One of my pet peeves is when people judge people based off how they look. For some people it's just a natural instinct to look at others and see what you attribute to signs of success missing in them so you assume they are lacking. Then you will give unsolicited advice (my biggest pet peeve) under the guise of helping someone better themselves. I know some people have good intentions when they give you advice that you didn't ask for but key words "you didn't ask".
While grocery shopping the other day I wondered away from my husband and kids to grab somethings further down a crowed aisle. I head back to place the things in the cart and I find a woman in her 50s chatting with my husband. As I start to tune into the conversation I hear her commenting on noticing I have a very "curious" two year and how a child being curious is a great thing. I smile and agree because I agree there isn't anything wrong with a child being curious that's how they learn about the world around them. Then she goes on to say that she has three sons and how they're all very successful and she attributes that to them being very curious kids. People love to brag on their kids and I find it to be harmless so again we smile & give sort of a congrats to you for raising great children. Next she tells us how all her sons have great jobs, they drive luxury cars, two didn't marry before they turned 30, didn't have kids out of wedlock, and those same two owned homes by once they hit 30. Her youngest son who is in his mid to late 20s is in a very committed relationship with a great woman who is a advertising exec. Once again we smile and congratulate her on doing a great job. Then as we were trying to continue on with our shopping and move out the way so other shoppers wouldn't have to maneuver around us she goes on to tell us in depth what type of luxury vehicles & careers her son had. Now we learned that one of her sons drove a 2006 BMW, the other an early 2000 Audi A8 (which then she spent about another 2/3 minutes explaining to us what type of car that is how expensive it is. At this point I became annoyed. I know what an Audi A8 is considering that I was an accountant for 12 years for an auto mall and Audi was one of the franchises that we had). She states that her other one has a van but that's what he wanted & he paid cash for it. She told us her youngest son is a general manager (for some reason she felt the need to explain to us what a GM is) for a marketing company. She tells us how they wear the nicest and most expensive clothes. Then there was something about one of her sons finding museum quality crystals and rocks that he stores in his house. I don't remember what the other sons were nor do I care at this point. Now I've become annoyed. She wraps all this up with telling us our kids can be just as "successful" as her sons if we do as she did and let them be curious.
I don't mind parents sharing stories of their children. I don't mind parents bragging on their children's success. I don't mind listening to A story about their childhood that sticks out in your head. I'm sure this lady might have meant well & probably didn't see some of her comments insulting but this is why you shouldn't give out unsolicited advice. Things can start off great but almost always it takes a turn for the worse.
Since we are all people from different socioeconomic backgrounds we tend to have different ideas of what success is. For me I don't attribute expensive labels and job titles to signify someone being extremely successful. My husband and I both could drive newer luxury cars than what her sons are driving if we chose to. I owned my first home at the age of 26 which is few years before her sons and although the home we are in now is my husband's first he purchased we bought it a couple of months before he turned 28 so again before her sons did. I was also an accounting department manager before I left my job & my husband is a telecom tech engineer. We have the ability to pay off both of our vehicles right now if we wanted to do so. I didn't marry my husband until after I was 30 and our first child came shortly after. If you go by her way of thinking technically we are way more "successful" than any of her three sons.
I say all of this to say stop judging people based off what you think success is and unsolicited advice isn't always needed. If you're going to give some "advice" keep it short and keep it moving. My husband and I are not flashy people and unless we have somewhere to be you will typically find us in sweats, basketball shorts, and t-shirts. We're not big jewelry people so other than our wedding bands you will rarely find us with much more than that on. I don't judge people based off of labels. If you are truly happy where you are in life & are able to support yourself (and family if you have one) that's what I considered to be success. Everyone lives off their own standards. If you like wearing expensive clothes and driving expensive imported vehicles there isn't anything wrong with that. Please remember that just because someone else doesn't do the same doesn't mean they can't maybe they just don't want to.