Reader Poll: Is It Better To Be In Your Twenties or Forties?

PinExt Reader Poll: Is It Better To Be In Your Twenties or Forties?

waiting for age Reader Poll: Is It Better To Be In Your Twenties or Forties? Age is something that none of us can avoid.  No matter how much effort you exert, you cannot stop the aging process.  Time passes and we celebrate more birthdays whether we like it or not.  I’ve always been a firm believer that life has its seasons.  Things come and go.  But now that I’m in my early forties, I think a little more about age and its significance.  Lately, I’ve been considering whether it is better to be twenty-something or forty-something.

The advantages of being in your twenties.

It has been awhile since I was twenty-something, but as I recall there are some advantages.  I enjoyed my twenties and believe that for most people this decade is characterized by freedom and exploration.  Adult life is new and the world is wide-open with opportunity.  Here are some things that generally go with being twenty-something:

  • Single
  • Attractive
  • Active social life
  • No children
  • Good health
  • Lots of energy
  • Stamina to live fast
  • Simple lifestyle
  • Low cost of living
  • More freedom
  • No one else to answer to for actions
  • More adventurous

For most people, their twenties is a time to try new things and discover who they are.  It is exciting to finally be a full-fledged adult.  I remember these years fondly.

The advantages of being in your forties.

Contrary to what some believe, life is not over once you turn forty.  In fact, I have found that there are a number of positives that come with this age.  I think that once you reach forty, you have started to understand more about yourself.  You have usually endured some hardships and learned a few life lessons.  You have settled down and resolved many of the questions that you had in your twenties.  Here are some more things that generally go with being forty-something:

  • Married
  • Not as concerned about looks
  • Wiser due to experience (i.e. learned from mistakes)
  • Fewer, but deeper relationships
  • More patient
  • Greater financial resources
  • Increased appreciation for kids
  • Live at slower pace
  • Surrounded by family
  • Better at relaxing
  • Values health
  • Established in career
  • Less social pressure

My thoughts about age and its impact on our lives

As I started out saying, I think there are seasons in life.  Each has its positives and negatives.  I certainly enjoyed my twenties and often reflect on the days where I had less responsibility and things were simpler.  However, I am also grateful for where I’m at now.  I’m very happy with the life that I’ve built.  I believe I have more contentment and have learned to slow down a little to truly enjoy what I have.

In terms of living life to the fullest, I think that these two decades of life have different things to offer. 

Your twenties are active and adventurous.  I would encourage every twenty-something to read Marc’s 70 Things To Do Before Having Children and heed his suggestions.  Go out there and try new things!  Discover as much as you can about what the world has to offer.  Take risks while there is less to lose.  The world is your playground!

On the other hand, I would challenge those in your forties to be grateful for all you have.  You have the experience and wisdom to make this the most fruitful season of your life yet.  You still have time to build and savor.  The forties are a sweet spot!

What do you think?  Which is better?

I’m interested in knowing your thoughts.  Which do you think is better, being twenty or forty?  Leave a comment below and state your case!

Photo by thievingjoker

PinExt Reader Poll: Is It Better To Be In Your Twenties or Forties?

24 thoughts on “Reader Poll: Is It Better To Be In Your Twenties or Forties?

  1. It’s best to be who you are right now regardless of age. To be 20 and want to look ahead is great but there’s so much that you need to experience. To be 40 and look back is a waste since those days are gone. The best we can do is learn from those ahead of us, teach those behind us and live our lives to the fullest now!

    I’m in my 30′s now and there are aspects of my 20′s I occasionally miss but I wouldn’t trade it for the world!

  2. Well, I am in my 20s for another month. Not all the stuff on those lists rings true for me – I think a lot of the stuff you have on your 40s list is already true for me and some of the stuff on the 20s list, I hope to never lose. I think the 20s have been fabulous because I got married (at 21) and had my kids by 28. I have learned a lot that I wouldn’t take back. Hopefully lessons from my 20s will help to make my 30s and then 40s and on even better.

  3. @FFB – We certainly can’t go back and can only look forward. I definitely believe I still have a lot of life to live. I hope I never lose my adventurous spirit and willingness to learn.

