29 Top Growing Pains Before 29
With my 29th birthday approaching, I decided to reflect on these past almost 3 decades of my life. I am truly grateful to make it to another year, especially because so many people have not made it into this holiday season let alone age 29.
(Let’s have a moment of silence for those no longer with us………
I am nearing 30 and at this point, it’s expected of me to have it all figured out, right? Welp, I don’t have it all figured out and I won’t pretend to. Over the past years specifically this past decade, I have had many lessons. So, I decided to compile a list of 29 lessons and growing pains. This post is inspired by my dear friend/coach; Coach Nadia K., who posted something similar for her 30th birthday. I hope that it serves as inspiration and clarity for those of you wishing to navigate this thing called adulting. The universe knows I am still trying to navigate it myself. (“Iceberg straight ahead!”)Here are my 29 Top Growing Pains and lessons before 29.
1. Be Present:
We live day to day pushing through our hectic agendas and what appears to be chaos. One meeting, errand, and obligation after another. When we are not rushing from event to event we are immersed in our tablets or cell-phones; never really embracing the day or being present in our environment, with our families and loved ones, and in our day to day lives. Being present allows us to forget about the troubles of the past, allows us to quit worrying about what’s next on our “to do list”, and for just one moment just be. Don’t live in the past or future-just-be-present.
2. Live Mindfully:
Living mindfully does not mean you have to practice mindfulness or meditation (however, I highly suggest it). Being mindful means to be present within yourself and your environment. To Thoroughly understand all of your thoughts, feelings, and emotions and to just notice it all without reaction. Practicing mindfulness over the past few years has truly transformed my life and mental health.
3. Live with Intent & Purpose:
Be intentional with everything you do and every encounter, connection, and the relationships you have. Everything you do should be done with purpose.
4. Eat Clean:
At the young age of 29, I still look like I am 16 years old! #babyfaceproblems I get carded for pretty much every purchase I make and I furthermore get offered the kids menu at some restaurants. I don’t attribute it to just good genes (thanks, mom ;)) I am positive that my change in eating habits 4-5 years ago, has assisted in keeping me looking healthy, feeling healthy, and looking young. As the old saying goes, “age like fine wine.” You can’t age wine well without proper care and nourishment! So, be sure to take care of your body by putting the right things in it and it will take care of you. At this point in life, we are old enough to grasp the knowledge of proper nutrition, so don’t let ignorance be an excuse.
5. Be Physically Active:
Pick up a hobby that requires you to be physically active. I like to run and practice yoga so if nothing else, I try to incorporate that into my lifestyle. However, chasing around your kids, nieces, and nephews counts. Whatever you do, just get up and move.
6. Spread Kindness:
In order for us to spread kindness, we must first be kind to ourselves. We are always our worst critics. We tend to beat ourselves up and say some of the meanest things to OURSELVES! We allow negativity into our minds instead of being gentle and kind to ourselves. Genuine kindness starts within ourselves. Over the past few years, I have ensured to check in with myself whenever I am not being kind. I have a small select few friends who will also check me when needed. Treat YOU how YOU deserve to be treated!
7. Spend Time with Yourself:
If you are over the age of 22 and you have never gone out to eat-alone what are you waiting for? And no, I don’t just mean eating alone in the work lunch room, I mean going to a bar for a drink-alone, eating at a restaurant or café-alone, or even traveling-alone. (no social media involved) If you can’t enjoy your own company, how do you expect others to do so? Spending time with yourself is the best gift you can give yourself. If you don’t have time to actually take yourself out try setting aside an additional 10-20 minutes for yourself before you shower; meditate, read a book, or just breathe! You will appreciate yourself so much more.
8. Saying No is OK!
There was a time in my life where saying “no” to people was very difficult. I would feel guilty for saying no. I often took on more on my plate than I could chew. Most of the time I would agree to do things for others who quite frankly wouldn’t necessarily look out for me. While I don’t believe in doing things for others just because they will do for you, if you find yourself looking out more for others and you don’t feel any reciprocation even in appreciation form, then there is a problem. You have to start saying NO! Sadly, when you give a hand, some people like to take the whole arm. Begin to truly limit the amounts of times you say yes, especially when your intuition tells you to say no from the beginning.
9. Decrease the Defense:
We all have defense mechanisms-some of us utilize them more than others. (Guilty). At this stage of life, you should be very mindful of your feelings and how your defense mechanisms are wired to react. Overreacting at our age isn’t cute. Be aware of your defenses and how you respond to others. This is something I continuously work on for myself.
10. The Law of Attraction:
“What you believe, you become.” What you speak into the universe has a tendency of becoming your reality. We often make decisions based on our own beliefs and biases that conspire with the universe and the manner in which things manifest for us. Be sure to keep positive energy around you and avoid anything toxic. You will be surprised how much in your life changes for the better once you begin to think more optimistically. Don’t take it from me, try it for yourself.
11. #FOE Family Over Everything:
As I got older, I come to value my family more and more. Sure, we don’t always get along nor do we always agree on everything, but at the end of the day they are my family. Appreciate the family you were given. Tomorrow is never promised so despite any disagreements you may have, be sure to show and tell your family members how much you truly care, love, and appreciate them. Friends may come and go, some friends turn into family, but at the end of the day; family is over everything.
12. Trust Yourself:
If I had to choose one of the most daunting tasks in adulting-aside from domestic house chores (half-kidding here), it would be making decisions. For some, decision making comes easy, for ME, not so easy. For years, I have 2nd guessed every decision I have made. This all boils down to the ability to trust myself and my decisions. Effective decision making comes from being able to weight out pro’s and con’s while at the same time not perseverating about the con’s. Make a decision AND STICK TO IT! When all else fails, flip a coin-for humor. Take time to sit with yourself, reflect on the decision, and trust yourself.
