38 Lessons that took me 38 Years to Learn

Jake Wilder
4 min readMay 23, 2020

I’m Hoping You Can Learn from My Mistakes

I turned 38 years-old today. Looking back on a myriad of past mistakes and bad decisions, here’s my birthday present to anyone interested — 38 lessons that I wish I’d learned much earlier in life.

  1. We almost always know what we should do to get what we want. We just rarely do it. We don’t want to pay the price. Recognize that there’s always a sacrifice that comes with achieving something of significance.
  2. Trying to keep score in a relationship is a recipe for disappointment.
  3. Action isn’t just the effect of motivation. It’s the cause of it.
  4. Leaders cannot break trust with people and continue to lead. Building and strengthening trust must always be a top priority.
  5. We‘re all role models to someone. People will use your actions as a model for their future behavior. It’s worthwhile to make sure we’ll be happy about that.
  6. When someone doesn’t do something that I asked them to do, 90% of the time it’s because I didn’t communicate it well.
  7. If you hold yourself accountable to the highest standards, no one else will ever be able to do so.
  8. Temporary fixes quickly become permanent. Don’t live with deficiencies.



Jake Wilder

I don’t know where I’m going. But at least I know how to get there.