The 30 things I've Learned Before Turning 30

I sit here on the eve of my 30th Birthday and I honestly don't know what to write. How do I sum up 30 years worth of reflection in one tiny blog post? I feel as though I went through a lot of my 20s loathing this day. I spent most of my 20s anticipating where I thought I would be in my life by my 30th Birthday...amounting my success to where society told me I should be by now. I'm done with comparing myself to others. I'm especially done with trying to live up to anyone else's expectations but my own. Getting to this point was a tremendous weight lifted off my spirit.

I learned to let go of loathing the start of my 30s awhile ago. It is my humble opinion that 30 is the new 20. I worked my ass off learning who I am and working hard in my career, and now I feel as though I can enter into the next chapter of my life where I get to enjoy the results of my hard work and self discovery (although that work is never really done). I spent a lot of time learning who I am and have come to the point in my life where I don't have the time or energy to pretend to be anyone other than ME. To be authentic within yourself is the best feeling in the world.

Looking back on the last decade, I spent the majority of my 20s taking chances and making mistakes. I was walking through the dark a lot figuring out who I was, what I wanted out of life, and what I didn't want out of life. I spent some time accepting less than what I deserved in relationships and friendships because I didn't know there was anything better.

I stumbled through ups and downs in love, learning time and time again I am stronger than I thought I was before. Not only do I think my failures in relationships have helped me grow into a better person, but I also believe each relationship has served as a lesson to help me become the person I need to be before I find my other. There's a great line from a movie called Memoirs of a Geisha where she confesses her love by telling him, "Every step I have taken has been to bring myself closer to you." I have always thought of this line at the start of a new relationship because it is so very true. I may not be where I thought I was going to be by now, but I can say with utter and complete certainty that every step I have taken has been to bring myself closer to this moment. I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

I am so excited for the next decade. I have a funny feeling I'm about to  get everything I've ever wanted.

Here are the 30 things I've learned before turning 30. Cheers to:

1- Knowing what you want and knowing when to walk away.

2- Listening to your heart when something doesn't feel right. And, trusting your heart when it does feel right.

3- Spending time by yourself and completely enjoying it because you've actually grown to become a really cool person.

4- Learning to sense when a relationship in your life feels heavy and graciously letting go.

5- Learning to let go.

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6- Knowing your worth is not a reflection of the success of your relationships.

7- Realizing your life is as big as the things you can imagine for yourself.

8- Growing from your mistakes rather than choosing to be a victim of them.

9- Saying "yes" more.

10- Being vulnerable.

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11- Choosing love over fear.

12- Being lucky enough to have friends and family I can count on. Friends I can call when I need someone who will listen. Friends who will lift me up during weakness, celebrate with me in my success, and call me out on my mistakes.

13- Road trips.

14- Adventures (See Road Trips)

15- Falling in love (See Adventures)

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16- Letting someone love me.

17- Not being afraid to let my light shine for fear of judgement.

18- Serving others with kindness and love.

19- Showing gratitude on the daily.

20- New beginnings with different endings.

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21- Never settling for content and only accepting that which makes me feel alive.

22- Learning to accept people as they are at this moment now, rather than trying to change them into who you need them to be.

23- Loving with your whole heart.

24- Choosing to see the silver lining.

25- Embracing independence.

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26- Learning the only person in this life who can save me...is me.

27-  Following your curiosity.

28- Realizing that people don't have to tell you who they are, they will show you.

29- Always choosing to see the good in people first.

30- Surrender.

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Special thanks and photo credit to Katrina Jayne Photography. I am so lucky to call you a friend.