First and foremost, where is March going? I feel like I blinked and we’re already knocking on April’s door.
I believe my 31st birthday was the most uninteresting birthday ever. This year it fell on a Sunday, but I made no attempt to celebrate. My dad is the only other person I know who has such a casual attitude toward birthdays. Such a dull quality to develop. Actually, I have never been so enthusiastic about commemorating achievements in general. I often find ways to make significant events less meaningful, but I want to try to change that moving forward. Life is too short to pass up the opportunity to observe special occasions.
When I turned thirty, someone asked if I felt any additional pressure. Now that I’m thirty-one, this is an excellent time to ponder that question. My response at the time was that I had accepted my new reality and planned to live in the present. I didn’t spend as much time in the present as I had promised. Last year, I suffered from severe anxiety as a result of my constant concern about the future. You see, not many things were going according to plan. I was both anxious and depressed at the same time because the idea of the future and not wasting time like I did in my 20s kept coming back to me. Last year was mentally draining and if only I lived in the moment like I said I would, I would have had an okay year but we learn from our actions.
Your mind will be blown by the year I am having. I have generally been quite calm, and I am proud of my mental development, whereas the old me would have been in a complete panic. I think I found the answer in Isaiah 60:22, “When the time is right, I the Lord will make it happen.” I don’t want to overthink things because that usually makes me anxious. I make an effort to think of that verse as I focus on things I can control.
Some things I observed about myself in the past year…
SELF-AWARENESS: Nobody ever warned me about how self-aware you would be when you turned 30. My life last year literally revolved around this theme. When making decisions in every area of your life, you simply reach a point where you are brutally honest with yourself. Last year, I reached a level of self-awareness that was mind-blowing.
ACHES: If you have been skipping your vitamins and proper fitness routine like I had been doing, it will catch up to you. Everyone jokes about the aches you begin to experience in your 30s and I believed they were exaggerating but it is not a myth after all. You begin to get some pain in certain parts of your body and you are just reminded that you are getting older. If there was ever a time to prioritise your health, I would say it is in your 20s but the second best time is in your 30s. Fitness and I have always had a love-hate relationship. It has been a case of consistency, and whenever my life is in disarray and I need a restart, I dash to the gym as if it holds the restart button, and it usually aids in fortifying both my body and mind.
EMPATHY: I’m not sure if having more empathy comes with getting older, but I’ve noticed it lately. Well, I suppose emotional intelligence develops with age, and I now give people a lot of thought before drawing conclusions. I have always been empathic, but I believe it has grown stronger with age.
SELF-DEFENCE: Self-defence is not necessarily physical; rather, it is now a mental issue. I used to let things slide simply because I couldn’t care less about them, but I later realized that this was because I disliked conflict. Again, I discovered at the age of 30 that I occasionally don’t mind having those challenging conversations. This is a work in progress but progress nonetheless.
FUN: Last year was fun for me. Ironically, despite having such a miserable year, I managed to fit in some fun and exploration. I prioritized having fun when I could because I was so concerned with making up for the lost time in my 20s.
GRADS: I finally received my doctorate. That was probably the highlight of my year, if not the decade. It wasn’t easy, but I did it, and it’s proof of all the great things I can accomplish if I put my mind to it.
What do I hope to accomplish in chapter 31?
STYLE: This year, I really want to develop my sense of style. I’m currently testing it out, and I hope I figure it out some day soon. I just want to have that 30s-plus style going for me and look more put together.
COOK MORE: I work harder when I am preparing food for other people, but I’ve come to the realization that I treat myself unfairly when it comes to food. I usually eat whatever is nearby, but right now I want to give myself a little more grace.
HOBBIES: I notice many people who have a lot of interesting things going on in their lives. They actually enjoy hobbies like pottery, dance lessons, and other fun activities outside of their regular schedules, and I want to discover new hobbies too. I am thinking of something art related. We’ll find out.
SEEK GOD: I can do a lot more to improve my spiritual life. I have to get this part of my life right this time. Because I can’t afford to become estranged from my source, it is simply simpler to have a sincere relationship with God.
CLARITY: I think gaining clarity on things is important going forward. I don’t want to waste time making up scenario’s in my head when there’s an option to clarify the matter.
In addition to other things, I have personal and professional development on my to-do list, I also have some other thoughts, but I believe I should keep those to myself. I owe myself a balloon birthday shoot and, God willing, an actual celebration for my 32nd birthday. Thank you for reading, and I’ll talk to you later. Don’t be rude, wish me a happy birthday, after all, it is still my birthday month.
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