Verdict on my first year in my thirties
In my 30th birthday blog post last year (click here for a read of that) I ended the post by saying I would embrace uncertainty in my thirties. This made me chuckle when I just re-read it because I have certainly done that over the last twelve months!
As we know, embracing uncertainty does not come naturally to me (what with my control freakish tendencies and all) but sometimes in life we have no choice but to roll with the punches. On my 30th I was thinking…”oooh maybe I’ll have a baby or be pregnant by my next birthday” and that’s not happened so that’s been the biggest thing to get my head around but I’m ok about it and I genuinely mean that. Over the last year I have gained a greater sense that things pan out in the way they are supposed to and it’s been a great learning curve in terms of letting go of control and living in the moment a little more.
Some other things have happened which were totally unexpected and not in my ‘plan’ which, whilst at the time, caused a fair amount of stress and worry, have also been a fantastic learning experience.
So you may get a sense from the above that my first year in my thirties hasn’t been great. At times, it’s felt that way BUT I really believe that obstacles and challenges are disguised as opportunities. Yes, I have days when I’m down in the dumps and think the world is against me, we all do, but I also think it’s so vital that we use the ‘not-so-great’ stuff in life to our advantage.
I fully accept that the ‘every cloud has a silver lining’ and the ‘glass is half full’ approach is often hard to apply to life, especially when you’re going through a tough time but making even tiny adjustments in our thinking and the stories we tell ourselves can make a huge difference to our day-to-day happiness.
Here are some ideas for taking a more positive approach to the challenges life throws at us:
- Imagine it’s happening to someone else If your best friend was going through the same situation and stuck in a spiral of negativity or ‘poor me’ syndrome what would you say to them to shift their thinking? Apply the same compassion and kindness to yourself.
- Will this matter in a year’s time? It’s so easy to get bogged down with focusing on the negative. If something is hi-jacking your thoughts far more than you’d like question whether it really matters. Will you be thinking of this in a year’s time, in five years’ time, ten years etc?
- Focus on the solution, not the problem Are you spending crazy amounts of time thinking about how you’re not happy with a situation? Dwelling on the problem will get you nowhere. Brainstorm solutions, seek advice if needed and take action.
Let’s face it, if we didn’t have challenges in life how could we ever appreciate the good times. My recent holiday came at a time when I was really stressed and I’ve never appreciated a holiday so much and soaked up every single moment. When things aren’t good we tend to look out for more negative stuff which often leads to more negative situations. Next time you’re having a bad day/week/year turn it on it’s head and make the effort to spot the good stuff. It’s all around us when we look for it, it’s just a case of shifting our focus.
I’ve experienced loads of happy times as a 30 year old and my overriding achievement is the way in which I’ve used the harder times to develop myself. I’ve become even more passionate about self-development and the power of the mind and how we are ultimately the masters of our own destiny. Without the life lessons I’ve learned over the last year I wouldn’t have grown this year (metaphorically speaking obviously, 6ft is tall enough thank you) and I’d like to share some lessons I’ve learned in this blog so keep your eyes peeled for those.
So, like last year, I will continue to embrace uncertainty but I will also really look at how I am responding to the things that happen in life. We can’t always control what happens in life, but we can control how we react to it. I feel like I am starting life as a 31 year old with a fire in my belly to make some changes to ensure I am living the best life possible and seeking happiness in the present moment, as that’s all we have.