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Most of us want to have our lives sorted before entering our 30s, believing that life will stop presenting new opportunities and experiences after that age.

It’s easy to get caught in the hustle and forget to enjoy life when we have the most energy to do it. But that is not something we will cherish looking back on in our 40s.

A user was curious to know what advice people above 40 who are doing great in life would give people in their 20s. The original poster (OP) raised this question on a popular online forum, and many people gave great advice.

Embracing Balance and Joy in Life

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A user commented, “Don’t fall for the trap that your life needs to be one long narrative that you should be building. Life is best when it’s a bunch of happy moments that happen to be connected. Don’t try to make your life into a novel, make it a book of poems.”

While it’s natural to want a sense of direction and purpose, it’s also essential to appreciate the spontaneous and joyful moments that make life worth living.

Remember, life cannot be a perfectly curated narrative. 

Taking Time to Enjoy the Journey of Life

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Life can feel long if we make the wrong choices, so it’s wiser to take our time and not try to do everything at once. 

In trying to accomplish more and reach our destination quickly, we can forget to relish the ride.  

“Chris Rock said it best: ‘Now, people tell you life is short. No, it’s not. Life is loooong. Especially if you make the wrong decisions,’” another user remarked. 

Never Too Late to Pursue Your Dreams 

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A passionate user shared her experience by saying, “It’s never too late to start again. All in my 20’s I thought I couldn’t just restart my career or dump a useless boyfriend or go back to school because I was already on a certain trajectory.” 

“Made my choices now I gotta make the best of it. That’s total b*******. You have no idea how incredibly young you are and how much time you have to do whatever you want to do,” they continued.

The belief that it’s too late to start over is a common misconception. On the contrary, life offers endless opportunities, and you can always make changes that align with your desires.

Cherishing Lifelong Connections

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“Maintain your friendships. In twenty years you will be so grateful for those people who saw you through marriages, children, illness, and health. People who will go for a trip with you, love your kids, remember you as a young person,” one user commented eagerly.

Close and lifelong friends can bring immense joy and support in your gray times. 

Although it takes effort, it’s worth it in the end. Investing your time and energy in honest friendships will always come back better. 

Grab an Opportunity to Travel and Explore with Both Hands

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A user shared his perspective: “When I was in college, I had the chance to go to Europe but I passed because I had to work at a warehouse.” 

He continued, “I picked staying at a part-time warehouse job overseeing the world. When I finally went abroad in my 30s, it changed my perspective about everything and everyone. Go to another country that is far away and different from your own.”

Traveling and exploring different countries is a great way to nurture yourself and add to your experiences. Of course, work will always be there, but opportunities to travel only come once in a while.

Practicing Patience Is the Key

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One user shared important yet simple advice by saying, “Relax more. Don’t get angry over little things.”

Nothing good comes out of reacting impulsively and losing your temper quickly. Being impatient only leads to strained relationships, missed opportunities, and diminished productivity. It is better to realize this sooner rather than later. 

Life Is Not a Competition

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Life is not a competition about who did it better or sooner. It is key to realize that no one is walking on the same path as you. Everyone has their own trajectory with their own obstacles, and everyone moves at a different pace.

“It’s not a race! Stop comparing yourself to others. Just because they did things sooner than you, doesn’t mean they’re happier or better,” another user commented. 

Find Happiness Within

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One user said, “Never rely on your kids to make you happy. They will have to move on with their lives. Plan accordingly.”

It’s necessary to find happiness within ourselves and not place the burden on our children. Planning our own future and not relying on our children to fulfill our happiness is the key to living a peaceful life.

Save Now, Thank Yourself Later 

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One cannot highlight enough the significance of financial planning, including avoiding unnecessary debt and prioritizing emergency funds and retirement savings. If anything, your future self will thank you for it. 

A user commented enthusiastically, “Don’t put yourself in ridiculous amounts of debt trying to portray a certain image. You’ll spend your entire life trying to get out of the hole you dug or you’ll have to declare bankruptcy.”

Without Health, There Is Nothing

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If you are unhealthy, you can’t fully enjoy anything, and money can’t buy good health. 

Make exercise a priority to keep living your best life and doing what you love with the people you care about.

“Get a regular exercise routine going and stick to it like your quality of life depends on it, because it does,” a user suggested.

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This article originally appeared on Financially Well Off.


Chris founded FWO, the ultimate destination for those looking to achieve financial independence, explore the world and stay motivated daily.

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