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30 tips people wish they could give to their younger selves to save them from regret down the road

A Reddit thread asked people to share the one piece of advice they would give to their younger selves and they poured their hearts out.

30 tips people wish they could give to their younger selves to save them from regret down the road
Cover Image Source: Pixabay/ Photo by gaganmasoun

Experience is the best tool to succeed in life. It helps people grow and succeed in their pursuits. It is only through life lessons that people become more aware of the consequences of their actions. They have more knowledge regarding the permutations and combinations involved in each decision. Experiences are garnered through both success and failure. As the insight it provides is unmatched, there are several instances where people think "I wish I knew this before."

This thought inspired u/laradoxical to pose this question to the r/AskReddit community: "What is one piece of advice you wish you had when you were younger?"

Image Source: Pexels/ Photo by cottonbro studio
Image Source: Pexels/ Photo by cottonbro studio

The objective of the thread was to ask people the one thing they would like to say to their younger selves, in order to protect them from hurt and regret. The responses were both emotional and poignant. Redditors touched upon a variety of things like prioritizing, futility and focus. The essential message was that individuals should always live in the present, and not bring themselves down for things that would have no meaning in the big picture. Here are 30 of the best pieces of advice given by people on Reddit by virtue of their experience.

1.  Do not let bad thoughts overcome you

"You can talk back to your brain. Talk back to your bad thoughts and tell them they’re wrong. Not every bad thought is a reality. Also, bad days are okay. Bad day does not equal a bad life" - u/henryspofford

2. Be Practical

"'Do what you love' is bullsh*t for most of us. Do something you like and that provides you with the conditions to do what you love on your free time"- u/vewvea

3. Be your own favorite person

"Not everyone would like you. Stop trying to please everyone."- u/yshsmya

4. Stop making other people the focus of your life

"Don't let your happiness depend solely on someone else."- u/beano724

5. Patience is the key

"Learn self discipline. Especially over your mind. Then you can wait out a lot of your own problems. If you rush life because 'you can’t wait any longer' you will have so many griefs. Disciplined patience can do a world of wonders."- u/remnantteen

6. Face your problems

"Being an adult is about running in to problems and in one way or another overcoming all of them. No putting off or discarding the ones you don't like. They're your problems and you have to deal with and resolve them."-u/Yeah_But_Did_You_Die

7. Dating life is not as hard as you think

"Stop pining over people and just ask them out as soon as you realize you like them. If their answer is yes, then yay! If their answer is no, they you don’t waste a bunch of energy having a crush on them when it won’t go anywhere. I finally followed that advice and it’s working out great."- u/thesheba

8. Focus less on others and more on your own self

"Don't spend so much time thinking about what other people think of you (they care more about themselves than you). Spend more time discovering yourself and loving/accepting who you are instead of wasting time doing things to get their approval. That, and... When you thought that (whatever drama/comment/snarky remark etc) was about you, it wasn't really about you. It was about them."- u/missylo

9. It's a learnable skill

"Practice talking to people and being with people. Social skills can be learnt like any other skill! It just takes patience, and practice."- u/misterlegato

10. Parents are not Gods. Don't treat them as such.

"Your parents are not always right, morally OR factually. And sometimes, they are more concerned about their own reputation than your wellbeing. Basically, your parents are only human."- u/difficultymedium

11. Save yourself from toxic relationships in the pursuit of love

"Don’t be so desperate for love and affection you find it in the absolute worst places. Wait your time until you’re old enough and don’t be like me and make a million mistakes you’ll regret on abusive men who never deserved the time of day."- u/tinstinabeenabins

12. Hardwork, contrary to popular opinion, is key

"If you rely on 'being smart' you will lose every time to people who rely on working hard."- u/RockyRockington

13. Use your own judgment

"Challenge everything. Don't just accept something as true just because someone you trust says it is"- u/cmartinxc

14. No shame in asking for help

"There are good people in the world that will be glad to help if you reach out. Obviously there’s plenty of sh*tty people out there too, but don’t be afraid or too prideful to ask for help when you need it. I still struggle with this because I feel like I don’t want to burden anyone with my problems, but every time I’ve worked myself up over reaching out to someone and then did it anyways, I always think 'man I wish I’d done that sooner.'"- u/JodyeMarrin

