Thursday, I cross into a new decade as I turn 30 years old. I used to think that by age 30 I would have it all figured out, but I laugh at that thought now. Age is simply a number, and with each number we learn some lessons. So as I kiss my 20s goodbye and welcome my 30s, here are the life lessons I have learned from the past decade.
1. Happiness First
There is this thought out there that if we are successful then we will be happy. I sincerely believe this is not true. Being happy brings happiness. Don’t wait for success to be happy, because you will spend more time waiting for happiness instead of enjoying life. Soak up the happy moments every day.
2. What matters most now, might not matter later.
I tend to over think things and get stressed out easily. I have learned and am learning to take a step back and breathe. Will this situation really matter in 5 years? 5 months? 5 minutes? If the answer is no, move on.
3. No one is perfect; we’re all works in progress.
We are all guilty of putting the best versions of ourselves out there, so don’t judge people based on their social media accounts or even compare yourself to them. We all have insecurities and problems, and some people are really good at hiding them.
4. Just be kind.
This world is in need of big helping of kindness. Do your part to bring kindness to everyone you encounter. A simple smile to a stranger may make all the difference in their day.
5. Figure out your goals, but know they can change.
Setting goals are important in life to ensure you don’t get stuck. But know that it’s okay to change your goals based on the path life takes you.
6. Travel the world.
Travel opens up your world and mind to new possibilities. Never lose your sense of wonder. Also, it’s ok to see it in small chunks of time. Check out this article if you work full-time.
7. You don’t have to have it all together.
I saw a sign the other day that adulting is like folding a fitted sheet. No one really knows how to do it, and we are just doing the best we can. And you know what? That’s okay.
8. Be weird.
That’s all I’m going to say here.
9. There’s always room to learn.
Never stop learning. In my opinion, it’s essential to be a life-long learner. If you want to know something, take the time to research it, ask questions, and figure things out with trial and error. There is no way to be an expert right away.
10. Let it go.
This is a popular saying in my life lately, and every time I think about it I have to sing the Frozen song. I take things to heart. Learn from the comments and let it roll off your back.
11. It is okay to make mistakes.
There is nothing wrong with making mistakes. As I have said before, no one is perfect. As you long as you learn from your mistakes, you are growing as an individual.
12. Wear the lipstick and be bold.
Some days you just need to put on the bright red lipstick and face the world. Sometimes we are dealt shitty days, but it helps to put on a bold exterior to make it through those days.
13. Start saving money ASAP.
Don’t wait until you are older to put away money. Even if its a few dollars here or a certain percentage of your take-home check, make sure you are investing in your future by putting money away into the savings account.
14. Be alone.
Spend time by yourself, and get to know who you are. What do you really want? What are your hopes and dreams?
15. Invest in yourself.
You are important. Your dreams and goals are important. Take the time to grow your strengths and your passions. If you care about something, make every effort to help your dreams come to fruition.
16. Build healthy habitats.
Your health is incredibly important. The earlier you start managing your health, the sooner you build the foundation for a healthy mind and body. You will thank yourself in your 30s for staying in shape in your 20s.
17. Time is your most precious resource.
Learn to manage your time. We all have the same number of hours in the day. Learn how to prioritize your time so you can get everything done and spend time with people who matter.
18. Be grateful.
Life is messy, and it is easy to get bogged down with the day-to-day. Don’t forget you are lucky and you have much to be grateful. Find at least one thing to be grateful for each day.
19. Apologizing does not make you weak.
It is hard to set your ego aside and apologize. Admit when you are wrong or have made a mistake. People will respect you for it.
20. Things don’t work out for a reason.
Rejection hurts, but it also means that the right opportunity or person is still out there. Someday you will be happy that life worked out the way it did, even if you don’t realize it in the moment.