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5 life lessons every successful 30-something learnt in their 20s

Young men think they know it all – but they soon learn that life isn’t quite as easy as they made it out to be. Realising that your perceptions were skewed and accepting that you make mistakes is essential for success. These five life lessons can turn stuttering twenties into successful thirties.


Society is made up from a wide range of groups comprising of social classes, racial demographics and eclectic subcultures. The wide spectrum can cause mistrust between groups and discourse of racism, classism and discrimination is frequent. However, all successful people in their 30s and beyond have realised; it’s not where you come from but rather, where you are going that counts. People that allow their background to inform their success are misguided – whether they come from prosperity or poverty.


‘I’m going to have ‘fun’ in my early 20s, get a steady girlfriend in my mid-twenties, get married in my late twenties and have children by thirty.’ Believe it or not, this sort of hogwash is actually what people base their lives around. But who created such stringent rules for planning a life? Get married in your early twenties, be a lothario in your fifties – do what you want to do, don’t let the status quo determine how you want to lead your one shot at life on earth.


Any successful 30-something will have learnt that making mistakes is part of life and that, far from being ashamed of them, you should use them to ensure that your performance improves. Make a mistake once and learn from it – that’s the essence of learning. Make sure that you never make the same mistake twice and don’t let mistakes you do make hinder your work ethic or your confidence.


Very few people have ever become successful without understanding the minds of others. Knowing what makes a man – or a woman – tick is essential. If you can’t discern the motivation of a friend, colleague or rival – you can’t expect success. Your life is determined by, and always will be determined by, the actions of others – if you have the foresight to see what is coming and why it’s coming, you’ll be able to adjust your actions accordingly.


…and if you don’t enjoy it – quit! Many feel that they must pursue a path that they’re unsuited to for financial reasons or social pressure. The truth is that, more often than not, this attitude will hinder your chances of advancing within a profession – not to mention the fact that you’ll be darn miserable. Of course we all have to show stoicism from time to time, however doing something that you completely dislike is unhealthy and will hinder your personal and professional development.

Further Reading

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