Some people seem to waltz into their 30th year of life in complete grace, success, and self assurance. I’m not sure I have all of those things. What I’m pretty confident that I have is a sense of humility and healthy expression of vulnerability. As for the rest, well, those are all a work in progress. Here’s are a few learnings from Turning 30, so far:
I laugh sometimes when I think about the lifetimes I feel I’ve had the privilege to experience. Working in banking after finishing school, leading a social media team. Moving into starting my own agency / business. Joining a start up, selling it, and moving to New York. Working for Sean Combs aka Mr. C. aka Puff Daddy. These things don’t seem real, but a somewhat distant memory. What remains real is the fact that these things happened, and I’ve become the person I am today, because of these chapters.
To say that you’re moving into a new chapter of life seems cliché. It is. Really, it’s just another day, another year, another segment of life that isn’t really differentiated by anything other than a timestamp and a number. Yet here we are, or rather, here I am, wrought with fret about whether or not I did it right. Here’s what I’m pretty sure I’ve got down though:
I’m confident in who I am
It’s not to say that you become set in your ways – anyone and everyone has the propensity to be able to be a student of life. But you probably have a good idea of what you do and don’t like, who you like surrounding yourself with. And more often than not, this creates a healthy shortcut for when you have any decision making or when you refrain from things that aren’t good for you.
Ownership is the most important thing. And shedding things that you no longer need (like an ego or caring too much about something that doesn’t matter).
I have great friends and people around me
By now, I’ve weeded through the shitty. It’s awful to say, but people that join you at the beginning of your journey, aren’t really always the ones that stay. Maybe your priorities have changed. Maybe your interests are vastly different. Honestly, even having a family changes whether or not you see someone as often. Embrace, accept, and move on.
It’s a lot easier to say NO
I don’t feel the guilt associated with saying no any longer. It’s actually a healthy development that I’ve become more aware of lately. This comes with age, time, and too many instances of saying YES and regretting it. Say no, feel good about it, and really don’t try to look back. That’s where the cognitive dissonance emerges. Don’t go there, no matter what you do.
I’ve seen a lot more of the world
This year I decided to uneasily just work…part time really. I took on projects here and there, knowing that I had a bigger idea at hand. This phase of life isn’t easy to go through, because you’re not sure how much of your input is going to end up with a result. It also means that you’re openly deciding not to be as excited about material things. You value experiences, and spending what money you have on them.
I’ve been working since I was 15. Taking a break at 30 doesn’t seem so unreasonable. Getting to see more of this beautiful planet, and meet more people, is a wonderful blessing. Take it and run.