Life is a continuous learning experience. Throughout our lives we keep rising and falling, picking up important lessons along the way. Some of these lessons come from experience, yet there are others that we learn watching others or reading in books for example. No matter how much we learn from the books there is a significant difference between practical and theoretical experience.
Furthermore, there are many life lessons that we simply cannot learn until we face certain situations in our life. Most people would say that there are some lessons that come too late, catching us off-guard and unprepared. The following list unveils some of the most important lessons in life that people learn the hard way.
Often when we’re young, just beginning our adult journey we feel as though we have to do everything at once. We need to decide everything, plan out our lives, experience everything, get to the top, find true love, figure out our life’s purpose, and do it all at the same time. But rushing full-speed ahead towards anything is a one-way ticket to burnout and a good way to miss your life as it passes you by.
Slow down—don’t rush into things. Let your life unfold. Wait a bit to see where it takes you, and take time to weigh your options. Enjoy every bite of food, take time to look around you, let the other person finish their side of the conversation. Allow yourself time to think, to mull a bit.
You Don’t Always Get What You Want
Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans. No matter how carefully you plan and how hard you work, sometimes things just don’t work out the way you want them to, and that’s okay.
We have all of these expectations; predetermined visions of what our “ideal” life will look like, but all too often, that’s not the reality of the life we end up with. Sometimes our dreams fail and sometimes we just change our minds mid-course. Sometimes we have to flop to find the right course and sometimes we just have to try a few things before we find the right direction.
Walk Your Own Path
People like to judge other people. This peer pressure can make you stray from the path you started to carve for your future. Don’t mind other people’s aspirations, don’t ever let someone else’s goals and dreams influence your vision of life. It’s your path and you decide where it takes you and how long it takes you to see it through.
It is important to march to the beat of your own drummer and avoid that pressure to conform to some popular norm. You are your own special person and you should follow your own path and reach your own dreams. Do not let others dictate the way you live your life.
Your Health is Your Most Valuable Asset
Health is an invaluable treasure—always appreciate, nurture, and protect it. Good health is often wasted on the young before they have a chance to appreciate it for what it’s worth. We tend to take our good health for granted, because it’s just there. We don’t have to worry about it, so we don’t really pay attention to it, until we have to.
The best way to keep yourself healthy is by prevention. Smoking, drinking, vaping, drugs, partying, overeating, fast food and too much stress all cause strain on our bodies. While you may be able to do these things in your 20s with little ill effect, you are building a debt that your health will pay for when you get older. Start being health conscious as early as you can. Eat right. Get regular doctor checkups. Follow healthy habits. All of this will help prevent future health problems.
Forgiveness is a Gift You Give to Yourself
Forgiveness is a gift you give to yourself, to be at peace, to be happy and to be able to sleep at night. You don’t forgive because you are weak, but because you are strong enough to realize that only by giving up on resentment will you be happy.
Holding on to your anger, jealousy, grudges, contempt, etc. comes under the roof of negativity. This negativity is one big risk that you should avoid at all costs in life. Don’t carry them in your life. The best solution is to forgive. Forgiveness is one of the powerful lessons that we learn in life. If you hold on to poisonous thoughts like hate, anger, and resentment toward someone, you will end up poisoning yourself more than you poison the other person, and hence, you will be very unhappy.
Don’t Take Anything for Granted
Nothing in your life is not guaranteed to be there tomorrow, including those you love. This is a hard life lesson to learn, but it may be the most important of all:
Life can change in an instant.
We often don’t appreciate what we have until it’s gone: that includes your health, your family and friends, your job, the money you have or think you will have tomorrow.
When you’re young, it seems that your parents will always be there, but they won’t. You think you have plenty of time to get back in touch with your old friends or spend time with new ones, but you don’t. You have the money to spend, or you think you’ll have it next month, but you might not.
Make sure you appreciate what you have, while you still have it.