10 Things I've Learned: 31st Birthday Edition
I love celebrating, and nothing gets me more excited than my birthday (and christmas, and disney world). Now that i am fully in my 30s and not just 30 ( there is a difference trust me), i thought i would start the tradition of sharing the 10 lessons learned thoughout my 30th year.
Lesson 1 : Your going to make it afterall.
I work as a school psychologist in middle and elementary schools. And every year, there comes a point when i think i am going to pass out from exhaustion, or listen to the voice that tells me to run away from my work responsibilities (Adulting am i right?). Every year I wonder how i am going to make it, how i will work through my caseload, and how i can make a differnce. Thankfully, with enough starbucks matcha latte, i make it through.
Lesson 2 : When in doubt, Therapy.
It would be very hypocrital for me to say i am anti therapy, given that i am in the mental health profession. This past year i learned how important it is to reach out for professional help when needed. Therapy does not always have to be associated with a severe mental illness, sometimes it just a matter or checking in, and gaining self awareness.
Lesson 3 : Pilates is your thing.
The minuted i was introduced to exercise, i knew i hated it. I hate running, gym equipment, and sweating. So when i decided to try pilates reformer, i was skeptical but hopefull that i would finally enjoy something work out related, and i am so glad i tried it. Pilates has completly changed the way i view my body, and how i view excersie. It really is a matter of finding something you enjoy and sticking with it. So i guess the lesson here is dont stop trying, you will eventually find your work out niche.
Lesson 4: Contentment must be maintained.
I used to think contentment was a destination. That if i worked hard enough i would somehow get there. I was wrong. Contentment must be maintained and practiced daily. Everyday we are bombarded with messages from social media, commercials, and billboards, inviting us to resent our current lives and look at the "green grass" on the other side of the fence. Dont fall for it. Everyday presents something to be grateful for, taking the time to truely understanding contentment has made a huge difference in my daily outlook. i dare you to try it.
Lesson 5: God hears you.
This needs no explanation. When we draw near to him, he is there. God has never turned his back on me.
Lesson 6: Live in the moment.
Along with learning to maintain contentment, i have learned to live in the moment. As a type A planner, living in the moment is difficult. My mind is always thinking of what next, and how i can acheive the next goal. It is exhauting to say the least. Living in the moment and contentment go hand in hand. In fact, rarely can you be content while thinking about, or worrying about the future, it just does not work. Matthew 6: 34 says ..Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself". Ive learned to deal with todays triumphs and fails today, by practicing this i save myself from anxiety that can rob me of the contentment and freedom offered to me today.
Lesson 7: It's ok to do nothing.
Once again, i am a planner and i usually hate wasted time. I often tell my friends that i do not do well with down time. However this past year i have learned to do the opposite, enjoy down time and do nothing. And my do nothing i mean no cleaning, no to-do list, no shopping...nothing. This does not mean i am not intentional with my time. My intention is to relax, to make sure that my body and mind gets rest, and relaxation. Even if that means binge watching a show i love. How many times have you had a day off and filled it with so much that it feels more stressful that a work day? Its ok to do thing on your list but actually enjoying your day. Trust me you will be glad you did nothing.
Lesson 8 : Cherish the ones you love.
A few days ago i lost a dear friend who played an instrumental part in my teen years and college years. Loosing that friend reminded me of my priorities, put the people i love first. Its so easy to get caught up in everythng around us, that we forget to enjoy a friends company, or give someone a phone call rather than just text, and spend quality time with the people we care about. A long life is not promised to anyone, remember to cherish those you love while you still can.
Lesson 9 : Adventure is everywhere.
Instagram has made us believe that adventure is only available in exotic locations on an island some place, or an ancient city. This could not be any further from the truth. Adventure is all around us, and if we really wanted to we can live out best lives no matter the circumstance. Growing up my family took vacations every summer. No we were not rich, we lived in a one income home. But one thing my parents knew was the value to taking their children outside of the city. We created memories that will last us a lifetime. Not to mention we often carry the same traditions created in our childhood into our own families. Whether its a visit to a new part of town, a road trip, or a visit to a new city, state or country, the adventure is there for your taking. So stop making excuses and get outside.
Lesson 10 : Potential is ageless.
Recently i read an article that talked about not fearing your 30s. Clearly this article was geared towards fearful 20 somethings. I am hear to say there is absolutly nothing to be afraid of, really there isnt. For me turning 31, there is still so much life for me to live, and still so much to hope for. Potential does not end at a certain age, and age limits are for the closeminded. I see potential all around me, and i look forward to starting a new chapter in life. We never know who or what is around the corner, the anticipation is exciting and i look forward to soaking up every moment of 31.