When you're young, it's easy to dismiss the advice from older people as irrelevant (and, depending on how it's given to you, kinda rude). Nobody wants to hear their Great Aunt Joyce talk about how "kids these days just don't want to work" every Thanksgiving. However, there's definitely something to be said for the fact that usually, older people have experience that younger people simply don't, and their advice might actually be useful in some cases.
Now, obviously, that doesn't mean that you should listen to everything an older person tells you, but Redditor u/h-gotfred unearthed some pretty fantastic advice when they posed this question older Redditors in an AskReddit post: What's something you genuinely believe young people haven't realized yet, but could enrich their lives or positively impact their outlook on life?
Here are some of the best answers they provided.
Marriage/relationships should be fun, and happy. Life is hard, things get tough. Find someone that makes the tough times easier, not harder. — Inevitable-Mine6466
Not everything that you disagree with deserves an argument. Pick your battles and let trivial things slide. – hail2theKingbabee
Take a genuine interest in what other people have to say, ask them follow-up questions about their passions in life. Don’t just talk about yourself, or wait for your turn to talk. That’s how you have a conversation, and build a relationship. – MayIServeYouWell
Everything you post on the internet is there forever and could come back one day to haunt you. Be careful what you post. – lylisdad
If you die, your employer will have your job posted before you are buried. Remember that one when making work/life choices. – Justin9314
Unless you don't mind hearing EEEEEEEEEEEE like all the time day and night, use hearing protection in loud situations. Tinnitus is a b----. – revnhoj
Just be kind. Everyone is struggling to survive and find meaning — all creatures — people and other animals. Be nice. Be considerate. – Irish8th
If you think you know what somebody else is thinking, you don't. That's just projection. – Lacriphage
Wear sunscreen. – nilecrane
Learn to eat well and exercise, or you will pay for it later. You don't have to be a health nut, but you have to move and you can't sustain yourself on junk food and live a good life. – tdellaringa
Every skill takes determined practice to master. I see my young friends/relatives try, and give up on so many things because "they weren't very good at it." If you keep doing that, you'll never be very good at anything. – EarhornJones
Putting things off to do when you're older very likely means you'll end up not doing it.
You young people have no idea how quickly your strength and stamina desert you as you age. In my thirties and forties, I used to happily do multiple-day hiking trips of 10-hour-a-day hikes up and over mountains. Now in my fifties, the last serious hike I did (which was only 6 hours), I could barely move the next day. My leg muscles were jelly.
One of my best holidays was a month-long hike around Switzerland, done 15 years ago. As much as I would love to do that again, I have to face the fact I likely don't have it in me anymore. But at least I did get to do it. Had I put it off to "when I retire" I would never have done it.
Also, you may well never get the opportunity to do them. About 10 years ago when I first moved to Perth, WA, a co-worker's friend was due to retire. A friend and his wife had never been overseas. As his retirement drew close he and wifey started planning a big post-retirement, 12-month European trip as their first-ever overseas adventure. A week after he retired, he dropped dead from a heart attack. – Lingering_Dorkness
Debt can really ruin your life. If you want to take on a lot of it, make sure you have a good plan and run it by a lot of smart people first. – vanityklaw
Fear of the future makes you ignore the present, causing you to make errors now that you will regret doing in the past. If you pay attention to the right now (mindfulness, basically), you don't make as many errors, hence you regret the past less, and no longer fear the future. Break the cycle. – scrubjays
Reading for pleasure. – invalidpassword
Two things I will be eternally grateful to my grandfather for instilling in me:
1) Failure is not an end state unless it is where you choose to stop. He loved to quote that line by Churchill whenever something didn't work out for me, Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.
2) Honesty is the most powerful tool you can use to define yourself. Admit your mistake, frankly and honestly. The truth always comes out in the end no matter how big or small and it doesn't get better with age. You can give back something you steal, you can help those you hurt but once they brand you a liar, its all you will ever be. – iskandar-
Time. You think you have plenty of time when you’re young, but you actually don’t. All of us 50+ were your age once, and it feels like yesterday. Don’t wait to do the things you dream of, or put things off for when you get older. That just leads to regret and “what could have been” reflection as you age. – whatitbeitis
You don’t feel 50 when you’re 50. I feel 27 or 28. Change happens slowly so you don’t always notice it. – Whatever-ItsFine
Stop thinking your life is about being the most productive person you can be. Find interesting hobbies that make you feel good and are good for you. Your soul deserves to experience some of your own dreams, don't waste all of your time working towards the dreams of your company's owners. – Boxing_day_maddness
Nobody else ever thinks about the things you did that you think were embarrassing or cringeworthy. You are not important to them. The only one who remembers those moments is you, and you shouldn’t let them define you to yourself. – Rune_Council
If there was abuse in your childhood of any kind and no one helped, get help now. If you can’t afford therapy use online resources. They’re not the best, but still helpful. Don’t have your own children until you’re sure you won’t repeat the cycle. – JonesinforJonesey
Inheritance is not a retirement plan. – CafeTerraceAtNoon
Work hard at your job but also keep your ear open to other fields or jobs that can offer a better future. Success takes time, lots of time. Make sure that you see a path to a comfortable future. – PlantationCane