Thirty feels like a slap in the face and a welcoming hug. An awkward age of becoming old and departing young. The point at which the sheer number of birthday candles can be considered an incendiary hazard. And while I don’t yet get the benefits of a senior discount, I am thankful and excited for this milestone and the new decade.
Reflecting on the past ten years, I can summarize most of it into one word: discovery.
In my early twenties, I was lost, passionate, and hungry. I was ready for new adventures. I began discovering myself and uncovering the things that truly excited me. My interest in art and storytelling led me to drawing, writing, photography, and filmmaking. I discovered my love for trail running, the outdoors, and the joy of reading. Ten years of lessons, missteps, success, and failure brought me to where I am today.
There were so many positives from my twenties. I met my soulmate, got married, built long-lasting friendships, became an uncle, ran ultramarathons, traveled to several countries, lived in Boston, and found a job where I can utilize a lot of my creative skills.
However, the past decade also had its challenges too. I lived a majority of it in financial stress, I lost friends, I was laid off during the pandemic, several close relatives had cancer, and there were disagreements with my family that pulled at relationships.
In no way do I have life figured out, but I’m realizing life’s highs and lows are equally important. Bad times give perspective, and good times give gratitude.
As I step into my thirties, I’m taking the following advice and lessons I’ve learned along the way — many of which I continue to improve upon in the upcoming years:
- Communication is key
- Spend money on experiences
- Don’t worry about what people are thinking
- Regularly talk/spend time with family
- College doesn’t guarantee success
- Regularly invest
- Stay present
- Consistently step out of the comfort zone
- Consistently take time to reset and realign
- Never skimp on recovery
- Never skimp on strength training
- Never skimp on good, healthy food
- Never skimp on sleep
- Ego is the enemy
- Comparison is a killer
- Don’t take things for granted
- Journal every day
- Say no
- It’s either a Hell Yeah or No
- Ask for help
- Failure is a part of the process
- Small progress every day
- Read everyday
- Approach life with love in your heart
- Stay curious
- Always question
- Don’t forget to have fun
And before I end, I want to share a short excerpt from the Dr. Seuss classic, One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish :
“Today is gone. Today was fun.
Tomorrow is another one.
Every day, from here to there,
funny things are everywhere.”
Here’s to another year around the sun!