I’m about to turn 33 and if I were to die at the same age as my father, I’d have nine years left. Less than ten years to fight away regret and my what-could-have-beens. The clichés are true, being in your 30s is head and shoulders above being a 20-something. I used to seethe at the patronising tone of chilled-out 30-year-olds telling me that, but I’m embarrassed to say that I’ve become one. Being over 30 rocks, and here is my ultimate bucket list to make sure you make the very best of it.
1. Forgive those that have caused you pain.
It’s pretty rare that people set out intentionally to hurt you, but even in those cases, holding on to the anger only damages your own soul, not theirs. It’s freeing to allow yourself to let it go, we should pity those that cause pain, they’re most often the saddest people.
2. Forgive yourself.
We hold ourselves up to the highest of standards, often forgetting that no one is perfect and mistakes and misjudgements are par for the course. Allow yourself to move forward from any errors of judgement you’ve made.
3. Say yes when you feel like saying no.
The joy of being a fully fledged grown up is that you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to, but sometimes, forcing yourself to say yes opens you up to new and awesome experiences.If you’re invited to an event and you’d rather stay at home with a microwave pizza, consider saying yes, just this once.
4. Say no when you’d automatically say yes.
Now you’re in your 30s you’re allowed to cut negative and draining people from your life. If you’re still meeting up with friends who don’t make you feel great, cut those ties and say “no thank you.” Life is too short to waste it on people who don’t make you swell with joy.
5. Learn to accept your complete self without needing to change it.
You’ve probably got a good understanding of your authentic self by now, and there will be parts that you love and parts that you like a lot less. That’s what makes us humans, and self-awareness allows you to focus on your positives and side step away from any features that are less so.
6. Learn the steps you can take to improve yourself.
It is completely possibly to accept yourself fully but still want to make changes. Maturity allows us to appreciate the difference between what we can change and what we cannot. We can work on being more kind or better educated, but we can’t stretch our legs to gain 3 inches.
7. Have more sex.
Generally, the sex you’ll have had in your 20s won’t compare to the sex you’ll be having in your 30s. You’ve both had more practice, and you have realised that any body type can be sexy. Now’s the time to leave aside your body fears and hang-ups. Sex should be fun, consensual, and awesome for everyone.
8. Have less bad sex.
When I remember the sex I had in my early 20s I wish I could go and tell myself it would get better, that this isn’t how good it gets. Now we’re older, we can get more bold. Know what you want and go get it. You deserve it.
9. Own less.
By the time we hit our 30s, we’ve acquired a lot of stuff. Most stuff we don’t use regularly, if at all, and most of it doesn’t spark joy. Owning less stuff makes keeping a tidy house much easier, and frankly life is too interesting to spend it cleaning.
10. Do more.
Sadness isn’t the opposite of happiness, boredom is. You’re too old and wise to waste your life watching 4 hours of television each evening. Focus on excitement and action and you’ll be a much happier person, with the added bonus of being more interesting at dinner parties.
Featured photo credit: sunset-m-030/Alagich Katya via albumarium.com