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40 life lessons at 40

Updated: Sep 16, 2023

Today I celebrate my 40th birthday. For this special blog I wanted to share forty unique insights and life lessons with you that have helped to shape my outlook and strengthen my mindset throughout my life. I hope it helps you today.

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They say life begins at 40. Though I don't really agree with that - I understand the sentiment. Many believe it's a renaissance of freedom in which you learn to be more confident with yourself, stop worrying so much, and carry a new zest for life.

I can dig that.

So, as I stand on the cusp of this new decade, I'm not just celebrating a birthday; I'm embracing a world of possibilities and reflecting on the incredible journey that has brought me here. It's a journey filled with joys, sorrows, victories, and lessons — 40 years' worth of experiences that have shaped me into the person I am today.

And I'm happy with who I am today. I'm not scared of getting older. I embrace the good and the bad. The ups and downs, the scars. I wear them with pride - both internally and externally.

But this milestone isn't just about personal reflection; it's about sharing the wisdom I've gathered along the way. Turning 40 is like reaching the summit of a mountain and looking back at the winding path you've traveled. It's a moment to pause, catch your breath, and appreciate the view, but it's also a chance to guide those who are still navigating the climb.

In this blog, I want to take you on a journey through 40 life lessons I've learned, each one a stepping stone on my path to 40. These lessons have illuminated my way, provided solace in tough times, and offered a compass to help me find my way. They span a spectrum of experiences—some hard-earned, others gifts from the people and moments that have graced my life.

Why share these life lessons?

Because I believe that wisdom grows more potent when it's shared. By opening up about my journey and the insights I've gained, I hope to inspire, comfort, and guide others who may be standing at their own crossroads or embarking on their unique adventures.

Whether you're turning 40, somewhere in between, or on a different path altogether, there's something here for you. So, join me as we explore 40 pearls of wisdom from the heart of turning 40. It's a celebration of life's twists and turns, a toast to the years that have shaped us, and an invitation to embrace the wisdom that awaits us in the decades to come.

What are life lessons?

Life lessons are the profound insights and knowledge gained through personal experiences, challenges, successes, and failures over the course of one's life.

These lessons often result from self-reflection and learning from past events, interactions, and choices. Life lessons are not theoretical or textbook knowledge; they are practical, personal, and deeply meaningful. They provide guidance for navigating future challenges and making informed decisions.

Why are life lessons important?

Life lessons hold significant importance for several reasons:

  1. Personal Growth: Life lessons are instrumental in personal growth and self-improvement. They help individuals evolve, develop resilience, and become wiser as they learn from their experiences.

  2. Decision-Making: Life lessons provide valuable insights that inform decision-making. They enable individuals to make more informed, thoughtful choices based on past successes and failures.

  3. Emotional Intelligence: Learning from life lessons enhances emotional intelligence. People become more adept at understanding and managing their emotions and those of others.

  4. Relationships: Life lessons improve relationships by fostering empathy, communication skills, and the ability to resolve conflicts. They teach individuals about compromise, forgiveness, and understanding.

  5. Adaptability: Life lessons help individuals adapt to change and overcome adversity. They provide coping strategies for dealing with challenges and setbacks.

  6. Happiness and Fulfillment: Understanding and applying life lessons can lead to a happier and more fulfilling life. They encourage gratitude, perspective, and a deeper appreciation for life's blessings.

  7. Legacy: Sharing life lessons with others, especially younger generations, helps pass on wisdom and knowledge. It contributes to the collective growth of society and leaves a lasting legacy.

  8. Resilience: Life lessons build resilience by teaching individuals how to bounce back from difficulties and setbacks. They remind us that failures are opportunities for growth.

  9. Self-Reflection: Life lessons encourage self-reflection, introspection, and continuous learning. They prompt individuals to ask important questions about their values, goals, and priorities.

  10. Preventing Mistakes: Life lessons can prevent individuals from making the same mistakes repeatedly. They serve as a reminder of what went wrong in the past and how to avoid similar pitfalls in the future.

So... Without further ado, here they are. 40 life lessons that have shaped my life.

40 Life Lessons at 40

1) Embrace change; it's a constant in life.

Change is inevitable and often leads to personal growth. By accepting and adapting to change, you can navigate life's transitions more smoothly.

2) Prioritize your physical and mental health.

Your well-being is the foundation of a fulfilling life. Regular exercise, a balanced diet, and mental self-care are essential for maintaining good health.

3) Cherish your family and friends; they are your support system.

Strong relationships provide emotional support and connection. Nurture these bonds as they are a source of happiness and resilience.

4) Take risks and step out of your comfort zone.

Growth and opportunities often lie outside your comfort zone. Embracing challenges and taking calculated risks can lead to personal and professional development.

5) Gratitude is the key to happiness.

Practicing gratitude helps you focus on the positives in your life and fosters contentment and joy.

6) Time is your most valuable resource; use it wisely.

Time is finite, so allocate it to activities and people that align with your values and goals.

7) Never stop learning; education is a lifelong journey.

Embrace a growth mindset and continue acquiring knowledge and skills throughout your life. Learning keeps your mind active and adaptable.

8) Forgive, but don't forget the lessons.

Forgiveness is liberating, but it's also important to remember the lessons learned from past experiences to avoid repeating them.

9) Quality matters more than quantity in relationships.

Meaningful connections are more valuable than a large network of acquaintances. Invest your time and energy in nurturing deeper relationships.

10) Pursue your passions and hobbies.

Engaging in activities you love brings fulfillment and can provide an essential escape from daily stresses.

11) Practice self-care regularly.

