Life proves to be an unyielding instructor, and as we navigate our twenties and beyond, we inevitably confront challenges that sculpt our perspectives and forge our characters. In a recent discussion on Reddit, a user presented a thought-provoking inquiry: “Those aged 25 and above, what’s the toughest life lesson you’ve experienced?”
The ensuing responses formed a rich tapestry of experiences, each contribution weaving valuable insights derived from personal trials and tribulations. Explore some of these intriguing narratives below.
My grandfather told me when I was younger, “some people are just born evil and sometimes it’s impossible to see them coming.” He was right.
It *looks* like other people are blessed with motivation and self-discipline and make stuff happen. If you sit and around long enough, the angel of self-discipline will float to you and bless you with the desire to do healthy, productive stuff that will benefit you in the short, mid, long term.
You have to get off your couch and do what you don’t feel like doing right now. That’s the lesson I had to learn.
No one is going to save you. You have to save yourself.
That life can take a loved one at any time so cherish those you love, make time for family and friends, and tell people you love them often.
You can do everything right and still fail.
If your employer is doing something illegal or unethical and you decide to confront them about it, for f***s sake, do it in a way that all communication will leave a paper trail.
Many people in “leadership” positions are anything but leaders.
You generally have to first make a mistake in order to avoid making it in the future.
You can be really happy one moment, and then super sad in the next. It’s important to appreciate each of these things for what they are. You won’t be happy forever, you won’t be sad forever.
S**t can go south in a literal heartbeat.
Do not lie to your significant other. Have hard conversations and trust them enough to be able to have them with you. Give them the chance and don’t be afraid/avoid doing it it in fear of rejection or judgement. I learned that one the hard way unfortunately.
Living life costs so much money.
That your co workers/managers are not your friends. They are nice to you in person, but when you’re not there they talk about you. This is coming from experience.
I should have tried harder in college and worked with a goal in mind.
You can’t make someone love you by giving them more of what they already don’t appreciate.
…still chewing on this one.
Sometimes the problem is you.
You can have a loving family, great friends, and financial security but still feel isolated and empty.
Your health can evaporate quickly
There are some truly f****d up people that live and breathe to f**k over other people.
This is for the people pleasers like myself.
You can bend over backwards for everyone, be a doormat, make it your life goal to avoid confrontation, and you’re still going to end up being the super villain in someone’s story by the time you hit 30.
You’re writing your own story. Set your boundaries and realize no girlguy, vice, or amount of money is worth compromising them.
People don’t really attract like-minded people. If you’re a normal person, you think along the lines of the golden rule. But I’ll tell you this… there’s gonna be *someone* you consider to be a friend who’s going to not only disappoint you, they’re going to hurt you, and they’re not even going to value your friendship enough that they care to rectify that. Hell, they might even enjoy it.
I’m 35 and the harshest lesson I learned is that life sucks sometimes. You think you have everything figured out, but then something bad happens and throws your whole plan off track. It’s important to be flexible and not take things for granted cause s**t can hit the fan real quick, yo.
Don’t drive when you are sleepy.
I feel asleep driving after working night shift.
I was in a coma for two weeks and partially paralyzed.
After four months in the hospital I was medically retired from the US Army.
Before the accident, I was in great shape and I was running about ten miles per day training for a race.
I have not been able to run since the accident.
Lesson: Don’t drive when you are sleepy, you could die or hurt someone else.
You’re going to have regrets. Things you didn’t do as well as you could have. Things you didn’t earn. Things you did that you didn’t mean to do. Things you didn’t do that you wanted to do.
Don’t waste the present dwelling on the past. Use the regrets as lessons to change your decisions.
Take care of your f*****g teeth. Nobody told me that fillings eventually have to be replaced and you’ll be paying for that cavity again in 10 years, and then again after another 10 years, and so on.
Edit: this is not the harshest life lesson I’ve ever learned but it is potentially the most expensive.