13. Quit Worrying About What Others Think:
When you truly relinquish others thoughts, beliefs, expectations, and perceived expectations of you, only then do you truly begin to live! We hold ourselves back so much based on what we think others will think. Shame and doubt play a key role in the hindrance of focusing on how WE think of ourselves. Don’t worry about what others think- it will be a huge weight off your shoulders.
14. Be Vulnerable:
Vulnerability has such a negative stigma, being vulnerable does not mean you are weak. I believe, those who courageous enough to be vulnerable are the strongest individuals. You can only show your true self in life and love through vulnerability. This is something that I have come to learn over the past years. Once you show up and show your true self; no defenses, no facade, and no shame in what others may think of your true raw self; you will invite wholeheartedness into your world. It’s ok to be vulnerable.
To learn more about vulnerability check out.
15. Reading is Fundamental:
One of my goals this year was to pick up more books-and actually complete them. (Pssst, libraries still exist). The knowledge that is gained through reading is one that can’t be gained elsewhere, especially when reading for self-development. So be sure to pick up a book, e-book, or audio-book.
16. Be a Self-Learner:
When I first decided, I was going to start my business, I was completely clueless (still feel that way at times ;)) The wonderful, worldwide web gives us the opportunity to literally search anything on any search engine and LEARN! (from reliable sources, of course). There are so many courses, content, and information out there to help you strive in many areas. While I am no longer in school, I have continued to self-teach and embrace being a life-learner and student of life.
I don’t know how many times I heard the term “network” while in undergrad. Networking truly is the key to success. You have to be willing to put yourself out there. As the saying goes, “Closed mouths don’t get fed.” If you are my age and find yourself in a room where you are the smartest and most vocal, it’s time to step outside your comfort zone and start to associate with people who will push you to be better and add value to your life.
We all tend to have bucket lists of some sort. It’s time to do all the things we want to do but are too afraid to do and as my Biz Babe Aandra Bohlen states so often, #doitscared. We literally get one life to live so why hinder ourselves with fear. Just go out there and do whatever it is your pretty little heart desires, fear and all.
19. Traveling isn’t as Hard as it Seems:
One of my goals post grad school was to travel. I don’t know why in my mid-twenties I had yet to explore some more. We give ourselves excuses, tell ourselves we can’t afford it, and tell ourselves we don’t have the time. Traveling is not as hard as people make it seem. Pick a destination, find the best deals online, and book it! #doitscared
20. Practice Gratitude:
Gratitude is something I find myself practicing daily. As the season of thanksgiving approaches, we are often only limited to this time of year to truly be thankful for even the basic things in our lives that we take for granted. Try this: for the next year, write one thing you were thankful for daily and place it in a mason jar. At the end of the year, look through the mason jar, and reflect on all the things you are thankful for.
If you are my age, still claiming to still be the same person, and pride yourself on having “never changed”, it IS time for some change! Change is the only thing in life that remains constant.
22. Create the Life You Want:
When I was 18 I was offered a full-time job at a local social service agency I was co-oping at while in high school. I declined the opportunity and decided I wanted to go to college instead. As a high school senior, I witnessed many of the workers at that agency miserable every day; wishing they could be doing something different. It was in this moment that I learned that you must truly create the life you desire. In that moment, I vowed not to ever wake up in a position where I hate my life, career, or those around me. You truly have the power to create the life you want and it is never too late to begin that journey.
23. Don’t Hold Grudges or Resentment:
For years, I held resentment for many things and people in my life. Having grudges and holding on to resentment is pure toxin for the body. Holding on to that grudge or resentment will literally deplete energy, cause estranged relationships, and increase stress levels. If there is someone you wish to make amends with, please do so now. Holding on to resentment and grudges will only affect YOU.
Self-love goes along with taking care of yourself; mind, body, and spirit. Over the past 2 years, I have been able to love myself more, in return, I have attracted individuals into my life that contribute to my self-love.
25. Materialistic Things Mean Nothing:
Growing up, my mother would take my sister and I thrift shopping or yard sale shopping. I never truly appreciated that until now. I truly find peace in a thrift store or yard sale. Materialistic things really mean nothing to me. The ability to not be able to attach myself to things it truly a liberating one. As an adult, I truly cherish experiences and people over things. I honestly am more excited when I purchase a great item at a thrift store than whenever I purchase a discount or get a great deal at a high-end department store. At the end of the day, when we leave this universe, who we impacted matters more than WHAT we have accumulated over our lifetime.
26. It’s OK to Fall:
So many of us fear to fail. When we fall, or fail we rarely share those moments with people. Without struggle, there is no progress. When you fall, it is ok, as long as you’re able to get back up.
Taking responsibility for your own actions comes along with adulting. You have to be able to accept your wrongs, apologize for them, and ensure the same mistakes don’t happen multiple times. When you say sorry, you show empathy and compassion.
28. Be Realistic:
Things will not always go your way. You have to be realistic in everything you do and all the decisions you make. Don’t minimize anything you are going through.
29. You Will Never Have It All Figured Out! (Self-explanatory here).
There you have it, the 29 growing pains before 29. I would love to hear from you so if you have any growing pains to add or any input on navigating life comment, share, and email me at Findyourwill@gmail.com
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Happy Holidays and Happy 29th Birthday to Me!