Guest Post | Lessons for my 20 Year Old Self: Be Careful With Your Money

If you’ve caught any of my recent Instagrams, you might have guessed that I am on vacation this week! While I’m enjoying some down time in the beautiful Okanagan, my friend Sara has stepped in with a guest post. I hope you enjoy Sara’s savvy advice. These are all things I wish I’d had tattoo’ed on my arm when I was a 20-something.  Since writing about how Carrie Bradshaw is the most unrealistic freelance writer, ever, I think most of these tips are still very relevant to those of us who are now 30-somethings (& beyond!) 

There has been a series on Skinny Dip about the things we all wish we could say to our twenty year old selves. We’ve talked about love and loss and today, let’s talk about money. If there’s one thing we can probably all agree on is that we wish we were smarter with our money when we were twenty.

College students are virtually preyed upon by credit card companies. They set up tables on campuses and harass students passing by to fill out applications. They talk up great deals and the importance of building credit. The problem is that very few students understand how to approach credit correctly. Even if they understand, intellectually, that a credit card isn’t “free money,” they often give in to the temptation to simply pay the minimum amounts due. After all, they can make bigger payments later when it’s more convenient, right?

We’ve all been there. We’ve all been tempted by the siren song of credit, especially when we are young and we want to be able to keep up with our more well off friends.

Unfortunately, for most of us, what this does is set us off on a path toward a terrible credit rating—one that will prove problematic when we grow up and want to buy homes, start businesses, etc. When you’re starting up your first business, you’re going to be trying to find investors and will likely need a business credit card.

I wish I had access to a list of the best cash back business credit cards in order for me to earn rewards while funding my purchases. I had to learn about managing money through my own mistakes back then. But now I’m older and wiser.

So here’s what I’d say to my 20 year old self about money

-Get one card. One. That’s it.

-Pay at least $10 more than the minimum amount due on your credit statement

-Pay your bill as soon as it shows up in your email box or in the mail.

-Remember the physical limitations of your dorm room—can you really fit all of the things you want to buy into it?

-You are not a lesser person if you don’t have the most current fashions, accessories, electronic gadgets, etc.

-Share—share music, share movies, share books. Share instead of buying your own. You’ll look like a genius when you help your friends save money too.

-Saving is not stupid. Putting even $5 a week into a savings account is better than nothing.

-Take a course in personal finance and learn about saving, investing, retirement plans and basic economics now. You’ll look like a genius when you already understand all of that stuff your friends probably won’t bother with until they get their first jobs.

-Get a job and pay off the interest on your student loans each month. Yes, it isn’t due until later but you’ll be thousands of dollars ahead of the game come graduation time.

About the Author: Sara is freelance writer who most often writes about personal finance. In her spare time, she enjoys maintaining a healthy lifestyle through swimming and practicing yoga.

What are some of the financial lessons you wish you had learned when you were 20?

Do More of What Makes You Awesome

In December I participated in the Stratejoy Holiday Council and loved it. One of the things I found extremely helpful about the workshop was it helped me break down my goals for the year into easy to manage pieces. I decided to set goals for two months at a time so that every 60 days I have a different theme and specific things that I’m working on. This has been my theme for March-April:

Why I chose this as a theme: I’ve realized that I’m the best version of myself when I make time to do the things I love: being creative, writing, dancing, pushing my body & getting in regular sweaty workouts, listening to my favourite music, engaging with the world and learning new things. I’ve learned that when I don’t make time for these things, I feel depressed and bogged down.

Have you ever had the feeling like you no longer recognize your own life? Where you think of the person you used to be when you were younger and think “Where did I go?”. Where you spend whole days feeling guilty and discouraged because it feels like you’re not living up to your potential? I’ve had many of these moments. Actually, I spent a huge chunk of my twenties feeling this way. These moments are sad and they’re hard, but they’re also sobering. I believe that if you can recognize something is wrong, you can change it.

When I was a child I had so many diverse interests and things I was totally nerdy about. I swam, ran track competitively, took pottery classes, competed in public speaking competitions, collected stamps, read voraciously, sketched, painted, sang in a choir, played the cello and spoke fluent French. I also danced ballet. I didn’t think so at the time but I was a classic overachiever. Although a lot of my other interests fell to the wayside (when was the last time I made pottery?!), ballet was the one that stuck. By the time I was in my pre-teens I was in the dance studio 4-5 times a week after school.

