A couple of weeks ago I turned 30. As you might expect, many folks asked me what it felt like and if I felt older now. The truth is, I feel the same as I did at 24. That may sound absurd, given the transitions I’ve had in the last six years, but at heart, I am the same person. For me, it’s about my situation in life, not the number.
Admittedly, this might be easier for me to say because I am married, have a kid, and am well into my career. Not everyone can say that at 30. I haven’t had anyone ask me “if my clock is ticking” (Don’t ever, ever say this). No one asks me if I think marriage is in my future. No one asks me when I will get a “real” job or finish my degree.
Even if I wanted to, I can’t stop time. 30 is here! I do feel a little older, wiser, and more content now. I’ve learned a few things too.
30 Lessons in 30 Years
- Take care of your health!
- There’s nothing wrong with shopping consignment.
- A night around a campfire laughing with good friends is 100% better than a night of clubbing.
- Kindness matters.
- Be kind to yourself, too. You are the only one guaranteed to treat you well.
- Deep love and partnership is rewarding and worth the wait.
- Money doesn’t grow on trees and math doesn’t lie. Make a budget and stick to it.
- Grandparents are some of the most influential people in our lives.
- Be honest with yourself and your gut.
- Periodically ask yourself if all your relationships are worth it.
- There’s a fine line between making excuses and giving explanations.
- Sleeping in is as satisfying at 30 as it was in college.
- Staying up late is not as satisfying at 30 as it was in college.
- No one cares about your grey hairs.
- Actually stay in touch with people you care about. Don’t wait on them to make a move.
- Language matters. Choose your words carefully.
- When given the choice, always choose inclusivity.
- Use your voice for good.
- Old friendships really do pick up where you left off.
- Even when your work is your passion, it can still feel like work.
- Work/life balance is really work/life blending.
- Eat your vegetables.
- Take a vacation once in a while.
- Step outside your comfort zone every now and then.
- Keep trying to be better.
- When someone deserves love the least is when they need it the most. (My mom gets credit for this one)
- Someone may need to hear they need help 100 times before admitting there is a problem, but they need the first 99 to actually get there.
- Take time to enjoy the simpler humors in life. Sometimes I ride the escalator in a building on campus just because it’s novel and fun.
- Owning up to mistakes won’t taken them back, but it will fix the problem quicker and help you earn back some trust.
- That being said, forgive others for their mistakes. Holding onto grudges is unnecessary negative energy.
No matter what age you are, what milestone birthday is looming, I hope you feel content with yourself and empowered to best your best self.