30 isn't so bad..
FEATHER CANYON EARRINGS BY BOTH SIDES BRIDAL | PHOTOS BY SOPHIE XU
I have been going back and forth on what to write about turning 30. Should it be an anti-aging blog post? Should it be a recap of my nonstop birthday weekend? Personally, I just don't like that I'm not able to say 29 anymore, but in reality 30 feels just like 29. I have never been a person freaked out by age, maybe it's because of my line of work, or the fact that I am not so eager about having kids, or that I generally look 22 without makeup on..
So because I love lists, I decided I'd write 30 things that I learned by the time I turned 30. Weirdly, turning 30 does not have the feeling of freedom, or "let's party" like 21. It's more of a reflection/milestone where you naturally analyze everything you've done thus far + plan for the future. So, here are the 30 things that I have learned over three decades. Some are ridiculous, and some are super valuable lessons that have come with serious heartbreak.
1. You only have 1 body, treat it well. It drives me absolutely crazy to see someone who is perfectly healthy and able to live functionally without the aid of chronic medicine, treat their body like garbage. Do you know what I (or the 100000000 ppl) struggling with an illness would do on a daily basis just to be normal? C'mon. You're legit taking advantage of yourself!
2. Don't date a member of your favorite band. End of story.
3. Don't judge other people's success, it's all relative. I use to be so guilty of this. I was so concerned with a corporate hierarchy that I literally missed out on my life. Success means something different to everyone. Some people will put it ALL into their jobs, and STILL be miserable. Are they "successful"? No way!! I pity those people now, and laugh thinking about my previous career path, and how I never in a million years would want to be "successful" on paper again.
4. Don't let anyone change your dreams. When I was 16/17 I met with my guidance counselor about college. I was so excited to be applying to the Fashion Institute of Technology, Parsons + Drexel. When I told her my plans for the future, she said to me, "People from here don't make it in that sort of role. What about going to Keystone or Marywood (local colleges) and being an Art Teacher?" I will never forget this!! If I were a weak or scared little girl, my entire hopes, and dreams would have ended that day. Don't let anyone stop you if it's what you truly want!
5. Listen to red flags. Did you ever end up in a situation that could've been avoided if you listened to your gut? Yeah, listen.
6. Don't let high school people get to you, it'll make you stronger. People always ask me how I don't care what people say or think, and I truly have my high school to thank for this one. Picture this, small, gossip-filled town, similar to Varsity Blues without the cowboy vibe, where everyone has something to say about everyone. The most judgmental place, ever. I was talked about so much, why? Because my clothes were different, I was constantly in the art room hanging with art kids, I listened to "weird" jam band music, I smoked weed, I said what I was thinking, and had friends outside of the "cool" kids. I didn't give AF. It didn't change how mean people were, and how bad it hurt to hear all the true + not so true things about myself but it absolutely did prep me for being in the public eye, and having my own brand.
7. Be nice to everyone. You never know what someone else is going through. You never know when you will be in a situation where someone remembers how you treated them, so be nice. The world is so incredibly small.
8. Own your life. You know those people who wait until XYZ to do _______. Well don't. The harsh reality is that in the end, all you have is yourself. Do what is best for you within reason. If you died tomorrow, would you feel like you really LIVED?
9. Don't get tattoos under the age of 25. You were right, Dad.
10. There's no shortcut to success, or a "free lunch". 99% of people who have perfect bodies, have amazing careers, and successful businesses all have 1 thing in common.. THEY WORK HARD!!!! Unless you are that 1% that fell into a goldmine, or were born into royalty (ie. Brooklyn Beckham), there is no shortcut. As Rhianna said, "Work, work, work, work, work".
11. Don't do heroin. Period.
12. Travel more, THIS is what makes you richer. The best experiences of my life were when I was not in my day-to-day life. I know people who would rather save their money than enrich their life with culture, and experiences. It BLOWS my mind.
13. Take care of your skin. Did you ever see someone and hear their age and cringe? Wear sunscreen, and take care of your skin. You don't wanna be hagsville at 30.
14. You'll never be perfect. Mentally or physically.
15.Takers will ALWAYS keep taking. Do not keep giving.
16. Less is more. Get rid of the toxic. You know those girls who have 25+ besties. Hello sorority sisters I'm talking about you! Ugh they are the worst. Studies show that the smaller number of people you associate with, the better. Article here. I have a lot of people I talk to, but I have very few best friends, and I do not use that term lightly. If you hang out with someone, and get home and do not feel better about your day, get rid of them. Easier said than done, I know.
17. Be present + remind yourself to be. We are so worried about the future, and sick over the past, that we are never really in the NOW. I have been setting this as my intention every day in yoga. It is a major struggle for me.
18. Don't try to change someone. People don't change. You know that person you see so much potential in? And you think wellll... maybe if... Yeah that doesn't work. Someone who's selfish, will always be selfish. An asshole will always be an asshole. Having integrity or being loyal is a character trait, it can't be learned or changed. I HOPE so badly that I am wrong when I say that.. but I doubt it.
19. Seek help when you lose control. Mentally with your thoughts or addiction. Or physically when you behave crazily. It's ok to be struggling, it's ok to feel like your world is crashing. It's ok to have terrible anxiety that cripples you from your daily life, or makes you unable to get out of bed. All you have to do is learn how to deal with it. Self-love is the most important type of love. Going to therapy is not being weak, it's quite the opposite actually.
20. Love is not always enough. Period.
21. Some people should not have credit cards. I am one of those people.
22. Speak your mind no matter how different or weird it may seem. Be real, be you. At least you'll never be called a fraud. Maybe an asshole, but that's ok. Be true to yourself, and stick up for what you believe in.
23. Force yourself to make changes. The best and worst thing I ever did was move to LA. I never felt so alone in my life. I had no friends, no one to look out for me, no one to ask what I was up to. It was so brutal. But I was forced to try to make new friends, pass the time with new hobbies, and deal with myself.
24. Remember who was there, and who wasn't. Don't ever forget it. There are two times in my life that I can identify as the hardest, and unfortunately beyond that, I learned who my real friends were, and who was just along for the ride.
25. Conformity is basic.
26. Your parents know more than you give them credit for. This is a hard one for me to write because I know my parents will read this within 5 minutes of me announcing it. Anyways... They have lived way longer than you. They have been through it. Chances are, even if they're squares or nothing like you, they have your best interest in mind. Give them a little bit more credit.
27. Stay hydrated! Drink more water. I HATE water, so I have to force myself. Seriously.
28. Make Top 5 lists. It keeps you dreaming. Everyone makes fun of me for this, but it's a good way to stay inspired. Think fast! Top 5 places you're dying to go to.. Top 5 celebs you NEED in your life.. Top 5 favorite songs... Top 5 people in your life... Makes you think, also a great way to gauge someone!
29. When in doubt, wear black. If you can't figure out what to wear, or need to look important. Just wear all black. Seriously, you can never go wrong! A black tee, and black pants, or a little black dress go a LONG way. Invest in them, ASAP.
30. Friendships DO end + that's okay. Like all relationships, some friendships expire. It sucks so bad, and I have such a hard time accepting it, but some people are meant to be your friend for a period of time in your life, and not the next. Sometimes when the shared interest is no longer there, it's hard to communicate, or have fun. Instead of dragging it out, resenting the person, and feeling obligated, let go. Don't be a frienemy.
What are you biggest life lessons? Think about it + share.