So…the big day has come and gone. And I am officially into a new decade. 5 days in and so far, so good. I promised last week that there would be a part two of the post. You guessed it – this is it!
Part one was all about what turning 30 doesn’t mean, so this week I’m turning things on their head and telling you all about what turning 30 means/why it’s awesome (If you read before this might seem a bit repetitive – as a lot of these will probably be flipsides of all my list of “nots” – oh well). So far, being 30 is great because…
- You’re old enough to know better (well, not all the time, but about a lot of things at least).
- You don’t need to care what everyone else thinks.
- You know yourself, who you are, and you own it.
- You’re old enough to be considered an “adult,” but young enough to not always act like it.
- You’re ok with not having all the answers.
- You’ve done enough different things that you’ve built up your friend circles and social networks with a bunch of really cool people that you like hanging out with a lot.
- You know that family means everything, but at the same time, understand and appreciate the importance of friendships that offer perspective outside of that.
- You’ve spent enough time working that you have at least some idea what you’re doing, and have at least somewhat earned the title of “young professional.”
- You’ve earned enough life experience to be a little set in your ways, but are still young enough to be open to learn.
- That you’ve tried and failed at a lot of things, and have thus learned that failure isn’t the end of the world, so you’re more willing to try.
- You know better than to take life, or yourself, too seriously.
- You can appreciate the value of getting out, doing things and enjoying life – and staying in, doing nothing, and watching Netflix – and know that both are important at times.
- You have a respect for yourself that your younger self never could – who you are, what you’ve been through, and what you can do.
- You know that eating your feelings isn’t a great long term coping strategy, but that sometimes, ice cream really can fix things
- You’ve made peace (or at least are a lot closer to it) with things about your body that aren’t going to change, and are a lot more accepting of who you are now.
- You’ve realized that being skinny (or whatever physical ideal you chased as a young twenty-something) isn’t the be-all, end-all, and that happiness comes to people of all different sizes, especially with self acceptance.
- You’ve picked your priorities in life and proceeded accordingly, with no apologies needed if other people don’t agree or accept them.
- Fashion-wise, you’ve learned what works for you and what doesn’t, and are young and cool enough to sometimes follow trends, but also old enough to have your favourites, and have no shame in clinging to them and eschewing what’s new and hot if it doesn’t suit your style.
- You’ve been around long enough to trust your judgement, and waste less time second-guessing your decisions than your younger self did.
- Speaking of trusting your judgement, you are slowly starting to outgrow your impostor syndrome.
- You’re more at peace with the fact that life doesn’t come wrapped up in a neat little package, and that it’s more a series of unresolved endings – but that doesn’t mean you can’t find your own inner peace.
- You’ve recognized that being cool is both overrated and a relative term – and are content to make your own way and be your own cool.
- You have discovered that some relationships are worth your time, others leave you spent, and have grown your powers of discernment in determining which is which.
- You still have dreams, but instead of chasing our dreams, you’ve realized the power in working towards your goals.
- You have learned to find happiness even through disappointment or when things don’t turn out like you’ve expected.
- Speaking of happiness – you’ve learned that life is much more about creating it than finding it.
- You’ve learned that different does not equal bad and that a life that wasn’t what you planned can still be pretty amazing and fulfilling.
- Instead of worrying about being “good enough” for everyone else, you choose to focus on being good to everyone else.
- You know that there are some things you are actually really good at, and that it’s ok to accept praise/compliments about those things.
- You’ve discovered that self-awareness, self-knowledge and self-love are some of life’s greatest gifts; and possession of them is surprisingly freeing.
I hope you’re getting the sense that while 30 is awesome and amazing it by no means means (no that’s not a typo) that I’ve “arrived” or am somehow at the pinnacle of knowledge and experience – hardly! I’ve just reached another new age, and new levels of self awareness – but I’ve still got a ways to go!
For those of you out there in the thirty and up club – I’m pleased to be among your ranks. And for those of you at any age – what has surprised you most? What are your takeaways? I’m all about sharing the wealth – so don’t be shy to comment below and bestow your wisdom on the rest of us.