Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Trading My Twenties for the Thirties

Well, tomorrow is the big 3-0. Honestly winter has been hard, but I am thankful for all the support of my friends and family that have helped make this winter better--and easier than any I can remember. Although, I have been dreading this birthday for months, today I can truly say that I am excited about entering a new decade. I have learned many life lessons from my twenties, and I feel so much more settled than I remember feeling when I was 19 turning 20. I am thankful for this, and I am ready to trade my twenties for my thirties. The twenties were hard and extremely painful at times. If you've read any of my blog (I am sorry--it has been FOREVER since I've written), you have read about many of the trades I have made in my twenties. But, I feel stronger almost every day, and I am glad to be here--to be alive, no matter what. I am sincerely ready to trade the ashes that I experienced in my twenties, for the beauty of a fresh start, and an amazing new decade! Hello, thirties! What a gift! 

So, to help me remember the good and valuable lessons I have learned in my twenties, I have compiled a list of things I've learned so far in life. Hope you enjoy!

Here it goes:

30 Things I’ve Learned in 30 Years
  1. The best things in life are not things at all—love, safety, peace, gratitude, joy, contentment and forgiveness are far better than anything material (except maybe marshmallows—those are amazing).

  2. The older I get, the less I care about acceptance from others.

  3. Authenticity is always better than pretending to be something you’re not. That’s exhausting. Own your truth. Your story is beautiful!

  4. Being perfect is overrated. I am happy to say that today I am a self-proclaimed “defeated perfectionist”.

  5. I’ve learned to love the “messy” parts of myself. Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love writes, “Embrace the glorious mess that you are.” And as Jennifer Lawrence says in the film Silver Linings Playbook, “There will always be a part of me that is dirty and sloppy. But I like that. Just like all the other parts of myself.” It’s just another part of my story.

  6. It doesn’t bother me that I can count on one hand the number of true friends I have. Some friends are only in your life for a season and you grow apart from naturally. That is beautiful. Some friends turn out not to be headed in the same direction as you are, and it is ok to let them go without regret. That can be difficult but beautiful too.

  7. Being vulnerable with these true friends is essential to growth. “Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren't always comfortable but they are never weakness.” (Brene Brown) Be brave.

  8. Family is forever. Although we may not agree on many things, we love each other unconditionally (even if sarcasm is our “love language”: ). I know my family will always be there for me.

  9. Kindness is necessary. Random acts of kindness are fulfilling. Doing something for someone else when you are down is always uplifting. (Life lesson from Mom)

  10. It's OK to fall and to need help. I'm not ashamed to admit that I go to therapy. P.S. I absolutely ADORE my therapist. She changed my life forever. Seriously, asking for help is a huge step in healing. Some things you just can't "pray more" to fix.

  11. Laughter truly is the best medicine. Truvy had it right in Steal Magnolias, “Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.”

  12. Crying is necessary too, and does not indicate weakness. Crying is good for the soul and is a sign of being human. (See above)

  13. All life is precious—from the unborn to the elderly. Each day is a gift. Growing older is a privilege denied to many.

  14. Cats are the best. I’m sorry. They just are. Also pajamas. ; )

  15. Reflection and meditation are essential to life. Being a human being, not a “human doing,” is essential to happiness.

  16. Rest is important. Rest is good; even God rested. Don't feel lazy or guilty for resting, period.

  17. Learning to say “no” is crucial. Setting boundaries is necessary. Doing both without guilt is a great accomplishment.

  18. Forgiveness frees you. But you need to learn when to walk away. You do not owe anyone your peace and happiness.

  19. God undoubtedly can turn our mistakes into something for His glory. “He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning,[and] festive praise instead of despair.” (Isaiah 61:3)

  20. Splurging every once in a while is OK. You do not have to “deserve it” to treat yourself. Life is meant to be enjoyed.

  21. Do not wish your life away—only living for the weekends and holidays. Enjoy the here and now. Find joy in the ordinary.

  22. Life is too short to stay in a stressful job. Work is not meant to be your life. Your profession should not define you.

  23. Never have my mother's words rang truer, “It is better to be happy and alone, than with someone and miserable.”

  24. You can NEVER read too much. Smart people read, bottom line.

  25. Not agreeing with other people is part of life. Acceptance and tolerance are basic human qualities that we must practice daily.

  26. It is never my place to judge. It is only my job to love. The world does not need any more critics.

  27. Clutter, both physically and mentally, is draining. Learning to live simply is always the best option. Quality over quantity any day.

  28. Religion and politics are divisive and most of the time pointless to argue about. Be like Jesus; love others—that is all.

  29. My life and purpose are different from yours. It may not look like what the Church or world think it should at times, but it is my path. And, if I live content within my journey, I can experience freedom, joy, and peace. I have my own unique contribution to make and there is no one else like me. Remember, “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

  30. “My entire life [so far] can be described in one sentence: It didn't go as planned and that's okay.” (Rachel Wolchin)
Shoo! Thanks for sticking that post out--hope something spoke to your heart and you found at least one thing you could relate to and trade with me. Now, let's bring on the 30s!!! #yotto (you only turn thirty once) ☺