50 top pearls of wisdom handed down through generations

Start thinking about your retirement before your boss does, marry someone who makes you laugh and only pack what you can carry yourself.

Friday, 13th January 2017, 3:46 pm
Updated Friday, 13th January 2017, 3:46 pm

These are among the top 50 ‘pearls of wisdom’ handed down to offspring by wise retirees.

Don’t go into business with family, avoid lending money you’re likely to need back and never let the sun set on an argument with friends are also among the best advice.

The survey of 1,000 retirees by the Skipton Building Society sparked many financial tips, like ‘pay off debts rather than spending money on luxury items’ and ‘try to settle your mortgage as early as possible’.

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Stacey Stothard, from Skipton Building Society, said: “The pearls of wisdom which feature in this list show just how wise and wonderful our older generations are.

“By retirement age, people generally have a solid understanding about what’s important and what matters most - who better to advise younger people than those who have already experienced so much?

“The over-65s can look back on mistakes they have made and opportunities they’ve missed during the first two thirds of their life, and try to encourage their children and grandchildren to follow a different path.

“Equally in sharing their experience of what’s worked well - and prioritising for the longer term - not just the here and now - is priceless advice coming from many retirees.”

When it comes to finances, retirees are brimming with useful tips for youngsters - such as plan for retirement rather than burying your head in the sand.

‘Spend some, save some’ is also advice commonly passed down by people over the age of 65 - with many feeling you should holiday as much as you can, while you can.

Retirees are quick to suggest people should start saving at a young age, and recommend people don’t lend money they may need back.

In relationships, retirees reckon you should marry someone who makes you laugh, and stick by old pals even when making new friends.

Stacey added: “At Skipton, we’ve been helping people to lift their heads up and plan for their life ahead for 163 years, so we’ve got lots of our own pearls of wisdom to share.”


1. Pay your bills and stay out of debt

2. Pay off debts rather than spending money on luxury items

3. Pay off your mortgage as early as you can

4. Plan for retirement rather than burying your head in the sand

5. Teach your own children how to budget from an early age

6. Be kind

7. Spend some, save some

8. Teach your children the value of money

9. Pursue hobbies and interests outside of work

10. It’s OK to need help

11. Don’t make decisions when you’re angry

12. Treat yourself once in a while

13. Spend more time with the children before they leave home

14. Don’t complain about getting older: not everybody gets the privilege

15. Start saving at a young age

16. Manners maketh man

17. Do something every day that makes you happy

18. Try to not worry about what other think

19. Travel / go on more holidays while you can afford it

20. The most important person in your life is the person who agreed to share their life with you - treat them as such

21. Neither a borrower nor a lender be

22. Never lend money that you need back

23. Make new friends but stick by the old ones

24. Always trust your gut feeling

25. Marry someone who makes you laugh

26. Always lose gracefully

27. Take criticism constructively

28. Spend quality time with your grandparents as they won’t be there forever

29. Don’t be in too much of a hurry to grow up

30. Make sure you get a job doing what you love

31. Always sleep on a big decision

32. Get to know your neighbours

33. To thine own self be true

34. Never let the sun set on an argument with friends

35. Start thinking about your retirement before your boss does

36. Never go into business with family or friends

37. Happy wife = happy life

38. Don’t work long hours, save it for when the children have left home

39. Nothing worth doing comes easy

40. Only pack what you can carry yourself

41. Be persistent

42. Do what you can to live close to your grandchildren

43. Floss regularly, dental problems are awful

44. Always avoid inconveniencing others

45. Never give up what you want most for something you want now

46. Don’t rely on one or two close friends, create a network of many

47. Never give relationship advice – you’ll always be wrong

48. Continue date nights with your partner after having children

49. Never make someone a priority who only makes you an option

50. Clean less