What Should You Do in Your 20s to Avoid Regrets in Your 30s and 40s? Here’s What People Said.

Life is about constantly evolving, constantly learning, and constantly trying to improve yourself.

You go through a lot of peaks and valleys during this interesting ride, and sometimes you just have to experience things firsthand for them to really sink in and force you to make changes.

BUT…I have to admit that if I could do it over again, I would’ve done some things differently in my twenties so my thirties would have been a little bit easier.

But we all live and we learn…

Check out these words of wisdom for twenty-somethings from AskReddit users.

1. Important.

“Learn how to budget. Even if it’s just a simple excel or google sheets file with one column of income, and one of expenses.

When you see everything you buy in a month next to each other, you realize where you can save money pretty well.”

2. Do it yourself.

“Learn how to be independently happy.

I wish someone could have screamed this in my face with a megaphone whenever I was about to do something codependently stupid in my 20s and early 30s.”

3. Good advice.

“Don’t smoke.

Don’t drink every day


Eat healthy.

Save your $ and invest.

Don’t marry crazy regardless of how good the s*x is.”

4. Go for it.

“Take chances.

Someone you fancy? Ask them out.

Want to try a new education path or hobby? Do it.

Have trouble with anxiety/self worth/past crappy experiences? Get a good therapist and work on it.

Your 20s are the time you get to figure out who you are.”

5. Very true.

“Protect your hearing!

Wear ear plugs at concerts and don’t always crank up the music in your car.”

6. Goals are good.

“Make sure that if you have a relationship with someone you actually nail down the long term goals and agree on them.

Like kids. How exactly will that work? Marriage? Find your deal breakers and take them seriously.

From 20-30 the time really flies and you don’t want to miss it.”

7. Be active.


Even lightly once a week. Just do something. Stretch too, yoga is great.

Some won’t try it because of the stigma, but just do it at home with YouTube videos if you want to.”

8. Do it!

“Learn how to cook and eat healthy.

You’ll save money and your body will appreciate it.”


“Live your life the way you want to, not the way your parents tell you is “best”, and not the way society “expects” you to. Unless that actually lines up with what you want.

I spent way too much time doing what I thought were the “right” things or the “best” things and I was actually miserable.”

10. Something to think about. 

“Don’t get married until you are able to be fully self sufficient. If you get married thinking the other half will “complete you,” you are dead wrong. Make sure you know who you are.

When in school get jobs in different fields that interest you. This will help you figure out what you really want to do.

Realize you aren’t stuck anywhere. You can change, you have time.

Have fun! You’ll have plenty of time to be miserable.”

11. Discipline.

“Create discipline.

Find what your goals in life are and set steps to achieve them. Create a minimal workout regimen that you must do (walk, push ups, swim, pullup bar by bathroom, whatever).

Create a diet you want to adhere to. 21 meals a week? You can only do fast food/unhealthy restaurant 4 times or so many desserts a week or so many unhealthy snacks a day.

Read! Read whatever interests you, and always try to find unbiased (yeah right) articles or at least read the side you disagree with too. Open your mind to feel empathy and know others live in this world.

Learn a little more than basic math. Learn an instrument or a couple songs on bass/guitar/drums. Get into at least 1 sport. Last, but not least, learn another language, more if you can.”

12. It’s harder to make friends as you get older.

“Seek out and/or retain social friendships.

College is over, and you probably won’t see a lot of those people very much anymore.

Don’t be afraid to look around for meetup groups or events in your area to meet new people.”

13. Let them know.

“If you don’t want to get married to the person you’re with, tell them.

It’s far better to have some hurt feelings now than to have severe regrets and a lot of legal fees later. Just listen to your gut.”

14. A black hole.

“Don’t get into credit card debt!

if you must get into credit card debt (life can be cruel sometimes), then know the best ways to pay it off over time and set a schedule for yourself. Then stick to it.

The minimum payments will kill you in the long run, but sometimes it’s the best you can do, and that’s okay. Credit card “debt” can save people from being homeless, take care of a medical emergency, help get more time with their kids, etc.

Sometimes it’s okay to but one thing that will help your mental health, too. Just know your limits and stop at one. Then make a plan to pay it off the way that works best for you and do it.”

15. It’s okay to change your mind.

“Always know that change is an option. Many people, myself included, start down a path and think that since I committed to that path, it’s the only path for me.

Don’t get caught in that thought process.

If a choice (career, location, relationship, etc) doesn’t feel right down the road, know you can make a new one. It may be uncomfortable at first, but you can make it through (and likely for the better).”

Now we want to hear from you.

In the comments, tell us what advice you think all folks in their twenties should hear.

Please and thank you!