Although I loved ballet and had the right body type, I didn’t have the stomach for it: the long hours, the constant, never ending criticism, the impossible quest for perfection. Ballet is part art-form, part psychological warfare. It’s a lot to handle when you’re not a fully formed adult emotionally. At some point in my late teens, ballet  just stopped being fun. I wanted to feel like a normal teenager – go out on dates, join the drama club, have a life outside of dance – so, I cut back.

When I moved to Toronto as an 18 (soon to be 19) year old, I swapped the dance studios of my childhood for underground clubs, my pointe shoes for platforms, and piano solos for the bumping bass of house music. Compared to an hour and a half ballet class in pointe shoes, dancing all night in 5 inch heels seemed like a breeze. The upside is that I developed an abnormally high tolerance for foot pain. The downside is that I eventually reached a point in my mid 20’s, where I was working in an office job I hated, swilling vodka on the weekends and wondering “What have I become. Where did all my interests go?!”

Although I took dance classes sporadically while I lived in Toronto, I never made it a priority. Even though I missed ballet, I think I was afraid of feeling of how I used to feel when I took ballet classes as a teenager: picked on, criticized, imperfect, never good enough. Instead of facing my fears, I made excuses as to why I wasn’t taking ballet classes: work, stress, school, relationships, money etc. When I was in my late 20’s I suffered a really bad back injury. My excuse then became “I’ll go back to ballet when my back is better.” However, since being diagnosed with Degenerative Disc Disease and arthritis, I’ve realized that my back is never going to be fully “better” and it seems silly to not do something that I enjoy.

To really be in love with my life, I need to dance. Just like I need to write. As I was telling my Mom the other day, I’d really like to take a ballet class where nothing is on the line, where the only person I’m trying to impress is myself. So, that’s what I have decided to do! I got so excited about the prospect of dancing again, that I the other night I dug out my old pointe shoes and took them for a whirl around the kitchen…

Since I haven’t taken a ballet class in a really long time, I decided to ease back into it by taking Barre Method. The classes are a blend of yoga, pilates and ballet exercises. I love it! As I was explaining to my friend Kate, “It’s like X-treme Ballet.” We do typical ballet moves but with weights, balls and lots of reps, all set to fun music. And oh boy, do you feel it. Like actual ballet, it’s hard work but the hard is what makes it good. In case you were wondering, it also gives you glutes and abs that could crush cans.

{Photo via Barreworks, Toronto}

It feels really good to move my body in this way again. Just like when I visit Quebec or France and immerse myself in French, doing ballet exercises again makes me feel like my body is remembering a language it learned many years ago. I’m starting with Barre Method so that I’ll be ready to take an actual dance class in the summer. Who knows, after that I may even brush up on my French!

Sometimes I wonder if maybe we get it right the first time. If what we are passionate as children is a reflection of our true calling in life. I was a kid who loved dancing, telling stories and learning about the world – which, essentially describes who I am now. I don’t think our essential selves really change that much from when were children, it’s just that life piles on so much bullshit that sometimes they get buried under other people’s expectations of who we should be. I imagine if we all peeled back the layers, we’d find our beautiful, shiny, awesome cores. That’s what I’m trying to do. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Do more of what makes you awesome: my new life mantra.

What makes you awesome? 

Stop Comparing Yourself & Other Lessons From My 20’s

One of my favourite movies is Garden State.

I saw it when it first came out in theatres. I was 24, going through the beginning phases of a quarter life crisis and like the characters in the film, I spent a lot of time feeling lost, disconnected, searching for answers & love. Garden State spoke to me on a deeper level. I fell in love with the movie and promptly purchased the DVD as soon as it was released. During that time in my life I’d watch the movie often – partly because I loved it, but also because I was super broke, couldn’t afford cable and it was one of the only DVDs I owned. There in tiny bachelor pad, on my tiny TV, I’d watch Andrew & Sam fall in love, and feel comforted.

I was researching the film recently for a writing assignment and found an interesting interview with Zach Braff (director and star of the film) where he said:

“I have this theory that your body goes through puberty in its teens, and the mind goes through puberty in your twenties.”

I came to a similar conclusion a few years ago. My mind (and my body to a certain extent) definitely went through a puberty of sorts in my mid-twenties. However if someone had read me that Zach Braff quote at the time, I’m sure I would have scoffed at it. This just goes to show that sometimes you need some distance from your experiences to really see them clearly.

