Learn important life lessons from older individuals as they share thought-provoking insights to live a fulfilling life.
As we grow older, we confront the reality that we cannot pursue everything in life. We have to intelligently prioritize our time to decide what we want to pursue in life. This understanding grows as people take up more responsibilities and commitments and slowly come to realize their personal limitations. So, it becomes important to know what is important and needs one's attention. u/bigbaddeal asked older people in the community about things that were "absolutely worth leaning into." Here are 10 of the most insightful answers that people had to share.
A healthy diet and exercise because it is easier to stay in shape than it is to get in shape, keep learning because the world keeps changing and find an inexpensive hobby. Learn how money works, make and continue to refine a budget and live within your means, save money. I have never heard in all of my years on this planet someone say, "I'm way too healthy", "I wish I didn't put all that money into diversified investments when I was young," or "I am too well informed and knowledgeable." u/wageslave2022
The problem is you think you have time. Life is very short. When you're young and the days and years seem long, you think life will last forever. That is a trick. You cannot buy more time. Stop wasting it on crap like being on your phone, arguing over piddly things and being hateful or angry. You're wasting your precious time, and none of that matters in the end. Learn to let go of the BS and be grateful for your time. u/PinkOutLoud
Staying active in retirement...both physically and socially. You retire and sit...you die. u/GoHerd1984. Had a neighbor that was retired. He was in his 70s and that man never stopped. Every day he was mowing or loading his mower on a trailer to go mow the yard at some church or widow or school. He planted, he woodworked, he painted. Curtis was nonstop. I was at the beginning of my career working 60 hours a week back then and didn't feel like I could keep up with him. He said he and his buddies retired and most of them died right away. You can't stop or your dead. u/tangoredshirt
You meet very few people in your life you "actually" really connect with. Make sure you keep in touch with them. u/Embarrassed_Bar_1215. My dad taught me this. Early on. You're going to meet one or two people in your life that you will connect with, and that you can trust. Absolute trust. Other than your spouse or maybe a close brother or sister, you're only going to meet a couple of people in your entire life that you can absolutely trust and connect with. 62m, now retired. He was spot on. u/explorthis
Just remember, if someone offers you a breath mint, take it! u/bigb1084. And do something to fix your breath in the long run. It could be a decaying tooth, it could be gut flora, or it could just be a bad strain of bacteria in your mouth that a daily swish of hydrogen peroxide could fix. Either way, don’t ignore it. If someone lets you know one time, it’s probably a bigger issue. u/zero00kelvin
Taking care of your skin! u/psyche-ataraxia. Boomer here. Gawd, take heed to taking care of your skin. I'm a very fair-skinned white guy. Beach trips with other kids were life (So Cal raised). What's SPF? Didn't exist when I was a kid. Baby oil and Coppertone were all that existed. I bathed in that stuff before a beach trip. I wanted to be tan like they were. All I did was burn and peel the dead skin off. It was fun. Now? Basil Cell Carcinomas and Actinic Keratosis blemishes frequently. MOHS surgeries to my ears and face. Many trips to the surgery center to scrape/burn/cut them out. The sun? Don't. Dunk your kids in a vat of 500 SPF sun protectant any time they are going outside. Trust me, it's not worth it. u/explorthis
Avoid debt. Very few things are worth going into debt for. u/dmbgreen. I’d probably change this from avoiding debt to learning how debt works. There are some things that debt is great for - buying a home, being able to afford something you actually need at a higher quality than you can afford so it lasts longer, etc. The issue is that people don’t understand how debt and interest work, and think because they can pay it off they can afford it. My parents always said don’t take debt, but never actually taught me anything about it so of course I used my credit card, etc when I could have saved a lot of money by not doing so. u/CrepsnotCrepes
I see very good answers here. One thing that I encourage everyone to do, is look outside their options. When you feel stuck. When nothing feels good. All that was supposed to go well, went to s***. That is the point when at least I learned to think outside of all my bad options, around all the bad feelings. No matter how stupid or embarrassing it might seem to others. Try to see all your options. We rarely are as stuck as we think. Just a few mental steps away from the problem and the problem looks a lot different when you are no longer inside of it.
Oh. And that feeling when you wait for someone to solve your problem, or you find someone that would take care of your inner feeling of emptiness. Not gonna happen. Fix yourself instead of waiting for some outside power to do it for you. u/kurnimasu
Work for yourself even if you are employed by someone else. Do stuff because it needs needs done not because someone told you. u/linux_user_13. I found that in my experience I had relative freedom as a classroom teacher; now that I work with administration I find what you've described is virtually all I do, as I've been given a role that simply doesn't exist in other schools and that I've been given a lot of leeway to develop in collaboration with others. I enjoy that part of it as long as I allow the part of me that recoils at uncertainty to just sit with and move through it. u/plaidHumanity
Goddamn it, wear earplugs at loud events and be aware of your headphone volume. Hearing aids are expensive, and insurance does not cover them. u/Toasterband. Also, wear your hearing aids! Uncorrected hearing loss is a huge risk factor for dementia. I get so frustrated with my loved ones who never wear their hearing aids. They get left out of most conversations; I see them drift into isolation... I have a weak voice and I just cannot be responsible for shouting at them all day long. u/wombatIsAngry