I mused last week about what it would be like to relive my college days with my present day mind. While I had a great time in college, I’m pretty sure I missed a lot of opportunities to simply enjoy my stage in life because I was naive. As the phrase goes, “Youth is wasted on the young.”
I’m 40 now … that’s not terribly old in the grand scheme of things, but it’s old enough that I’ve developed a tiny bit of perspective. Most of this perspective is about which things and people I should care about and whether or not I should beat myself up over certain things (the answer to the latter is that I should not beat myself up at all).
So if I were to relive the glory days, the first thing I would do is to appreciate the time and youth that I had. Seriously, college was the time of maximum freedom with minimum responsibility. Not everyone is this way, but I certainly contained myself too often trying to be the person I thought other people wanted me to be. If I were to relive those days, I’d also take time to enjoy the time I had with people I loved and things I loved doing. The cliched response to the possibility of going back would be to live more debaucherously, but honestly, that’s not my thing. I may party or play a bit more, but nothing crazy. The real thing is to enjoy it … because it’s gone too soon and too fast. I suppose lastly that I’d invest a bit more in my health and weight (I’m a fatty-boom-ba-latty now), so I wouldn’t have as large of an uphill battle now that I’m both older and fat.
All this being said, that made me think … in 20 years, what would I say about reliving my 40s? What wisdom would I want to give my younger self? I think, perhaps, that some of the lessons would be the same:
Stop trying to be the person you think other people want you to be,
Take time to enjoy the time you have with the people you love and things you love doing,
Party and play a bit more, but nothing too crazy, 😉
Invest a bit more in your health and weight … because it’s only going to get worse and harder if you don’t do it now.
Certainly, I have other goals that are important like my work and family life, but I would be wise to remember that whatever I endeavor upon to enjoy it …. because ultimately it’s gone too soon and too fast.
I think I’m going to go hug someone now…. =)
With deepest affection,
Doug “Optimus” Pruim (… because it sounds like “Prime” … because it’s Dutch. Oh, the Dutch.)