I graduated university when I was 23 with a degree in Anthropology and English. I really loved my university experience and I wasn’t prepared for the shock to the system that happened when I graduated. Being in university allowed me to build this cushy bubble around myself. I went to class, I worked at my part time job, I studied really hard, I had fun dating and I partied with my friends on the weekends. When things went awry in my personal life I always had the consistency of school & studying to fall back on and keep me focused. When I graduated, this bubble burst and I suddenly had to deal with the “the real world”.

My room-mates and I went our separate ways and I rented a small bachelor apartment. I worked 40 hours a week, barely scraping by while looking for that illusive first “real job”. Aside from my bed, my furnishings consisted of a desk which no longer had legs, two lawn chairs and a couple of plastic storage bins. Also there was a weird scent like smelled like burning that wafted out of my kitchen cupboards for no particular reason. My life wasn’t exactly an episode of Cribs  (unless there’s an episode where a girl discovers she’s living below a meth lab then yes, my life was totally like Cribs.)

Like my living situation, my love life left something to be desired. After dating a wide assortment of unpredictable characters during university, I settled on the kite-boarder because he was older, stable, nice to me (most of the time), and seemed like a good choice on paper. Plus, dating him gave me an excuse not to hang out in my apartment. However, with 11 years between us we just weren’t right for each other  for many reasons. It wasn’t entirely his fault. Around this time I started my emotional hoarding. Although I was dating him, I was still obsessing over dudes I had dated before him who weren’t really worth my time to begin with. During this period I often felt lonely, frustrated and “stuck” (and I can’t help but wonder if he didn’t feel the same way when he was with me.)

While my mind was stuck in a mid-20’s angst death spiral, my body decided to go through a second puberty – literally. Shortly after my skin started to break out painful chin acne. At a time when I  desperately wanted to feel pulled together and adult, it felt like I was wearing a bandana made of pizza. It was a huge karate chop to my self-esteem. I spent many nights sitting on the tupperware bin I used as a desk chair, eating a large bowl of ramen noodles, fervently researching severe acne removal techniques.

(I never connected the ramen noodles to the acne, however I later found out that I’m extremely sensitive to gluten and dairy. One of the symptoms: terrible break-outs. Go figure.)

The worst part about this period of my life wasn’t that most of my furniture was made from items that you could find at an abandoned construction site or that my diet mostly involved two food groups (“macaroni” and “cheese”)  – it was that I became envious of the people around me who I thought had better jobs, nicer clothes, more exciting relationships, clearer skin and what I perceived to be better lives. I’d lie awake at night thinking, “When will it ever come together for me? When will it be my turn? When will my real life begin?”

I knew I had to take action but I didn’t know where to start. I think that’s part of the post-university 20-something conundrum – there are so many choices, options and challenges, that it can seem completely overwhelming and insurmountable. It’s enough to make you just go numb. That was my solution to the problem, until it wasn’t.

I’m not going to try and sugar coat this and tell you guys that there was this one “aha” moment that forced me out of my quarter life crisis. To be honest, it actually took several years of experiences, learning and work to really put my quarter life crisis behind me.

A few years later I went back to school to take some part-time classes. I remember the day one of my profs told the class:

“Don’t measure yourself against someone else’s yardstick” 

It’s stuck with me ever since.

When you’re in your 20’s you’re trying to establish your place in the world as an adult and it’s so easy to look to other people to gage your progress. I can’t count how many times I allowed myself to feel bad about myself because I didn’t have my “dream job” yet, or an advanced degree like so & so, or own a condo like ______, or make as much money as ____ who worked in _____ career. Did I actually want a career in ________ ? NO. So why was I  allowing myself to feel bad about it?! Everyone is on their own individual path. What’s right for one person isn’t necessarily  right for you. Keeping a running tally of who has what doesn’t do you any justice. Once I truly embraced this, I felt a lot better.

By not constantly comparing myself to other people, I had so much more energy to actually. do. stuff. 

A few things that have also  become really apparent as a 30-something:  Things change. What’s true in your mid 20’s might be totally different in your early 30’s.

My friends who struggled in their 20’s like did, are now thriving. They’re now designing, creating, writing & starting careers in fields they are really passionate about.  The couples with the enviable “perfect relationships” – a lot of them are still together, however an equal amount are getting divorced and finding greater happiness with new partners that they are way more compatible with. Many of my friends who had their “dream job” at 25, are now looking into new options: embracing parenthood, switching careers, opening yoga studios – you name it. I still have friends who make infinitely more money than I do, however when it comes to my career they are supportive & encouraging beyond belief. This makes me realize it was never a competition to begin with.

