The sooner you accept life lessons as bullet-proof truth, the better off you’ll be. However, older generations can attest that some people must take their lumps and learn lessons the hard way. These wise, experienced commentators are glad they learned precious life lessons late rather than not at all.
1. You Can’t Save Those Who Don’t Want Saving
When someone hits rock bottom and comes to you for help, assisting them as best you can is admirable. However, trying to save someone unready to save themselves is a fool’s errand.
Whether the struggle arises from a substance, unhealthy interpersonal dynamics, or other sources of conflict, you must protect yourself from others’ destructive behaviors.
2. Some Friendships Fade, and That Is OK
You should not feel guilty about letting a friendship fade into the ether. It’s natural for your friend group to evolve and even shrink as time passes.
Remember Chad, the party animal you used to light up the town with in college? You don’t need Chad around your toddlers.
3. The Word Gullible Exists for a Reason
Projecting your good nature and best intentions on other people can prove disastrous. Whether it’s assuming that the scammer really wants to give you a no-strings-attached cash advance or that someone who walks, talks, and breathes just like you could be a dangerous predator, naivete can be costly in more ways than one.
4. Your Work Group Isn’t Your Friend Group
Few mistakes can be as costly as blurring the line between co-worker and friend. Anything you can say in the breakroom can and will be used against you in the court of your human resources department.
5. Believe People When They Show Their Character
The saying ‘When someone shows you who they are, believe them’ is well-worn for a good reason. Take mental notes if someone is willing to steal from you, disregard your psychological well-being, or act in other ways that suggest poor character.
While you can’t change people, you can remove toxic ones from your contacts list.
6. Keep Spare Clothing in Your Car
This tip seems random, but anyone who has had a dollop of ketchup fall menacingly from a double cheeseburger onto their khaki shorts or fresh-white polo knows the priceless value of spare clothing in the trunk.
7. Wear Sunscreen
Older generations note the short-term consequences (sunburns and blisters) and long-term consequences (melanoma) of scrimping on the SPF. One common and critical piece of advice: Remember your neck.
That beautiful bronze tan becomes worrisome, with freckles, wrinkles, and headaches in time.
8. Budget Aggressively
If budgeting $350 monthly for groceries seems aggressive, try to spend $300 monthly on your groceries. If you need $100 monthly for Amazon purchases, try to get by on $75. The same logic applies to both essential and non-essential purchases.
Future you, with their feet in the sand behind their fully paid condo in Florida, will thank you for budgeting aggressively.
9. Spouses Come with In-Laws
You don’t have to be best friends with your mother-in-law. Even a ne’er-do-well sibling isn’t a deal breaker when considering tying the knot with the person you love. However, constant familial drama or toxic family dynamics beyond repair could prove a massive headache.
When weighing the pros and cons of your relationship, consider the in-laws.
10. Nothing Is Guaranteed
Your job won’t last forever. Your loved ones won’t be around forever. The world will change in ways you can never predict.
The only certainty in life is uncertainty. Live conservatively, save your money, and come to terms with the certainty that chaos reigns.
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