Today is my 30th birthday, and I couldn’t be happier. Many women dread turning the big 3-0, but with all that is going on in the world, I am grateful to be alive, happy, and living comfortably. Every year around this time, I shut off the world and turn inward to reflect on the lessons I’ve learned for the past year. This time around, I had a lot to consider.
The past decade has been very interesting for me. I have lived in 10 different homes (in 4 different states), given birth to three children, built four businesses, wrote 7 books, served in three different church ministries, quit college twice, graduated University once, and lived overseas in another country – all while wrestling with mental health and depression. 2020 has brought on many mixed emotions but has also helped me to gain a level of clarity and understanding I have been seeking for along time.
Of all the lessons I’ve learned in the last 30 years, the lesson that is most relevant now than ever is that time does not slow down for anyone or anything. To some, 30 years old may seem young, but I feel like I’ve lived a lifetime of experience. No matter what I may have experienced in the moment (good or bad) time kept on ticking. Time flies, so I have learned to enjoy the good moments and to quickly get over the bad ones.
After 30 years, my best piece of advice is:
Don’t Be Ashamed of Your Journey. You have a greater chance of success when you run your own race. Decide to run someone else’s race, and you will always end up in second place.– Victoria
We all have a story, and no story is the same. God has a unique plan and purpose for your life that is tailor-made just for you. If you compare your story to others, you may miss out on an important chapter in your own life. Once you find yourself on your own path, stay there, and don’t divert from it. You have a greater chance of success when you run your own race. Decide to run someone else’s race, and you will always end up in second place.
The more life you live, the more lessons you will learn. Every now and then, it’s good to take the time and reflect on where you are in life, where you want to go, and how far you have come. You may know more than you think you do, gain clarity, or realize changes you need to make. Self-reflection can help you to discover who you are, your values, your goals, and who God created you to be.
If you’re interested in my Top 30 lessons I’ve learned in the past decade, keep reading.
30 Lessons I’ve Learned in 30 Years
- Don’t settle for less just because it’s available. You are worthy and you deserve the best.
- Never dull your shine to make someone else feel comfortable.
- Be your own biggest cheerleader. If you can’t get excited for yourself, who will?
- Go where you are celebrated for who you really are, not who you pretend to be.
- Don’t just survive, learn to thrive.
- Putting others’ needs before your own doesn’t make you a hero. Make yourself a priority.
- What people think of you is none of your business. Don’t allow the opinions of others to run your life.
- You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do. It’s OK to say NO.
- It’s OK to be the first one to do it. Don’t wait around for others to validate you.
- The pressure to please others will eventually crush you. Evaluate the expectations that others put on you, and don’t feel pressured to conform to anyone’s idea of who you should be.
- Your thoughts control your life, so fill your mind with good things.
- Become confident in your own skin.
- Friendships with other women are necessary.
- Take responsibility for your actions.
- Surround yourself with people you want to be like. Find inspiration in those who have made it to where you aspire to be.
- No one is going to save you. You are going to have to put in the hard work to live the life you want to live.
- Feelings aren’t facts. Don’t allow your emotions to control your life.
- Reading books has the power to transform your world and change your life.
- Actions speak louder than words. Be a woman who keeps her word.
- There is strength in starting over.
- Consistency is important in every area of your life.
- It’s OK to change your mind.
- Show them don’t tell them. You may be smart, talented, or experienced…but if you don’t know how to prove yourself, none of those things matter.
- Don’t allow other people’s opinions of you to shape who you become – good or bad.
- Take care of your body from the inside out.
- Common sense isn’t common.
- Speak up for yourself.
- Rest your mind, body, and spirit OFTEN.
- Go after your dreams.
- God is faithful and He won’t let you down.
Share one life lesson you’ve learned in the comments below!