Find an old picture of yourself when your age was in the single digits. Think about everything that happened to that kid between then and now. Cry if you feel like it. Odds are, somewhere along the line, you took nearly everything that kid valued in life into a dark alley and beat the living shit out of it. Repeatedly. Age and wisdom tend to go hand in hand so it’s easy to dismiss that regime change as part of growing up and escaping the foolishness of youth. But for the average person the level of life satisfaction enjoyed in their teens won’t be reached again until well past retirement age, if ever. This wryly smiling graph illustrates the typical progression (and adolescence isn’t a particularly high hurdle):
Was that younger [arrogant, ignorant, and idealistic] version of you really the fool, or is it you?