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Thriving @ 30

Life truly just happens. One day you are 15 years old watching “13 Going on 30” and then you wake up and you are a week away from turning 30 years old and what once felt like a very distant future is now a looming, inescapable reality.

In the timing of life, we are all equals – we get 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year, give or take. Life, at least this one, does not go on forever (thankfully there is another life that does!) and it is a reality that we all face.

Gone were the days when you think that the future stretched into an abyss of forever, now you are confronted with the reality that though life could be very long for you and your loved ones, it will all end one day.

This reality is humbling because it makes you realize that you are a) not immortal and b) every moment is essential. This reality, though still a very distant reality, constantly makes me question the essence of life. It makes me take a step back and be cautious about the choices I am making and truly makes me prioritize what’s important in life and what really isn’t.

Though depressing, we can choose to look at still the many opportunities ahead of us to live the life we have always wanted. To know about the brevity of life is a blessing because it allows us to weave through the noise and focus on what’s important.

What does it really take to be 30 and thriving? I am no life coach or expert but these nuggets may be useful to your own journey and help us all thrive together, whatever the age.

Own your story. As I was writing this article, I sent a message to a good friend that said, “Do not be ashamed of your story for it is uniquely yours and how you are overcoming it will be an inspiration to those around you.”

In that same breath, no matter what you have done, what has been done to you and the mistakes you think you have made – never feel ashamed of it. Instead be proud of how you have overcome every obstacle and how you have grown from it. Everything in our lives is connected by a purpose planned for us by God and He is not surprised at all by our choices. All is well and everything is working together for good.

Never be ashamed to put you first. The buzz on self-care today sometimes dilutes the true essence of the word but may we never forget its importance. Mental health is critical and to manage the stressors of life, both big and small, is essential in being the best versions of ourselves. We have to value our health above everything else that tempts the peace in our lives. Nothing and nobody is worth our peace of mind.

Your life is meaningful even if it is not Instagram-worthy.

Ah, the joys of social media – it allows us to explore and learn new things but it also allows us to compare to a million Joneses from all over the world. This can be very daunting – especially when you are not quite living such a picture perfect life but here’s news for you: no one else is either. Some of you might think that your life is less than simply because you’re not a) famous b) wealthy or c) married to someone who is because you know the people who have all those things will be the first to tell you that it is not the secret to happiness.

Love your life for what it is. Trust that as you focus on your life and how you want to live it, it will get to where it’s supposed to be. Embrace your life, do not be defined by what you do or who you are with, and most importantly, love because at the end of the day, love is the answer to most things. Love for God, love for others, and love for self. Once we choose love – life finds a way.

Here’s to a thriving year for all of us for the best is yet to come!

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