The things you learn in maturity aren’t simple things such as acquiring information and skills. You learn not to engage in self-destructive behavior. You learn not to burn up energy in anxiety. You discover how to manage your tensions, if you have any, which you do. You learn that self-pity and resentment are among the most toxic of drugs. You find that the world loves talent, but pays off on character.
John Maeda re-posted this beautiful rumination by John W. Gardner on self-renewal for those approaching or caught up in middle age. You should read it all.
I’d read this before but it’s always a lovely surprise when something swings back around and tugs you on the shirt sleeve again.