15. Success and failure are two sides of the same coin

"Don’t let compliments get to your head and don’t let insults get to your heart."- u/Trollstack

16. Jealousy does more harm to one's own self than others

"To let go of my jealousy. I was always so jealous of my peers who were better at sports, who were more academically gifted, who had more friends... The jealousy ate away at me for so many years and soured my relationship with my peers. It was such a waste. I could have used all that energy to maybe try and improve myself or focus on my strengths instead of hating others for being what I wasn’t. It’s alright if you’re not the best, we can’t all be number one. No ones perfect. What matters is that you be the best you can be."- u/SkyGuardianOfTheSky

17. Everyone deserves respect

"Treat everyone with respect. Friends, family, coworkers, doormen, waitstaff, hairdressers, etc. Everyone deserves dignity. Its seems a little thing, but its huge to those on the receiving end."- u/Common-Ad6470

18. Financial planning is a must

"Pay yourself first. Take 10% ( or $10 - anything) of your paycheck and put it in an IRA and don’t think about it. 65 year old you will thank you. Compounded interest is a beautiful thing. Also, buy a rental property as soon as possible. Passive income will make a difference later in life."- u/Eventhegoodnewsisbad

19. Appreciate Parents

"Appreciate your parents. Tell them you love them. They won't be here forever. I'm 23 and both my parents have passed. The pain of unspoken words and actions I regret but can never actually apologize for is the worst."- u/jennej_dtsab

20. Mistakes are not the end of the road

"It’s natural to be afraid of the unknown, but confidence comes from moving forward regardless of that fear. Making mistakes is a natural part of life. Growing out of that stage in my life where my mistakes were not just mistakes but personal failures was a huge problem I am still working on today."- u/Nosylibrarian

21. Dreams are important

"Do everything in your power to pursue your dreams. I am still very young but it’s something I’ve realised a lot of adults end up regretting. If you like something keep doing it"- u/Bojackin

22. Nobody is judging you

"Don’t quit things just because you’re not naturally gifted at them. There’s a lot to be gained from being part of a team even if you’re not the star player. Also, no one is looking at you and no one cares what you’re doing! They’re worried about themselves."- u/Noodlenuggetdonutdog

23. Stop comparing

"Stop comparing yourself to others. Everyone is at a different stage in life. Sure... you’re the same age or around the same age, but it doesn’t mean you’re in the same stage of life. Do what’s best for you in your moment of life. Do what makes you HAPPY!"- u/diemmzzie

24. Incorporate good mental habits

"Constant negative thinking can actually lead to long term mental illness. Learn good mental habits."- u/Patches67

25. You are responsible for your own well-being

"No matter what kind of hand you get dealt in life, it is your responsibility to overcome. No one owes you anything. Being resentful, entitled or angry about it only hurts you and serves to hold you back."-u/FracasBedlam

26. Nothing is permanent, not even bad times

"It's never as bad as it seems. This time next year you probably will not remember being upset."- u/innerchillens

27. A good mentor is invaluable

"Find a good mentor. High school freshman: try to make a friend that is a junior or senior with similar aspirations as you. Knowing who the good teachers are and what courses to avoid or pursue is invaluable. Same thing for college: try to make friends with someone older than you or you have a really kind professor who genuinely seems to care about you as a student and wants you to do well in whatever your profession. Talk with them, ask advice. A good mentor is always happy to make time for you or set aside time in the near future to help you out. Specifically for me: I wish I was able to talk to someone going through medical school. Get to know why people are so burned out and whether I should have pursued medicine as a career. Things might have been different."- u/knotintime

28. Mental self-care is real

"Depression and anxiety are real problems with real solutions, not things you 'just need to get over.'"- u/icouldeatthemoon

29. Emotional intelligence enhances life

"Work on Emotional Intelligence, it will make life’s ups and downs easier. You can deal with bullies, jerks, dysfunctional family, partners, work, etc so much better. You will excel faster than those around you."- u/Cassius_O

30. Surround yourself with good people

"Put effort in building a strong social circle and learn how to ask for help. Plus, learn to actually ask for help before you get at the point where you are not able to ask for help anymore. On a less melodramatic note, keep a journal. I never did it and I've probably forgotten so many things already, plus it is comforting to see how much you've changed over the years. Reading about all the stuff you worried about, that just worked out in the end."- u/Corvidiosyncratic

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