Does anyone know that Tim McGraw song, My Next Thirty Years? Well, if you don’t, you will shortly, and you’re welcome! This song has been on my mind all week because… today I turn thirty. Honestly, I thought that I’d be a bit miserable on my thirtieth birthday, but, instead, today I find that I’m incredibly grateful. Did I accomplish everything on my 30 before 30 list? Of course I didn’t. Does that mean that I haven’t had an incredible life to date? I sure have. It’s not been without its struggles (um, hello 2015/2016), but I am so very lucky.
I have a great family, a supportive husband who is also my best friend, and a kid that is teaching me more about life every single day. Today, I’m not looking back, I’m looking forward and the future is bright. The future is what I make of it. And here are the lessons I’m taking forward with me in my next thirty years, thanks to Mr. McGraw.
“the ending of an era, the turning of a page”
It absolutely is the end of an era, and that ain’t no bad thing. I feel like these days your twenties are full of more stress than ever before. There is the pressure to figure out what you want to do with your life, to find your mate, to buy a house, to essentially plan your life down to a ‘t’. Life doesn’t happen that way, but that’s not the impression you get when you’re 21.
My new plan is to turn the page and enjoy the journey.
In a recent interview I was asked if I had any regrets in life. I honestly answered that I don’t. I’ve done some stupid things, but I’ve learned from them. The one ‘regret’ I have is that I wish I could go back and change my philosophy on life. Instead of stressing so much, I wish I could have appreciated the journey a bit more, the challenges, the setbacks. Well, I can’t go back, but I can embrace that philosophy in my next thirty years.
“cry a little less, laugh a little more”
This one isn’t an easy one, as I tend to be a crier, but I plan to focus on feeling my feelings, then moving through them. Have a good cry, then see it for what it is.
I was just reading a great book today where the author talks about a hilarious way for dealing with negative self-talk. When you have those moments where you tell yourself that you suck or that you’re not good enough, the author suggests that you then repeat these words but as though you’re singing in an opera with a wide hoop skirt. Then, and perhaps only then, you’ll see those words for the melodramatic negative self-talk that they are. Find the humor. Move through it.
I also plan to take this mantra and simply embrace more joy in my life. Everybody says it, and having a child has made it that much more acute for me, but we get one go around at life. I might as well enjoy it all. From dance parties while I wash dishes to rocking out in traffic. Being angry gets you nowhere, and laugh lines are sexy.
“maybe now I’ve conquered all my adolescent fears, I’ll do it better in my next thirty years”
What this milestone has given me more than anything is perspective. I wouldn’t quite say that I’ve conquered all of my adolescent fears, but I sure can put them into their appropriate place. Peoples’ opinions about me are none of my business, so I shouldn’t waste time worrying about them. I should set my own standards and expectations of myself and live up to them.
I also know in my core-though of course the little gremlin likes to sit on my shoulder-that it’s so much more important to be healthy than to focus on losing weight. My body is my body. It’s not that of Tyra Banks or Gigi Hadid, it’s mine. I just need to keep it in working order for the next thirty years and be grateful that it allows me to do all the things that I love in life. My body lets me play with my son, chase him around, walk in the fresh air and feel the joy of swimming (when I get the chance). My body is a gift, and I’m going to start treating her that way!
I’ve got a lot to look forward to and a lot to be grateful for. Another thing I’m immensely grateful for? The tribe of folks who follow my blog. I appreciate it more than you know. And the best birthday gift that you can give to a blogger? It’s to recommend their blog to friends, family or colleagues. If you know anyone that might appreciate my work, I would be so grateful if you would share this blog with them.