30 years, 30 lessons

As I turn 30, I really am amazed and proud of how much I have grown over these years. Besides the associations society attaches to age – that we should be at a certain place in life with respect to having a spouse, home, family, steady job or otherwise –  I feel younger and better than I have in years. There are always ups and downs, but none that can make up for the friendships, experiences and lessons that every year brings.

Looking back, I don’t like to think of the would have, could have or should have’s because they just don’t matter. I know that everything happened as it should have, no matter how painful at times, to get me to where I am today. We can’t change the past. But we can change how we approach today. So I wanted to share 30 pieces of “wisdom” I’ve gained in my first 30 years that I find relevant at present. I have certainly learned many more than 30 lessons, but these are the ones that stick out to me today. Some you may have heard me talk about before, some will be further expanded on in the future, and others are straight to the point 😉 In no particular order:

  1. Love. Without hesitation. Don’t be afraid to love because you don’t know if the other person will love you back in the same way, don’t know how it will end, or don’t want to get hurt or hurt someone else should it not work out. In doing so, you’re withholding one of the greatest gifts in life and preventing yourself from receiving it in return.
  2. Let go. Seriously, let that shit go. You don’t need it. Physically, mentally, emotionally. All that excess weighs us down from being truly free. Things are just things. Expectations are often limiting stories. And emotions are meant to be felt, rather than bottled up inside.
  3. Where there is force, there is resistance. Focus on flow.
  4. You have to be open, in order to receive.
  5. We are all more alike than we are different. I have found that at our core, we all desire companionship, to feel loved and cared for. And to live a life of purpose, where we give of our unique gifts and talents in ways that bring us joy and fulfillment, while also contributing to a greater good.
  6. If you don’t believe in yourself, you will never get where you want to go.
  7. Only we can own our life, or others will use us to benefit theirs.
  8. Self-care is not selfish.
  9. Pay attention to what you loved as a child, before you were told what to love.
  10. Fear less, live more. The worse case scenario is usually not as bad as you think.
  11. Our worth is inherentand not determined by our education, job, looks, success, failure, popularity or otherwise.
  12. Don’t pick at your face.
  13. Less is more. Except when it comes to nourishment…then more is always better 🙂
  14. Pay attention to the power of languaging (more to come on this!). The words you speak, write and think say a lot about your belief system, and in turn, how you live your life. For example, one word I generally want to eliminate from my language is but. I found myself using this frequently and it showed my belief that I couldn’t have two supposedly conflicting things…rather can they co-exist in harmony? What if I replace but with and? How does that feel, and also change my perception? I tried it and all I can say is wow.
  15. Notice without judgement.
  16. Hell yes or no. I read this once and it stuck. Almost every decision in life can be made by asking if it is a “HELL YES”. If not, it’s a NO. It doesn’t have to be drastic, like hell yes I want to marry this person after a first date. It can simply be a hell yes I want to go on a second date 😉
  17. Follow your joy. Follow what feels right. Deep down you know.
  18. Movement should be a gift to your body, not a punishment.
  19. Be okay being alone with yourself.
  20. Don’t be so hard on yourself. We’re all doing our best in every given moment.
  21. We’re always exactly where we’re meant to be.
  22. Care less about what other people think and more about how you feel.
  23. You can’t please everyone. Nor should you.
  24. We are all unique and gifted in our own way.
  25. Another persons beauty (or someone’s acknowledgement of) does not detract from your own.
  26. Commit. And take action. Or nothing will change.
  27. Build your support system among family, friends, colleagues and more. People who love and believe in you. Also find a coach or someone to talk to who is not your family or friend. They will challenge you to grow in new and essential ways.
  28. Look someone in the eye. Engage. Pay attention. Also smile 🙂
  29. Slow down. I’ve had a lot of very clear reminders of this, often involving public transportation ha. Such as when rushing to catch a subway and almost falling down an entire flight of concrete steps. Or, again, when rushing to catch a train and not validating my ticket before getting on, and of course the “train police” hop on right as the doors close and I get a nice fine. The next train would have come in 4 minutes. 4 minutes! Really? Slow down. They journey is also much more enjoyable when you do.
  30. Life truly is precious and every day is a gift. Treat it as such.

And one more for good measure 😉

31. Challenge your belief system and what you think about yourself, what you want in life, whether or not you can have it, and why. Beliefs are just thoughts, repeated over and over, so that they become engrained as truths, when maybe that is not the case. Change one small thought and you can change your life.

Thank you for all the love and support over the past 30 years, you bring so much joy to my life <3

Yours jenuinely, xoxo

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