Answer by Julian Reisinger on Quora.
Building lifelong habits starting right now is the way to become superhuman.
The list below might seem overwhelming, that’s why I suggest you only pick one or two habits at first and increase the number once you know what works and what doesn’t.
Health & Fitness
- Floss every day.
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day.
- Find a sport or other physical activity you enjoy and practice it at least twice a week. Preferably a team sport.
- Use PH-adjusted shower gel or soap without perfume.
- Use sunblock! It is the best thing you can do to benefit your life
- Drink water instead of sodas and juices.
- Stay away from addictions of any kind.
- Cultivate a morning routine that involves physical activity, gratitude, showering and getting dressed right after waking up.
Learning & Career
- Study a small amount of time each day instead of learning everything right before the exam.
- Read one book per week. Switch between fiction and nonfiction from time to time.
- Learn programming, Photoshop, Illustrator and Excel as well as you can. These skills alone can open up a world of possibility for you. Tutorials are a great way to start. Learn to code.
- Always have a project you are working on and finish it. Choose something creative that excites you instead of something you think is useful, like these two kids who remade Indiana Jones shot for shot.
- Write down your goals for the next 3 months, 1 year and 5 years. Write down small action steps that will gradually get you there.
- Always try to solve problems on your own before asking someone for help.
- Use every possibility to speak in public. Great public speaking is one of the most valuable skills one can acquire.
- Be honest. More specifically don’t lie and don’t exaggerate. This can destroy your self-esteem.
- Speak with people everywhere you go.
- Surround yourself with go-getters. People who strive to become the best version of themselves and act on it. Stay away from “too cool for school” kids. Popularity fades quickly.
- Call your friends (especially the ones you don’t see often) instead of texting.
- Look people in the eyes. Sounds obvious but I was oblivious to the fact (I avoided eye contact until I was 18.)
- Remember names. Ask how the name is spelled or repeat the name immediately. “Hi I am Robert.” “Hi Robert, nice to meet you.” (How do you feel if someone always forgets your name?)
- Stop dwelling about what you can’t change. Catch yourself each time you are doing it and tell yourself it’ll be OK. Then think about something else.
- Start saving right now! Lay aside 10% of whatever you make and don’t touch it for now. Trust me, you can use it much better in a couple of years.
- Earn money on the side by applying your best skills. This will teach you a lot about life and will hopefully spark the entrepreneurial spirit within you.
- List all your fears, insecurities and unhealthy idiosyncrasies. Eliminate them one by one. I suggest you use systematic desensitization.
- Travel as much as possible. Later it will be much harder to do when you have a job and a partner.
Resources to help you cultivate your habits:
- All you need is 20 seconds of insane courage
- The Habit Change Cheatsheet: 29 Ways to Successfully Ingrain a Behavior
- How do I get over my bad habit of procrastination?
- Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard
- Fail Faster at Habits
- Superhuman By Habit: A Guide to Becoming the Best Possible Version of Yourself
This question originally appeared on Quora: What can I do now (at the age of 16) that my future self will thank me for?
More from Quora:
- How do you do things out of your comfort zone?
- How do you know you are on the right path in your life?
- How does one manage time more effectively?
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