9 hard truths most people learn too late in life

Life is full of lessons. Some we learn early on, others take a little more time and often come with a fair share of regret. These are those hard truths that, for most of us, we only grasp too late in life.

Each of us has our own unique journey, but there are certain realities that many of us encounter only when we’ve already made our share of mistakes.

This article will delve into 9 hard truths that most people learn too late in life. It’s not going to be sugar-coated, but it’s honest and hopefully, it might just help you navigate life a little better.

1) Life isn’t fair

It’s a bitter pill to swallow, but one of the hardest truths in life is that it’s not always fair.

We grow up believing in karma, that good deeds are rewarded and bad deeds are punished. But as we age, we start to see that things don’t always shake out this way.

Good people sometimes face hardship while those who behave badly may seem to have it easy. It’s a tough reality to accept and it can leave us feeling frustrated and disillusioned.

But acknowledging this truth can also be empowering. It means understanding that life doesn’t owe us anything and that regardless of the circumstances, we have the ability to choose our response, our attitude and our actions.

Life might not be fair, but it’s still beautiful with all its ups and downs.

2) Time is the most valuable resource

Here’s a truth that hit me hard: time is the most valuable resource we have and once it’s gone, we can’t get it back.

I remember when I was younger, I thought I had all the time in the world. I’d spend hours, even days, procrastinating or wasting time on things that didn’t really matter. Looking back now, I wish I had used that time more wisely.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized just how precious every moment is. Whether it’s spent with loved ones, pursuing a passion, or even just taking a moment for myself, every second counts.

The lesson here? Don’t take time for granted. Use it wisely because once it’s gone, it’s gone for good.

3) Failure is a part of success

Believe it or not, most successful people have a long list of failures behind them. The likes of Thomas Edison, the inventor of the light bulb, failed a whopping 1,000 times before he finally found success.

We often view failure as a dead end, as something to be avoided at all costs. But in reality, failure is just a stepping stone on the path to success. It’s through our failures that we learn the most valuable lessons and acquire the skills needed to succeed.

When you face failure, don’t beat yourself up. Instead, see it as a chance to learn and grow. It’s not the end of the road; it’s just a detour on your journey to success.

4) You can’t please everyone

No matter how hard you try or how much you want to, the simple fact is you can’t please everyone.

In our quest to be liked and accepted, we often bend over backwards trying to accommodate everyone’s wishes and expectations. But the truth is, it’s impossible to make everyone happy all the time.

Some people will disagree with you, some will criticize, and some just won’t like you no matter what. And that’s okay.

The key is to stay true to yourself, respect others’ opinions but don’t let them dictate your life. Your self-worth should never hinge on the approval of others. Accept this truth and you’ll find a lot more peace and happiness in life.

5) Change is inevitable

One of the most consistent aspects of life is change. As much as we might crave stability and predictability, life has a way of throwing curveballs at us.

Jobs come and go, relationships evolve, health can fluctuate, and personal beliefs can shift. Even our own personalities and desires can change over time.

While this constant state of flux can be unsettling, it’s also a source of growth. Change pushes us out of our comfort zones, prompting us to adapt and evolve.

Rather than resisting change, we should learn to embrace it. After all, it’s the only constant in life.

6) It’s never too late to start

There’s a beautiful truth that many of us overlook: it’s never too late to start anew.

Perhaps you’ve always wanted to pursue a certain career, learn a new skill or even mend a broken relationship. But fear, doubt or the belief that you’ve missed your chance keeps holding you back.

The reality is, there’s no expiry date on chasing your dreams or making amends. We are not defined by our past mistakes or missed opportunities. We have the ability to make a fresh start, every single day.

If there’s something you’ve been longing to do, don’t let the fear of being ‘too late’ stop you. The best time to start was yesterday. The next best time is now.

7) Your mental health is as important as your physical health

I’ve always been active and conscious about maintaining my physical health. But for years, I overlooked my mental well-being. I believed that if I was physically healthy, then I was in good shape.

It wasn’t until I experienced a bout of severe anxiety that I understood the importance of mental health. It was a wake-up call for me. Despite being physically fit, I was struggling and it affected every aspect of my life.

Just like we need to exercise and eat well to keep our bodies healthy, we need to take care of our minds too. Whether it’s through mindfulness practices, therapy, or simply taking the time to relax and rejuvenate, mental health should never be neglected.

Your mind deserves the same care and attention as your body. Remember, it’s okay not to be okay and it’s more than okay to ask for help.

8) Forgiveness is a gift to yourself

Holding onto anger, resentment, or hurt only harms you more than the person who hurt you. It’s like drinking poison and expecting the other person to get sick.

Forgiveness, however, is a powerful tool for healing. It allows us to let go of the pain and move forward. It doesn’t mean forgetting or condoning what happened, but rather choosing to free ourselves from the burden of resentment.

Truth is, forgiveness isn’t about the other person; it’s about you. It’s about giving yourself the gift of peace and freedom from past hurts. It might not be easy, but it’s definitely worth it.

9) Happiness is a choice

This might be the hardest truth to grasp, but also the most important one: happiness is a choice. It’s not a destination or a reward for achieving certain goals, it’s a decision we make every day.

We often think, “I’ll be happy when I get that promotion,” or “I’ll be happy when I find the perfect partner.” But the truth is, happiness comes from within. It’s about appreciating what you have, finding joy in the little things, and choosing positivity even in difficult times.

Don’t put your happiness on hold for future events. Choose to be happy now, because now is all we truly have.

Final thoughts: Embrace the journey

Life is a journey filled with twists and turns, ups and downs, joy and sorrow. It’s a beautiful mess that teaches us, shapes us, and ultimately makes us who we are.

These hard truths we’ve discussed aren’t here to discourage you or cast a shadow over your life. On the contrary, they’re here to remind you that life is a continuous learning experience.

Remember that it’s okay to make mistakes, it’s okay to fail, it’s okay to not have everything figured out. Each experience, each decision, each moment is an opportunity to grow and learn.

As Benjamin Franklin once said, “Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement, and success have no meaning.”

So as you navigate through life, keep these truths in mind. Embrace them and let them guide you towards a more fulfilling, compassionate and self-aware existence.

After all, life isn’t about avoiding the storm; it’s about learning to dance in the rain.

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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the editor of Ideapod and founder of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 6 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. If you to want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter or Facebook.

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