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Goodbye my twenties!

I celebrated (well, I had cake anyhow, I use the word “celebrated” a little more loosely than I used to) my 30th birthday earlier this month, and it’s made me a bit reflective.

It was a little harder that I expected… for a few minutes. Then I got myself together and reminded me that a birthday is a blessing, and a number is just a number. Besides, would I want to be the person I was 5 years ago? (Or ten?)

Really, really, not.

In the spirit of living less from habit and more from intent, I thought I’d see if I could come up with 30 life lessons I’ve learned in my 30 years. Turns out I’ve learned ALOT of lessons, and I probably could have written 1476 life lessons in 30 years, but it just didn’t have the same ring to it, ya?

So I’ve kept it at 30. It was an interesting thing to do, and if you journal, I think you should try it – list a few life lessons that stand out to you.

(Bonus, when I think of life in terms of lessons learned vs. lessons left to learn, 30 seems far younger than if I think about it in terms of years.)

I have learned…

♥ 1~ To say please and thank you. Whether I felt like it or not.

♥ 2~ To Pray.

♥ 3~ That my parents are on my side. When I have children I will be on their side, and I will make sure they know it.

♥ 4~ To tie my shoes. Wrong, apparently. I am 30 years old and I still make bunny ears. No one ever told me there was another way until I was about 13, and I was already set in my ways. I’ve also learned that this doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. Phew.

♥ 5~ To love to read. (The Ridiculous Race is hands down my favorite laugh out loud book in the history of the universe -why isn’t it more well known?! The most life changing book I have ever read was possibly If God Is Good by Randy Alcorn.)

♥ 6~ A haircut is not permanent. Therefore a haircut is not life or death. Same for a hair color or a bad perm. (Again, phew!)

♥ 7~ There’s things I’m not good at. That doesn’t mean I should never do those things. Dancing, singing, math… being social. It’s ok to not be good at everything, as long as you keep trying. It also doesn’t mean that you’re not good at ANYTHING.

♥ 8~ Like writing. I’m good at writing. And I enjoy it.

♥ 9~ To tell the difference between a boy prawn and a girl prawn. Yes, that’s something you can do. The world is FULL of amazing and interesting things. Learn about them; be constantly curious.

♥ 10~ Three drinks is enough. Be very careful with more than three drinks. More than three drinks will probably make you will look bad and do things you will regret.

♥ 11~ Speaking of regret, regret is real. Whoever coined the phrase “no regrets” (or joins in the whole philosophy of no regret) is living in serious denial. Or maybe they just never leave their house, don’t really care about other people, or don’t have dreams. That doesn’t mean we have to LIVE in regret of the stupid things we’ve done, just that we should learn from those things, and be a little mindful of our actions in the future.

♥ 12~ Apologize. Don’t ever underestimate the power of an apology. (Forgive quickly too. Someday, that thing you might regret is not being willing to forgive.)

♥ 13~ God answers prayers. Sometimes He says yes, sometimes His answer is no, and sometimes we just think His answer is no. Some prayers take years to answer.

♥ 14~ Life keeps moving forward regardless of whether you are ready for it to move forward or not.

♥ 15~ It’s ok if everyone doesn’t think you’re awesome. (Sometimes other people are wrong.)

♥ 16~ Once in a while I’m the one who’s wrong. (I like to think it’s not all that often!) It’s good to have opinions. It’s even better to change your opinions when you’re wrong. You do not have to be who you were once.

♥ 17~ Sometimes you need to close the book on things you feel aren’t finished. You can’t spend your life chasing people or plans that are going no where. Know when to move on, know when to give up. (And yes, I’ve learned that there IS a time for giving up.) But when you give up, own it. Don’t be wishy washy.

♥ 18~ Put a decent anti-virus on your computer. Seriously. Just do it. I can’t even describe to you the amount of money and headache that can be saved by having a decent anti-virus. ESPECIALLY if you are thinking about starting a blog or if your computer is important to your livelihood.

♥ 19~ Perception is NOT necessarily reality. Just because we think something doesn’t make it true, and we would all do well to remember that all the time. When I am struggling with anxiety and I believe all sorts of horrible things are happening, 99.9% of the time I AM WRONG.

♥ 20~ The heart is deceptive above all things (Jeremiah 17:9). (Probably why perception is not necessarily reality!) You’d think since it’s right out of the Bible I would have just known it was true and would’t have had to learn it the hard way… but apparently not. I was all caught up in the “follow your heart” culture. Do not follow your heart. The heart is deceptive above all things.

♥ 21~ Do things even if you are afraid.

♥ 22~ I am more capable than I ever imagined. (I can even keep my house clean when I put my mind to it!) I just need to decide to do something and then figure out the way to do it. (Like with blogging. I’m sitting here thinking I have no idea what I’m doing, and yet… I’m doing it. Successfully.)

♥ 23~ Don’t sign papers with people you don’t know. This might seem obvious now, but there was a time in my life when I guess it wasn’t.

♥ 24~ There are crappy people in the world, but there are amazing people here too. (Just in case the one you’re dealing with is crappy, see above.)

♥ 25~ Make time to sit and talk with people, REALLY sit and talk, without thinking of other things or rushing or looking at your phone. To ask them about their day, their lives, their thoughts on things. Don’t miss out on those amazing people because you were too busy.

♥ 26~ Family is the most important thing that God has given us and whatever effort it takes to have a solid relationship with them is paramount. Because one day, we will all die. But not today.

♥ 27~ Marriage is worth the effort. It’s hard, and sometimes the better comes after the worse. But sharing your life with someone is a great blessing from God.

♥ 28~ There are questions we won’t have answers to in this lifetime.

♥ 29~ I don’t need a whole bunch of money (or things) to be happy. There is so much joy to be found in living a simple life, working hard and taking it slow.

♥ 30~ Plant flowers, because it’s worth the effort. And take pictures, vacations, and go for a run for the same reason.

30 Life lessons in 30 years