7 Personal Lessons That I Am Taking With Me Into My 30s

This weekend was my 30th birthday. I never had any real anxiety about turning 30 but definitely spent a lot of time reflecting on my life and my 20s. I have been through so much and have grown exponentially almost every year for the past 10 years, so much so that I really can't recognize that person that I was 5 years ago, let alone 10 years ago when I had just turned 20 (I don't know if everyone feels that way or if it is just me). 

Turning 30 has come to mean to many things for me. I have gone through major spiritual and emotional growths that I would love to share with everyone, and hopefully will get to in the future. But for now, I would like to share 7 major personal changes, or things that I feel I have overcome, that stood out to me as I have thought about my life and my growth as a person over the past 10 years. 

I can honestly say that I am so happy to be 30. I have never felt better, more confident and more in tune with myself and my life. An entire phase of my life is behind me and I look forward to growing so much more over the next 10 years. 

I compared myself to others a lot when I was in my teens and early 20s and it would really bring down my self esteem at times. I hated the way I looked and wanted to morph into every person, model, actress I saw that I thought was beautiful. I spent so much time picking on myself. And it's always something- if it's not your body, it's your face. If it's not your weight, it's your height. It's exhausting and impossible to achieve your idea of perfection,  or to look like anyone else for that matter. The same has applied to comparing myself to others' successes or what other people have or where they are at in their life.  As I have gotten older, I have became increasingly more and more comfortable in my skin and now see my own beauty and strengths and successes in a whole new light. Age has granted confidence and security in being who I am and thus am able to admire other people's beauty and successes without jealousy and without questioning myself.

When I was young, from a physical standpoint, all I could see were the things that I wanted to change about myself. I failed miserably to see my own beauty, At some point, I stopped focusing on the things I didn't like about myself. I learned appreciate my physical flaws in such a way that allowed me to actually find them to be beautiful and part of who I am. Now at 30, I don't see flaws at all. I just see me. Same went for my personal strengths and weaknesses. I not only am now comfortably able address the things about myself that I would have liked to improve on and work on them, but I have also embraced so many of my strengths in such a way that have allowed me to thrive in my life and make a difference in others' lives. And since I have learned to stop focusing on my own flaws, I now never focus on other people's flaws either. I always see the strengths and inner and outer beauty that other people posses, which allows me to be free of judgement and negativity towards others. 

I feel I have really found myself and embraced who I am as a person. I have no desire to people please or pretend I am something I am not. I don't feel that I need to prove anything to anybody. It's really freeing! If you don't like me, fine. If you don't like how I navigate my life, tough. If you don't think I look good or dress well, totally cool. It doesn't change anything. I still like me, I still like you. We can probably still have an interesting conversation or even still be friends even though you don't agree with me or think I am pretty or successful or whatever it might be. As long as I feel confident in my choices and in myself, outside opinions do not matter. This only comes with confidence. Having a strong sense of self is one of the greatest things that has come with getting older.

I have found that loves comes so much easier when you possess a profound confidence in who you are, inside and out. And I don't mean a romantic love but rather love as an overall feeling, lightness and positivity you possess. You're a more positive person when you are confident and self-assured.. You see things and people differently. Your relationships, from co-workers to friends to acquaintances to your romantic partner, change. The way you interact with and view people overall changes. When you are deeply and truly confident in yourself, you see people in a positive light. You don't judge, shame or pick someone's appearance apart. You're less defensive and your feelings don't get hurt easily because you have nothing to prove, not to yourself nor to anybody else.

Priorities and what is important to me has changed dramatically. My spirituality, creativity, intelligence, health and compassion is far, far more important to me than my appearance. I spend a lot less time surfing the internet for beauty tricks, fitness tips or what I can spend my money on, and a lot more time keeping up to date on issues that are important to me that will allow me to be a better advocate or educating myself on new topics and what is happening on a global scale. Being an advocate and doing something to better the lives of others is my number one priority, something I would have never put first when I was younger. I have lost friends and cut ties with people that don't bring anything positive to my life. Having tons of friends isn't as important as having a few that bring abundance to my life. The things I let bother me have changed. When I was younger, what people would say or think about me really got under my skin. As I have gotten older, I no longer am concerned with other people's opinions as long as I feel good about myself and the decisions I am making. The things that upset me now are injustices and people who don't to the right thing and thus bring negativity into the world or harm to others. The more what is really important to you progresses, the more your priorities, relationships, passions and the things you let bother you change. 

Let go of the past. Be okay with your mistakes. Learn something and move on. The simplest way grow as a person and be successful in many facets of your life and one of the hardest things to tackle. I have come a long way in this regard and thus mistakes and failures and hurts roll right off my back, and all I am left with are the lessons learned. 

Self awareness has not come easy and has taken a lot of meditation, reflection and total honesty with myself. I spent my 20's trying to figure myself out and accept myself, my personality, my nature for what it is. Trying to believe yourself into being or behaving in such a way that you are not is like swimming upstream. I have learned that best thing I can do for myself is be honest, try to work on what I feel can be improved and use my strengths to the best of my ability. At this point, I can lay myself, my likes and dislikes, my personality, my strengths and my weaknesses out very clearly. This makes it easier to navigate through life and also easier to be honest with other people.

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