Individuals aged 40 and over candidly express their biggest regrets in life, offering valuable lessons for others.
As we grow older, our priorities change and so do the challenges that we face. Every age has its own set of problems that we deal with even when we do not have the proper solution. Sometimes we come out of tricky situations and other times we just scrape by. Either way, individuals have experiences that teach them a lot of things over the years and it causes them to feel regretful about things they did when they were younger. Reddit user u/unworldlyyy asked the community, "People over 40, what's the one thing that you regret the most in your younger years?" Here are 10 of the most eye-opening answers that people had to share.
Not investing and not appreciating people who love you. u/PermissionCrazy8452. To be fair, it can take a bit to figure out how to invest properly. Society makes lots of claims and arguments about the best way to invest, and better investment vehicles seem to come along every twenty years. u/ConstructionLarge615. I’m only 23 and my mum died just over a month ago. Make sure you appreciate your parents even if you’re still young because they can always be taken away from you too soon. u/Immediate_Cry2712
Not enjoying it more, didn't realize how fast my younger years would pass. u/mugshade1. I drank a lot until I turned 35. I thought this was "enjoying" life. Going out all the time with friends, getting blasted, and then saving enough money to do it for a week in a different zip code (vacation). Now that I'm sober, I can actually understand what "enjoying" life means. I can enjoy the actual activity we're doing, rather than just enjoying the getting drunk part of said activity. I hope that makes sense. u/username0304
Speaking too quick not listening and thinking more. u/Brave_Bluebird5042. I have the opposite problem. I was always told to shut up and think before speaking. Unfortunately, now I often hesitate to give my opinion or response until I’ve fully thought it through, which can take a while depending on the topic. This leads to awkward pauses in conversation and people questioning whether I’m telling the truth or just telling them what they want to hear. I’ve found that just saying what comes to mind and correcting myself if I need to later leads to much better conversation. u/SparksAndSpyro
Caring too much about what others thought of me. Reddit. HOME RUN!! I have a great memory and can go back to a lot of incidents in my youth where people made me feel bad. I realize now that should have been stronger and more confident in myself. On the upside, I’ve raised my son to be the most confident person in the world and it’s an impressive sight to behold. He’s my do-over and I’m so proud. u/AenonTown13
Deferring too readily to the judgment of others. I had the naive belief that other people had my best interest at heart. Speak up for yourself. Defend your own decisions. No one is out there waiting to make you a star. u/Gorf_the_Magnificent. This is a big one. Letting go of toxic friendships/relationships is tough, but healthy and better for your mental health. u/TheVirginVibes. So many people lose the greatest love of their lives because they’re worried they won’t have the right look or status according to people who won’t even come to their funeral. u/Scouty2010
Stretching and maintaining muscle mass. When I had kids I stopped both and it took a decade to get that back. Treat your body well. Something happens around 38 and the better shape you are in the better your 40’s and after will feel. u/katelynn2380210. This is kinda good to hear and strengthens my resolve. I'm 38 and terribly out of shape, but for the last two months, I've vowed to fix my body once and for all. My goal at the moment is to lose enough weight to enjoy the season passes to a theme park with my son in the summer. Currently, I'm down about 25lbs and hit a milestone this week! u/KinderEggLaunderer
Not setting firm boundaries with people. Givers have to set limits because takers have no limits. u/log899. I learned this too late with my MIL. Once I finally stood up to her and started enforcing boundaries, she had a total meltdown, because she was used to always being able to steamroll her way through her kids' (and their spouses') lives. I let her get away with it for WAY too long. u/Competitive_Cat_8468
Spending too much time worrying about love and not enough time concentrating on happiness. u/UsesCommonSense. Absolutely. I got married young to someone I loved who was abusive. It took me a long time to leave. Now, I'm actually learning how to be happy. u/newenglandredshirt. This!! Spent the last 20 years trying to make my spouse happy, and now I don't even know what makes me happy. Don't lose yourself by giving it all to someone else. u/Whiskey4myCookies. There’s an enormous correlation between the two (love and happiness). The really hard-to-stomach part is how rare true love actually is, how few are destined to actually get it and how much worse life is without it. u/AnotherRunningBack
Seems so cliche but I did not wear enough sunscreen. I used to do the whole layout with baby oil so I could get a "savage" tan. How stupid. Now my face looks like a topographic map of California. Wear sunscreen kids! u/Catalyst886. This is where my acne saved me. I was on medication for acne in my teens that made me photosensitive, so I had to avoid the sun while my peers were getting nice deep tans. I got off the meds in my 20s but still had to wash my face twice a day to avoid breakouts. Because that dried out my skin I had to use a moisturizer that happened to have an SPF of 30. Fast forward 20 years and my skin looks very good for my age. u/Lostboy_30
I should've started traveling much earlier in life, while I was still young & fit. That and not taking better care of my teeth. u/thrawaythraway_now. People tell young people to travel more but they don’t explain what this means—traveling is a learned skill. If you’re young, pick a random city in the world you’re interested in, stay in an Airbnb or hostel or hotel in the city center, pick 3-5 activities to do: museums, theme parks, restaurants, hikes, lakes/rivers/beaches, sports. Walk around as much as possible, ask the locals for recommendations, invite them to lunch or dinner if they seem friendly, or go to a local club or bar if that’s your scene. u/omniron