25 People Over 55 Share Their Best Advice For Anyone Under 25

Published 5 months ago

One simple fact of life is that we live and we learn. Mistakes are just an experience that we need to have so that we won’t do it again. Until eventually we think we know it all, even though there are certainly things that we simply have not dealt with yet.  The best way to arm yourself in that situation is to speak to people who have lived a little bit longer and therefore may know a little bit more about what to expect. 

This was one Redditor’s thought when they inquired online, “People who are 55+ and happy with your life, what is your best advice to those under 25?” Netizens responded with their personal opinions and dropped pearls of wisdom in the comments from which we’ve shared the most insightful below. Because while experience is the best teacher, there is something to be said for learning from other people’s experiences too. 

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#1 Don’t let work become your life. Your work will not care for you when you’re sick, nor love you when you need care, nor hold your hand when you’re dying.

Image source: Content_Structure118, energepic.com / pexels (not the actual photo)

#2 Experiences can never be taken from you. Get out and see the world, try new things, go to that concert or baseball game or museum or show.

Image source: 02K30C1, Sandra Martins / unsplash (not the actual photo)

#3 A job is just a way to get currency into your bank account, don’t confuse it with who you are. Also, no matter what anyone ever tells you: your work is NOT a family. All but one or two people at your current job will drop you as an acquaintance as soon as you leave for another opportunity. Additionally, never ever compromise yourself or do any illegal s**t for your boss – ever.

Image source: jthekoker, Andrea Piacquadio / pexels (not the actual photo)

#4 Don’t give a damn what anybody thinks of you.

Image source: BlueGreen_1956, Kitera Dent / unsplash (not the actual photo)

#5 Avoid crushing debt, especially credit cards.

Image source: excitom

#6 Live within your means. Use debt carefully. Start saving for retirement early as the others say. Focus on good relationships.

Image source: davetheotter, Mikhail Nilov / pexels (not the actual photo)

#7 Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good. Sometimes you need to be happy with what you have, it won’t get better but it could definitely get worse.

Image source: londoner4life, Alena Shekhovtcova / pexels (not the actual photo)

#8 Don’t let your world get small. Travel, have a variety of interests, spend time with family and friends.

Image source: Kmsjvs, Dominika Roseclay / pexels (not the actual photo)

#9 Exercise, limit alcohol and find a partner with a good sense of humor.

Image source: Oceanliving32, Miriam Alonso / pexels (not the actual photo)

#10 Treat your body well now, because you will either reap the rewards of it or suffer the consequences of it later. Enjoy your life and explore your hobbies and make your friends. Take this time to grow and heal and become the best version of yourself that you can.

Image source: Harriethair, Dane Wetton /unsplash (not the actual photo)

#11 Chase what makes you happy, not what you feel obligated to do to please parents (for example). Don’t compare yourself to others: it will suck the joy from your life.

Image source: DogDrools, Andrea Piacquadio / pexels (not the actual photo)

#12 If you are in an unhappy relationship, get out of it, and enjoy single life.

Image source: PresentationLimp890, Keira Burton / pexels (not the actual photo)

#13 Wear hearing protection. Tinnitus is a b***h

Image source: revnhoj, Mark Paton / unsplash (not the actual photo)

#14 Stay curious. Take time to notice when something or someone is bringing you joy. Simply being happy about something isn’t frivolous. Beware of pessimism masquerading as wisdom. I like the Kurt Vonnegut advice: “And I urge you to please notice when you are happy, and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, ‘If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.’”

Image source: MhojoRisin, Guilherme Almeida / pexels (not the actual photo)

#15 I am 66 y.o. Having a spouse you adore helps you overcome the c**p life throws at you.

Image source: dumbo61

#16 Eat fairly healthy and get daily exercise. I’m now 72 and still run 40 miles/week. However, I have friends 10 years younger than I who can hardly walk to the mailbox. Getting old isn’t bad at all if you can still get out, travel, go out to eat, play catch with your grandson, enjoy life. But, you have to be healthy enough to do all those things. It’s a lot easier to get into shape and keep it that way when you are in your 20s. If you wait, you may never start.

Image source: Silly-Resist8306, Mücahit inci /pexels (not the actual photo)

#17 Learn how to save and invest money now. If you learn how to do this, 55 year old you will be forever grateful to 25 year old you.

Image source: Alembicbass4, Alexander Mils / unsplash (not the actual photo)

#18 As someone not quite 55, my main advice to someone looking to get advice from an older person is this-

The world we grew up in changed much slower than the one you’re growing up in, so most of the advice you read here will be from that perspective. What was sage advice for us may not be sage advice for you. How much the world changed between 1990-2000 is likely much less dramatic than the change we’ll see between 2025-2035.

My personal advice? Keep an open mind, be patient (which is *not* the same as allowing yourself to be subjected to abuse), and be thoughtful about your choices (but don’t allow your thinking to keep you from making choices- we often never know how a choice will turn out until long *after* we’ve made it).

Image source: Royal-Procedure6491

#19 This is the hardest lesson to master. Don’t “give” people the power over your happiness.

Image source: kdubstep, fauxels / pexels (not the actual photo)


Image source: joemondo, Priscilla Du Preez ?? / unsplash (not the actual photo)

1. Act in good faith. This is fantastically underestimated. Cultivate curiosity, eschew judgment.
2. Tend to your relationships, even when – and especially when – you don’t feel like it.
3. Prioritize being your best, physically, emotionally and mentally.

#21 Wear sunscreen!!!

Image source: CabinetFluffy8576, Mikhail Nilov / pexels (not the actual photo)

#22 The two biggest decisions are your career and your partner. Your career will probably change and it’s not too bad to change but changing your partner can be a nightmare. My best advice is to be careful who you settle down with. The people I know my age that are unhappy are unhappy because they picked a bad partner.

Image source: Inevitable-Staff9567, Anthony Tran / unsplash (not the actual photo)

#23 Let the little s**t go. Don’t dwell on what you can’t control. Clean out and toss c**p you don’t use every 2 years.

Image source: Whis65, cottonbro studio / pexels (not the actual photo)

#24 You can’t control people, places, or things.

Image source: LongjumpingAd3733, Kasuma / pexels (not the actual photo)

#25 Share your skills or talents freely with others and ask them to do the same for you. Knowledge is power.

Image source: Morning7211, Mikhail Nilov / pexels (not the actual photo)

Shanilou Perera

Shanilou has always loved reading and learning about the world we live in. While she enjoys fictional books and stories just as much, since childhood she was especially fascinated by encyclopaedias and strangely enough, self-help books. As a kid, she spent most of her time consuming as much knowledge as she could get her hands on and could always be found at the library. Now, she still enjoys finding out about all the amazing things that surround us in our day-to-day lives and is blessed to be able to write about them to share with the whole world as a profession.

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