40 is an age I somehow always aspired to. If you ever asked me my favourite age, I would have said 40! It symbolized wisdom and grace. Now that I have turned 40, I realize it also comes with its journey and experience. Here are 40 life lessons at 40 I have picked on the way.
They have helped me in life and I hope they are useful for you also:
40 Life Lessons at 40
- Forgive people but first forgive yourself. Sometimes that’s the most difficult forgiveness we grant to anyone.
- When faced with a difficult choice, pick the one that makes you feel like a bigger person, not a smaller one. Your heart will always tell you.
- We are the product of our company. Choose wisely.
- As we grow older, people find it easier to be there at times of grief for each other than at times of joy. To be happy for someone else requires bravery that not everyone has.
- When you say goodbye, take in the smells. That’s how I still remember some of my most treasured memories.
- Whatever you learn, never goes to waste. Don’t stop learning.
- You can never make new old friends. Value them.
- When something bad happens, take it up a notch in your mind and think how can this go worse? You will than be thankful and able to handle the existing circumstances.
- Read books to live a thousand lives, have multiple perspectives and to be a better writer.
- The best response to opposition and hatred is to smile and carry on. What you pay attention to grows. Ignore the haters. Face the positivity.
- Most (not all) terrible experiences make for really funny stories later.
- Before you ask a question, investigate and research it yourself. Don’t use others, where google might do. Respect other people’s time
- A person’s response to a situation is a reflection of their inner self.
- Don’t mix charity and transactions. Help people without expecting any returns.
- Counselling is the best gift you can give yourself. All of us have knots that need untying.
- Try and resolve conflicts face to face. Never send a text when angry or upset.
- Always start a conversation on a positive note.
- If you love someone, let them sleep. P.S. Naps are the best things ever.
- All battles are not worth fighting.
- Don’t form friendships over gossip. Those are quick to form and then quicker to turn toxic.
- Let your spouse have healthy and independent relationships with his friends and family. You and your spouse are separate wholes.
- Your children are not an extension of you or a reflection of you. You give them your best and then let me fly. Parenting is a process of gradual letting go.
- Everyone who comes in our life brings value to it: some give us love, others wisdom.
- Always keep a balance: in relationships, indulgences and preferences.
- The person you spend the most time with in your life is you. Take care of your body and soul.
- Learn to say an affirmative “no” by accepting “no” from others gracefully.
- How you react to situations defines 90% of your life. Take a deep breath and avoid knee jerk reactions.
- Don’t make promises when you’re emotional: either too happy or extremely sad.
- We always have a choice. In every situation. If we tend not to take it, that’s a choice in itself.
- Sasta roye baar baar, mehenga roye eik baar. One of my dadi’s favorite verse and I live by it now.
- Sometimes not doing anything is the best course of action.
- Give relationships and people time. Think and assume the best. Watch your patience bloom.
- Treat others how you expect to be treated. Be the change you want to see in the world.
- Everyone has something good in them, compliment that and watch it grow.
- Always look for things to be grateful for. There is always a positive in every situation.
- You do not need anyone’s permission to be happy and content. Always ask yourself “what’s stopping me?”
- If you feel afraid, ashamed or guilty for unsure reasons, check yourself: are you thinking like an 8-year-old version of yourself or as an adult that you are? Say goodbye to the scared child afraid of being abandoned and act like the independent adult that you are. Refer to point 15.
- Assume the positive in conversations, relationships and people’s actions.
- When all else fails, dress up and have some chai.
- Family first. Always.
These life lessons at 40 have been picked over years from multiple experiences, interactions and stories.
What are some of your favourite life lessons?