    @Emily – It is interesting how each of us has a unique experience. Having children definitely helps one to mature and grow wiser. I didn’t have kids until I was in my 30s. This might account for some of the differences.

    Thanks for your great comments! Let’s hear some more opinions!

  4. I definitely prefer being in my forties over being in my twenties. The twenty-something phase was fun and adventurous etc, but being forty-something brings a tremendous feeling of “I don’t care what others think about me” and feeling comfortable in my own skin. I wouldn’t trade being 40+ for anything.

  5. I’m now in my 30′s and guess I look forward to my 40′s if it means I’ll be more patient. I’ve been impatient all my life and having kids certainly hasn’t helped. I don’t know if having kids that are in junior high will make me more relaxed or more stressed out. It’s all a learning experience.

  6. I agree with Lin, the forties are great. I feel more alive than I’ve ever felt. And in my 20′s and 30′s I felt very alive. Life just keeps getting better. The kids are getting older and I feel like I’ve got a new lease on life. I LOVED their baby and toddler-hoods, but I’ve got to say, everything keeps getting better. I’d never go back.

    Also Lin mentioned being comfortable in one’s own skin and not caring as much what people think. This is an amazing thing to me. It literally seemed to happen when I turned 40. It is an incredibly liberating experience. Recently I’ve joined 2 groups and am excelling at being the absolute worst in each group. Prior to 40 I never would have chosen to join a group where I’d be the worst. Never did I have that kind of humility. This new liberation is one of the greatest things I’ve experienced. I’m thankful for my 40′s and wouldn’t go back in time for anything.

    Read valerie’s lastest article – farty news

  7. I am still in my 20′s but somehow looking forward to grow old and inevitably loosing my hair (you can’t avoid your genes, can you?). I would like to be more settled, and getting some answers (or questions).

  8. My wild ways and wild spending, before marriage and a child in my late 30′s, led me to be deep in debt in my 40′s. I live a pretty frugal life now – and have to say “if only I knew then what I know now”.
    I look forward to my 50′s!

  9. Having gone through both my 20′s and 40′s….they are both great!! Enjoy them…and don’t worry about which is better.
    They each have their good points and bad points. Major on the good points…and forget the bad!!! Life is too short, enjoy each day!!!

  10. I personally don’t think there is one that is ‘better’ than the other, they are both what you make of them.

    I guess if you are in your 40′s then you’ve gone through them both, as long as you were in the moment throughout those decades then you certainly haven’t missed anything.

    P.S. I haven’t been through either yet so my opinion might be biased ;]

    Read Glen Allsopp’s lastest article – Case Study: Turning $100 into 10,000 visitors and 100+ Links

  11. Good question – I just turned 40!

    It’s always better to be young since you have a longer life ahead of you, but I have to admit my life is much better now than when I was in my 20′s so maybe it’s more important to be enjoying life now rather than have many year to go?

    Scott – nothing tries your patience like kids – I’m not the most patient person in the world either and it has been a challenge.

    Read Mike’s lastest article – 9 Easy Ways to Save Money On Investment Costs

  12. Forties – absolutely! I’m happier, healthier, better looking and more physcially active than I’ve ever been. I’d never go back to my twenties, even if I could. I have a better handle on what, and who, is important now. I could go on and on. Life just keeps getting better. I have no doubt that I’ll think the same of my fifties!

    Read Mary@SimplyForties’s lastest article – Need Some Relationship Rescue?

  13. you can not say if one is better than the other. Each decade has its great and awful things. :)
    Im quite close to the 40s, and Im looking foward!
    I feel happier now.

  14. I hate to say it, but I’m several decades beyond 40. So, the advantages of my present lifestyle?

    Active social life
    No children
    Good health
    Lots of energy
    Stamina to live fast
    Simple lifestyle
    Low cost of living
    More freedom
    No one else to answer to for actions
    More adventurous

    What goes around, comes around. :-)

    Read Grace’s lastest article – 3 Even FASTER ways to battle Fast Food Cravings

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