You’re probably wondering why I’m thinking about all this right now. The truth is I’m selling my couch that I have in storage in Toronto. Some history on the couch: when I finally got that first “real job” and received my first bonus cheque, I bid my lawn chairs goodbye and invested in some actual furniture. My 25th birthday present to myself was a pretty black leather couch from Ikea. I was so proud of that sofa so much because it made me feel like I was finally a real adult. I was no longer sitting on lawn chairs! I had real furniture! I had arrived! The other day my friend texted me to say that she’d found a guy who was willing to buy the couch for $70 and I winced slightly. It’s weird to put a price on something that once meant so much to you, however I know I need to let it go. For a long time I used things – bank account balances, furniture, fancy purses, jewelry – as a way to bench mark my success and compare myself to people around me. However, in the end there is something to be said about letting go of “keeping up with the Jones'” and just doing your own thing. I no longer need the physical “stuff” to remind me I’m an adult. I’m enough on my own. Maybe that’s what growing up is all about: realizing this & throwing away the yardstick.

xox

S.

10 Things I Wish Sex Ed Had Taught Me

One of the things I love about the Eden Fantasys website is that there is so much cool content on there. If you get bored looking at all the brightly colored sex toys, lingerie & the like, there’s forums, video reviews, the Eden Cafe Blog and SexIs Magazine – all of which feature fun & informative information about sex. Recently, I’ve become totally addicted to watching Producer & Sex Educator, Nikol Hasler’s  “What Did We Learn” video series. Nikol Hasler’s story is interesting. Sexually active at a young age, her early life was marked by moving from various foster homes, conquering subsequent drug abuse, becoming homeless and pregnant – all before the age of 18. These experiences have given Nikol a unique perspective on sex education. In 2008 she teamed up with a friend to create the Midwest Teen Sex Show – a very popular comedy podcast where she uses her experiences & biting sense of humor to provide straight forward info to teens about sex. She’s since written a book & moved to LA to write a pilot based on her podcast for Comedy Central. In other words, color me impressed. Did I mention she’s also really funny?

Producer & Sex Educator, Nikol Hasler

I was watching her video “Five Things I Wish Someone Else Would Tell My Son”  and it got me thinking about what I wish someone had told me about sex when I was a teenager.

The sex education I received in High School was spotty at best. In grade 10 our guidance counsellor Mrs. M (a bleach blonde, middle aged woman with a thick Eastern European accent & a fondness for spike heels, low cut tops & drinking out of a plaid thermos that I swear contained something stronger than coffee) turned on a VHS tape of the Degrassi High’s “School’s Out” TV movie and barked out “VATCH THIS!” before stumbling out of the room. If you haven’t seen this cheesy 1990’s masterpiece, it features a totally awkward scene where a girl shows her friend how to put a condom on a banana – because you know, that’s something that occurs all the time in normal social situations. I knew the basic “birds and bees” stuff but for the most part, sex ed left a lot to be desired. By the time I got to grade 11 my school had it’s own daycare. It’s funny how no one connected the dots here.

So, here’s some basic things I wish someone had told me in Sex Ed:

1. Always, ALWAYS pee after sex. When I was 19, I woke up one morning feeling like someone was stabbing my bladder with Ginsu knives. I thought I was dying. Turns out it was only a bladder infection – something I later learned could have been prevented if I had gone to the bathroom after doing the deed with my boyfriend the night before.

2. Sex Toys exist. Using them and pleasuring yourself isn’t weird or wrong. I feel like there is this massive double standard for men & women when it comes to self-pleasure. In popular culture, guys masturbating is considered “ha ha funny” (think the movie American Pie) whereas when it comes to women pleasuring themselves, it’s still looked upon as something slightly shameful. I didn’t even know vibrators existed for the longest time. When I finally worked up the nerve to go buy one in university it was like this big, secretive deal. Now that I own a whole drawer full of them I realize it’s not a big deal at all. Toys are actually really empowering. I wish more girls knew this.

With that said, if you’re going to use toys make sure they are body safe. Unfortunately, there are many toys out there made of materials that contain phthalates and other toxic chemicals that have been linked to cancer and serious health problems. Protect your girl parts and make sure the sex toy you are buying is labeled as “body safe and phthalate free”. I cringe to think what my first vibe was made of.

