Hunter S. Thompson has a nice quote that fits here:
“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”
I’d say the 20’s are the best years of your life. When you are in your 20’s you are still young enough to make mistakes and not have to spend the rest of your life paying for them. The older you get, the more making a mistake can affect the rest of your life.
If you’re in your 20’s and cheat on your girlfriend, big deal, you’ll find another one. If you’re in your 40’s and cheat on your wife, you lose your kids, house, and everything else. And you probably won’t find another wife.
Thus, a smart thing to do is use your 20’s to work like an animal building companies non-stop, seeing which ones work and which do not, iterating on your successes and building on those successes. You can work like an animal because chances are that you’re not tied down with a wife and kids and mortgage, so in essence you’re running lean and mean just like the companies you are creating.
And obviously you can use your 20’s for things other than company creation. Use your 20’s to travel the world. That’s exactly what I did. Think about it – you have two choices of when to travel (1) in your 20’s or (2) when you’re old and retired. Which will you choose?
When it’s all said and done, your 20’s are a time to gain as many experiences as possible. It would be a crying shame to go through your 20’s trying to play it safe, trying to work your way up a corporate ladder, and save for retirement. You’ll learn more and live a fuller life if you experiment and maximize the leniency and forgiveness your 20’s provide.
In general, no. If anything, your 20’s are usually some of the worst years of your life. Most people who have lived long enough will tell you that their best years started in their 50’s. I would agree with that personally.
In your 20’s, everything is ahead of you, but you have no idea how to get from point A to point B. The amount you have to learn to be happy in your life is staggering, particularly in emotional areas where the baggage from your childhood is still enormous and following you around like 100 lb. anchor, affecting everything you do.
Other people have accomplished a lot more than you in the same amount of time and you can’t seem to get out of your dead end job despite your education.
I need to apply another 42 seconds of heat to fully crystallize these complex starch molecules.
Your closest relationship isn’t all that great and you can’t seem to make it better. In fact, you see yourself making it worse.
In your 20’s, you suck at life and as a result you’re just hopping from one personal crisis to the next. Everything is a drama.
This is life in your 20’s:
It’s easy to slip and easy to fall. Everything is a balancing act and the path is a precarious one. You often don’t know if you’re on the right path. Uncertainty is everywhere.
Yet as you get older and more experienced at life, you get better and better at different areas and things start to improve. You’ve failed enough in some areas to have learned valuable lessons and you get more respect from the world because you’ve earned it.
But not in your 20’s. They suck.