Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving

Today is the day, people. I. AM. THIRTY. I knew this day would come but didn’t really think about it. The thing is, no matter how old I get, I still see myself as roughly sixteen. Back when a stack of Vogues, Harper’s, and Seventeen magazines were my bedside table and I made handmade outfit schedules each week. I don’t want to brag but sixteen me was pretty much the coolest. I remember thinking that thirty would feel old. I also thought that thirty would feel accomplished. It does feel a bit old and I do feel a bit old but it also feels like a brand new door is opening.

It wasn’t until this past year that I finally started to feel like an adult (well, just a little bit). This year felt trans formative and clear. I haven’t felt this way in a long time, at least not through my whole twenties.

My twenties were a bit rocky, in the way that being in your twenties is supposed to be rocky. I searched for jobs, found a job, figured out my passion, and started my career. I searched for love, found some duds, discovered the real thing and married it. I had some of the best moments of my life in my twenties and also suffered some of the worst losses.

Something in me must have known that I needed to prepare for a new decade of my life this year. I started to let things go that I didn’t need and opened up for the future. This clarity also help me reflect on all the things I learned in my twenties.

Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years
Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years
Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years
Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years
Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years
Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years
Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years
Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving: What I learned in 30 years

top: similar, shorts: jcrew factory, slides: nine west, sunglasses: LOFT

Accept where you are right at this moment.

Since the age of eighteen, and probably even before, I was always looking to the future. Deciding where I was going to go to college, what I wanted to major in, and then what I wanted to do when I graduated. I was wrapped up in the future and planning and dreaming.

Now I’m not advocating to give up on dreams and planning and thinking about the future. But it’s good to stop every once in awhile and take in where you are right at that moment. I vividly remember a moment where I was standing in my classroom and looked around and realized that, this, this is where I was meant to be.

Very few people get it right the first time. Very few people live that picture-perfect life. Accept the messy parts and the hard parts and all the things in between.

Sometimes you have to let go to gain more.

I’m a stick-with-it kind of person. I like to see things through whether it’s a work obligation, a relationship, or a simple craft project. This is both a good thing and a bad thing. I have done a lot, even those things that I hated doing but were good in the end. It’s not good when it means sticking with things that are bad for you in the long run. Whether it’s a toxic friendship or awful work situation, sometimes you have to let it go. Letting go opens you up to new and even better possibilities.

It's okay to want something different.

I’ll keep my diatribe on this one simple: two summers ago everyone and their mother was sporting Birkenstock sandals. Like even my most unfashionable friend was sporting a pair. I personally think they are awful and make feet look wide as boats. Walking through DSW I saw a rose gold pair and suddenly I was contemplating a pair because, well, they were “in” right now. I didn’t buy them and realized: Why do I need to do whatever thinks is right or cool? I wear two different color polishes on my toes and fingers, I hate sneakers, and I loved high-waisted pants before they were cool.

Life is about figuring out what makes you happy. We spend way too much time trying to fit in. Especially now with social media and advertising constantly telling you what to like. But find what you love and do it every single day.

Appreciate who you are becoming.

Ten years ago, I was a different person. Not better, not worse, just different. The twenty year old part of me is still here (just like that fashion-loving sixteen year old still lives on) but there are so many twists and turns that shaped the person I am. Some days I wonder if I had done something differently, would I be a better person? More accomplished, more loving, more interesting, more everything. But you cannot live this way.

Every little decision you make, good or bad, has a part in making you an awesome person. You may not be running a tech start-up or walking the runway or climbing the ladder in corporate America. Or maybe you are. Whatever you are, appreciate you. Appreciate your uniqueness because being the best