3. Sex sometimes involves weird noises, unexpected fluids and laughter. A healthy sex life involves having a sense of humor. Years ago, I was in bed with a former booty call of mine during a heat wave in Toronto. The sex was hot and our body temperatures were even hotter. We were SO sweaty that we were desperately clinging onto each other in fear that if we let go, we might actually slide off the bed. Because there was so much moisture, it created a suction cup effect. Every time we would separate our bodies, a funny farting sound would happen. The sex was so good we didn’t care. This kind of stuff happens. Bodies sometimes make strange noises. Periods arrive unexpectedly. If you’re not mature enough to deal with this & laugh it off with your partner, you’re probably not mature enough to be having sex.

4. Better awareness about condoms. Condoms come in all kinds of different textures, sizes, colors, lubricated/non-lubricated, ribbed/non-ribbed, pineapple flavor etc. Ahhh!!! It’s all very confusing!!! Not all of these condoms are going to work for you. For example, you might be allergic to latex, certain lubes or even spermicide. A sign you might be allergic to spermicide: your girl parts feel like they are on fire after coming in contact with it. True story.

5. Be careful, but don’t be terrified.  I came of age amidst the height of the AIDS crisis. In grade 11, our drama teacher brought in an HIV+ AIDS activist to speak to our class. He got up and gave us the following piece of confusing advice: “Kids, don’t fuck your way through Europe like I did” while we all stared at him, open jawed. Combined with a Catholic upbringing, I spent a lot of my late teens/early 20’s having a lot of fear & guilt around sex. I wish someone had just said, “You can have a healthy, fun sex life that’s also safe”

6. Sex Ed for Gay Students. If I felt like I wasn’t getting much out of sex ed class I can’t imagine how my gay classmates must have felt. There was hardly any mention of homosexuality except “It exists. Don’t be homophobic”. No one ever brought up how gay people actually get it on. It was only last year , while watching an episode of “The Real L-Word” that I learned what “scissoring” was all about.

7. If a guy says he doesn’t want to wear a condom, dump him. Guys will go to great lengths to get out of wearing a condom. This includes telling you stuff like “I love you & would feel so much closer to you without one.” I once had a 35-year old man tell me “Condoms just feel impersonal” (and getting/spreading an STD is way more personal) Recently, I also heard another 30-something guy say that his method for protecting himself from STD’s is to “pull out” (um, I don’t think it works that way buddy). Which brings me to #8…

8. Unfortunately, it’s likely some of the people you will sleep with will be morons. Until proven otherwise, assume everyone is as clueless as the guys I mentioned above & take your health into your own hands. Wrap. It. Up. Play safe.

9. Sex often comes with these messy things called FEEEEELINGS. In high school we were told “wait until you’re in a relationship or married” but life doesn’t always happen that way. When I was 18 I started having a slightly scandalous affair with a much older man. The first time we slept together, he came over, we had sex & then he went home 5 minutes later. Nothing could have prepared me for the sense of emptiness I felt after my first casual sex experience. As much as I tried to front like I was all tough & cool when it came to sex back then, the truth was I got attached to people after I slept with them. When those feelings weren’t reciprocated it hurt.

10. Whatever you’re into is OK. Do you want to be spanked? Does porn turn you on? Are you into guys and girls? As long as it’s consensual and no one is getting hurt, whatever you’re into is totally OK. Except maybe clown porn. That’s kind of weird.

What do you wish you had learned in Sex Ed? 

Sexis - a provocative sex magazine at EdenFantasys.com

*This post was sponsored by Eden Fantasys who kindly sent me a gift certificate in exchange for my over-sharing. As always, all opinions and sordid tidbits are my own. 

On Being 30 & Saying No.

There are some books that you read at the perfect time in your life.

This is the case with Julie Klausner‘s book “I Don’t Care about your Band: what I learned from Indie Rockers, Trust Funders, Pornographers, Felons, Faux Sensitive Hipsters and other Guys I’ve Dated“. Klausner wrote the book right before her 30th birthday as a humorous ode to the romantic collateral damage of her twenties. The book spoke to me because at the time I was also on the cusp of my 30th birthday and like Klausner, I’m also in the process of trying to make sense of everything that happened in my twenties and pull out whatever wisdom I can from the wreckage.