Prioritize self-care to maintain your mental, emotional, and physical health. It's not selfish; it's necessary for well-being.

12) Trust your intuition; it's usually right.

Your intuition is often a valuable source of guidance. Pay attention to your gut feelings and instincts.

13) Be kind to yourself; self-compassion is essential.

Treat yourself with the same kindness and understanding that you offer to others. Self-compassion promotes mental well-being.

14) Embrace failure as a stepping stone to success.

Failure is a natural part of growth. Learn from your failures, persevere, and use them as stepping stones to achieve your goals.

15) Travel and explore different cultures.

Travel broadens your horizons, exposes you to diverse perspectives, and fosters empathy and cultural understanding.

16) Your attitude shapes your reality.

A positive attitude can transform challenging situations into opportunities for growth and resilience.

17) Invest in experiences rather than material possessions.

Experiences create lasting memories and bring greater happiness than material possessions. Spend your resources on experiences that enrich your life.

18) Learn to say "no" when necessary.

Setting boundaries and saying "no" when you need to is crucial for maintaining balance in your life and respecting your own limits.

19) Surround yourself with positive influences.

The people you surround yourself with significantly impact your mindset and choices. Choose relationships that uplift and support you.

20) Let go of grudges and resentment; they only weigh you down.

Holding onto grudges and resentment only harms your well-being. Forgiveness frees you from these emotional burdens.

21) Find purpose and meaning in your life.

Discovering your purpose and aligning your actions with your values can provide a profound sense of fulfillment. If you don't like the idea of purpose, call it your life's mission.

22) Accept that not everything is within your control.

Acknowledge that some events are beyond your control. Focus on what you can influence, and let go of what you cannot.

23) Money can't buy happiness, but financial stability is crucial.

While money doesn't guarantee happiness, financial stability provides a sense of security and peace of mind.

24) Be kind as much as possible, but don't let people walk all over you

Being a kind person is a strength beyond measure. Don't let anyone take advantage of it and don't run from conflict when it arises. Integrity matters. Self confidence matters. Karma is real. Embrace your kindness and spread it - the world needs more of it.

25) Keep a journal to reflect on your thoughts and experiences.

Journaling is a therapeutic practice that helps you process emotions, gain clarity, and track personal growth.

26) Be open to new ideas and perspectives.

An open mind fosters personal growth and enables you to understand and connect with a diverse range of people.

27) Show gratitude to those who have supported you.

Expressing gratitude strengthens relationships and acknowledges the support and kindness of others in your journey.

28) Take time to enjoy life's simple pleasures.

Find joy in everyday moments, whether it's a beautiful sunset, a good book, or a warm cup of tea.

29) Value your time alone for self-reflection.

Solitude allows for self-discovery and introspection, helping you gain insight into your thoughts, feelings, and goals.

30) Make time for hobbies and interests that bring you joy.

Pursuing hobbies and interests outside of work enriches your life and provides a source of passion and joy.

31) Don't compare your journey to others; everyone's path is unique.

Comparison can lead to dissatisfaction. Focus on your own progress and celebrate your unique journey.

32) Practice empathy and understanding towards others.

Empathy fosters compassion and strengthens connections with others by allowing you to see the world from their perspective.

33) Invest in your relationships; they require effort.

Maintaining healthy relationships requires time, effort, and communication. Nurture your connections with care.

34) Be adaptable and resilient in the face of adversity.

Life inevitably presents challenges. Adaptability and resilience help you bounce back and thrive in difficult times.

35) Seek out mentors and learn from their experiences.

Mentors can provide valuable guidance and insights to help you navigate your personal and professional growth.

36) Balance work and personal life; both are important.

Striking a balance between your professional and personal life ensures a fulfilling and well-rounded existence.

37) Don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it.

Seeking assistance is a sign of strength, not weakness. Reach out when you require support or guidance.

38) Embrace aging gracefully; it's a privilege denied to many.

Aging is a natural part of life. Embrace each stage with grace and gratitude for the experiences it brings.

39) Find beauty in the imperfections of life.

Imperfections are what make life unique and beautiful. Embrace them as part of the human experience.

40) Live in the present moment; it's a gift.

The present moment is where life happens. Mindfulness and presence allow you to savor life's experiences fully.


I hope you enjoyed 40 life lessons at 40. These important life lessons will help you to embrace change, prioritize your well-being, cherish relationships, and seek personal growth.

In closing, as I reflect on these 40 life lessons learned after 40 years, I'm reminded of the profound transformation we can undergo in the pursuit of a happier and more fulfilling existence. 'Life 2.0' is not just a catchy title; it's a philosophy, a way of living. It's about embracing change, pursuing growth, and nurturing the flames of curiosity that burn within us. These lessons have been my compass, guiding me through the highs and lows, and I hope they serve as a guiding light for you too on your journey toward a life filled with purpose, joy, and fulfillment.

Remember, it's never too late to embark on your own 'Life 2.0' journey. Every day is an opportunity to learn, grow, and create a life that resonates with your deepest desires and aspirations. So, as you navigate the path ahead, may these lessons serve as your companions, illuminating the way toward a brighter, more enriching future. Here's to the next chapter of your extraordinary journey, where you craft a life that is uniquely yours and infinitely beautiful.

Wishing you love and light.



Matt Jones is a writer and entrepreneur with multiple businesses who enjoys inspiring others. He is also a professional musician who has been to over 40 different countries on all seven continents. His personal mission is to create and inspire. He is from Los Angeles but is now based in Greater London. His latest book "Life 2.0" is available on Amazon.




Awesome 😀

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