There are plenty of different places to get advice. There are fortune cookies, the all-knowing tags on your tea, your quirky older neighbor, inspirational quotes on Pinterest, and your therapist. Some of the best advice comes from those who have simply lived longer than we have. They’ve had more time to make mistakes and learn from them, and watch others make them so they can avoid them altogether. That’s why Allure talked to these 100-year-old women about how to live your best life. Their answers were illuminating.

When asked if she had any advice for 20-year-olds, one centenarian said, “I would tell them to do what they want to do, take risks.” She followed that by saying with a laugh, “Then, when you get older, don’t take risks.” Other tidbits of advice offered by the women interviewed: Finish school, as education is often deemed a necessity in this day and age; get involved in what you’d like to do (in other words, find your passion); and, of course, stand on your own two feet.

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