Klausner compares Kermit the Frog to the modern hipster guy (“Kermit the Frog is a terrible boyfriend”) and tells the story of dating “Douche Ziggy” a self-deprecating weirdo with a penchant for crazy sex. Although the details are slightly different, some of Klausner’s dating experiences are so close to my own that it almost feels like I could have written this book. Her stories are so witty & hilarious & achingly heartbreaking that I WISH I could say that I wrote this book. However, the chapter that resonated with me the most wasn’t really about dating at all – it was the final chapter of the book that describes Klausner’s first New Year’s Eve as a 30 year old.

I wrote quite a bit about all the stuff I wanted to do before my 30th birthday and what I did to celebrate but, I haven’t written anything about what it feels like to be on the other side of my twenties. Just like how sometimes you find the perfect book at the perfect moment, sometimes someone else is able to put into words what you haven’t been able to. This passage from the book perfectly describes how being 30 feels to me:

I remember walking to the lip of the building to better see the skyline of sweet, wide Manhattan and thinking about how good it felt to exist in a negative space. I know what I was not……I thought about how lucky I was to be different from how I was before. How I used to mistake “yes” for “yay!” and the pursuit of knowledge for the possession of it. I thought about how trivial people used to be better company to me than solitude and how I’d finally earned the ability to shut out clutter-at least occasionally – and to leave self-sabotage to the kids who can’t enjoy being alone now and then”.

In my twenties I said “Yes” to so many things. At 20, I was a young woman (girl) on her own for the first time in a city that at the time felt enormous. Everything was a new experience. I was so eager to soak up all the shiny newness around me that I often mistook “NEW” for “WORTHWHILE”. I just kept saying YES, YES, YES, unwilling to believe that the fire I was playing with was hot until I reached my hand in and felt the burn.

Go to a party at an abandoned warehouse at 4am
. YES!

Take off to Miami to party for a week with a guy you barely know. YES!

Go to a bar that smells like beer pee and stand around in uncomfortable shoes watching a band that sucks. YES!

Self-Medicate. Put lots of bad chemicals in your body. YES!

Do these things because it feels better than being alone on a Saturday night. YES!

Date someone who’s your complete opposite or totally inappropriate just for the novelty factor. YES!

Practice emotional cliff diving. Settle for half-baked relationships. Be the side-chick, the mistress, the friend with benefits. Sleep with your exes. Date guys with homes that look like the set of the latest Seth Rogan movie. Do all these things even though you know you want more. YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES!

In the early point in my twenties I feel like I just let life happen to me. I said “yes” to so many things that at times I felt like I was Alice, tumbling down the rabbit hole towards whatever new self-created chaos awaited me.

Eventually I learned that being alone felt so much better than having to deal with the fall-out of my bad choices. Somewhere in the later half of my twenties, it became so much easier to just say “NO” to situations that didn’t make me feel good.

Being 30 is about saying “NO” to all of that stuff that just no longer makes any sense.

Being 30 is about packing light. It’s about recognizing which people and things you should include in your life and which you shouldn’t. It’s about knowing what is a worthwhile use of your time. It’s about recognizing that if an opportunity seems less than awesome…its probably because it is. It’s about knowing when its OK to just say “NO” because you’ve lived enough to know there will be other opportunities that are more worthwhile if you are patient.

Being 30 is about saying “NO” to beating yourself up over all of your transgressions in your twenties. For a long time I let myself feel bad about a lot of the less than stellar choices I made when I was younger. But, life goes on. You can’t change the past. If I hadn’t done some of this crazy stuff or made mistakes I did, I probably wouldn’t have much to write about and this blog would probably be pretty boring.

Being 30 is about “owning it” – acknowledging your experiences for what they are and sharing them with others. It’s about saying “This is me…and I am OK with me”

(If you want to read a really good post about “owning it” I suggest you read this post by one of my favorite bloggers)

Being 30 is also about saying “YES” to the right things. Saying “yes” to working hard at the things you are passionate about. Saying “yes” to spending time with people who you love and who inspire you to be the best version possible of you.

Whether you’re planning an all-night dance party with friends, or booking a trip to Vegas to party with 99 people you’ve never met, Being 30 is about saying YES to having fun, 100% on your own terms.

Being 30 is about being able to say without any hesitation or regret, “I’m not putting on those uncomfortable shoes and going to that bar. I’m going to stay home and write because you know what? I don’t care about your band

I don’t know if feeling any of this stuff is exclusive to “turning thirty”. I think all of you have/will come to similar conclusions at different points in your life. For me, 30 has been the age where I have felt these emotions the strongest.

What do you guys think? Has there been a certain period of your life where you felt different that you were before? Is that time now?

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