)

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  • yea i guess i fucked up the social aspect in high school and college. I've always had friends to hang out with but i never partied or went out at all. I woke up to the financial realities of the world when i was around 20 but didn't really start working towards my own financial freedom until i finished college. I'm 23 and it's been almost a year since graduation and my #1 goal in life right now is to make at least 1000 bucks a month on my own so i can quit my job. I'm potentially sacrificing social experience and party time now to hopefully enjoy my late 20's, 30's, 40's... etc as a free man. I was almost 3 weeks into the AA program but had to stop to focus on this. I even stopped going to the gym and playing sports. All my effort is going towards this 1 goal. I just wasn't making enough progress before.

    lol i even tell myself sometimes that once i make it, ill go on a hooker binge to destroy all my sexual anxiety first, then create a SUPER safe POF profile just so i can go on tons of dates and get comfortable quick. I'll also do the AA program in 1 or 2 weeks tops since i'll have all the time in the world once i free myself :) Unless WW3 starts or the economy collapses again anytime soon, my future is in my own hands.

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  • Theodore

    What would you suggest for a junior college, currently a rising senior, in terms of being a successful entrepreneur and making it?

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  • Hey Theodore --- specifically define WHAT YOU WANT TO DO/BE.

    as specific as possible.

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  • Rodrigo

    I would add to have a clearly defined life purpose and think about it everyday, the N1 of Napoleon`s Hill 17 principles of success

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  • If I could go back in time I would slap that loser and tell him you cant get rich working for other people, I'd probably bitch slap him. Great post.

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  • yoseph

    Hey Chris i've been meaning to write to you for a while about other articles that i've enjoyed or things i'm doing now because of those. Today this spoke to me cant wait to read the other pages. i woke up today looking for something like this i ready to make some moves. I guess i just needed guidance or direction. Thank you chris.

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  • Thank you, I appreciate you writing in!

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  • awesome post man- lots of things I recognize and realize now but its always nice to hear it from someone who's already seen it all:)

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  • Manny

    Well, I wish there was a site like GLL during my early 20s, I would have started using Phenibut, Sizegenetics, Phallosan and a whole other bunch of stuffs I discovered on GLL. This would make a good addition to the list. \m/

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  • papi

    I'm not that good at mingling most especially walking up to girls and introducing myself during my early 20s days. Looking back I was thinking that maybe I was just afraid of getting rejected. As time goes by, I gradually found out that there's really nothing to be afraid about. I think experience through time also played a big factor in the confidence that I have gained.

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  • iceman

    my early 20's was like a blur to me. I did not know what to do with my life, no direction whatsoever. sure, there were a lot of fun things to do but everything was just happening without any plans. it felt kinda i was in a bubble or something. Everything sort of settle down in my late 20s. I guess I just needed time to do what I had to do during those times.

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