30 Things I Learned In 30 Years

6 months down the line, I’ve finally accepted turning the big 3-0.

When I was younger, I thought I would have my whole life sorted by the time I turned 30. I don’t think I’m alone in that mindset, am I? I had it all planned out in my mind – I’d meet the man of my dreams and he’d sweep me off my feet. We’d get married; I’d wear a big fancy white dress and have a million bridesmaids that I’d been best friends with since school. We’d have a huge house as a result of us both being hugely successful at our jobs, and when we were ready we’d have a couple of kids who would be the most well-behaved offspring on the planet.

It’s funny how things work out (or don’t), isn’t it?

If you ask a kid’s opinion, 30 is the age of an old person. You’re done. Over the hill. Your best days are behind you. And since turning 25, I’ve had a real complex about getting older. Achieving those milestones.

I may not have hit many of those milestones yet, but in my thirty years of existence I have learned a thing or two about the world. Some of the points below come from personal experience, others are observations from family, friends or even strangers around me.

Self-love is the most important kind of love
If you don’t have that, no other kind will ever be enough.

Make time for hobbies and interests
The fun stuff is always first to be sacrificed when things get tough – don’t let it!

People learn in different ways…
Figure out how you learn most effectively. Then remember that other people aren’t necessarily the same.

… And grieve in different ways
There’s no right or wrong way to deal with loss. As long as you deal with it when you are ready to.

Those annoying group work assignments don’t finish with education
Team-working is everywhere now. So even if you aren’t a team player, make sure you try!

Diabetes isn’t a death sentence
I’ve said this one a million times. It’s really not, as long as you look after yourself.

Don’t have a ‘type’
I have a ‘type’. Guess how many people of that ‘type’ I’ve dated seriously? Zero.

Just because your friends aren’t doing it, doesn’t mean you can’t
Trying new classes alone is one of the most empowering things I’ve ever done.

Listen to your body
If something doesn’t feel right, book an GP appointment. For your own peace of mind, if nothing else.

High-end makeup is often much better than drugstore
Not always, but often. Worth the investment, in my opinion. Not necessarily the most expensive of everything, but a little bit of luxury!

Own your own style…
I still have the same ‘jeans and hoodie’ style I had 10 years ago. I’m lazy. It’s comfy.

…Or follow the trends you like!
Who cares if everyone else is wearing it? As long as you like it, that’s what matters!

Your music tastes will change
I still love All Time Low, and AFI, and Good Charlotte. I also loved Britney way before them, and still do! But I also listen to a lot more chart music these days (thanks to the car radio).

Try new things that interest you…
I’ve always wanted to try photography properly, and I’m hoping to be able to give it a good go this summer!

…But you won’t be good at them all.
I accepted a long time ago that I’ll never be able to draw or paint well. I’m hopeless.

Volunteering isn’t just good for the CV
I’ve worked with a few charities over the past couple of years – and it’s been so emotionally rewarding. There are so many opportunities out there – get looking for something that interests you!

Put your phone down
I’ve become so much more aware recently of people being engrossed in their phones whilst in company. Enjoy some time in physical company, and you’ll build a much better relationship with those people.

Always have a Plan B
Things go wrong all the time. They fuck everything up. Sometimes your fault, sometimes not. But if you have a contingency plan, there’s so much less stress involved when they do go wrong!

You can’t fix everything
This was a hard lesson to learn. You can’t control everything; therefore, you can’t, and don’t have to, feel responsible for fixing everything. If it’s meant to be fixed, it’ll be fixed.

Invest in a good moisturiser
Figure out your skin type, and find a moisturiser that works for you. The assistants on counters can be so helpful with this *cough* KIEHL’S!!!

Embrace your quirks
We all do daft things. Love them. And find someone else who does, too.

Some people just aren’t meant to swim
That would be me. No matter how many people tell me they’ll teach me. Just NO.

Admit when you’re wrong, or don’t know something
There’s no shame in either. In fact, you’ll get more respect from me for admitting rather than bullshitting. That wasn’t supposed to rhyme.

Everyone fucks up sometimes
We all do. No one is perfect. Give yourself a pat on the back – you’re trying!

Let the salon sort your hair
Unless you understand peroxide and dyes, don’t risk it. I always have my hair bleached professionally – I couldn’t live with myself if I ruined it!

As soon as you hit uni, your school grades mean nothing
Honestly, I got straight 1s in my Standard Grades and 2 As and 2 Bs in my Highers. Then I got an HNC and HND. But now that I’m in uni, no one cares. Most of it was useless anyway (not that uni isn’t, by the way…)

Just eat the damn ice cream
You want a treat, but you’ll feel guilty if you indulge. Sod it! Don’t punish yourself for allowing yourself one little pleasure in life. Go for extra sprinkles while you’re at it.

You’ll always have haters
No one is liked by everyone. Hell, half the people who claim to like someone don’t actually like them. Don’t let those who dislike you drag you down. They’re not worth your energy.

Give yourself some breathing space
Down time is good time. Whether you’re watching crappy TV, losing yourself in a book, or just painting your nails – relaxation time is SO important.

Don’t take what you have for granted
Friendships, relationships, lifestyles – everything can change in a split second. Cherish the things you have.

What life lessons have you learned?

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