I have 4 months left as a 29 year old and it is safe to say that turning the big ol’ 30 has been playing on my mind lately. I don’t mind growing older, its kind of inevitable and it happens to everyone so I don’t see the point of complaining about it. I have been thinking about it though. So much happens between the age of 20- 30, I would argue even more than what happens between 0-20. There were so many firsts, so many changes, so many life disasters, so much growing, so many hormones and emotions.
I guess what has also been rolling around in my head is this idea that we are supposed to have it all sorted by thirty (well that’s at least what popular culture and perhaps advertising tells me). In some ways I do have my shiz sorted. I don’t have any of the toxic relationships of my early twenties, I don’t live pay check to pay check and I don’t struggle as much to keep the balance between work life, social life and overall well being (22 year old me was all over the show with all the above). This all makes for a calmer life.
And yet I still don’t feel as though I have it all together. I still struggle with the fact that I don’t feel I am on a career path that I love and on my worst days I worry that I will spend so long doing something I don’t love that I will wake up at some point, feeling like I left it too late.
There are other weird social things I didn’t expect too, at 29 I feel completely at ease with some people but then I can experience more social anxiety with some other people than I ever did as a 21 year old. At 21 I would have just chatted through it, now I can sit in company and not one semi interesting thing to say will roll through my brain.
I know that more often than not what fuels this anxious fire of not having my life sorted is comparison. In my logical brain I know that comparing myself with others is a pointless, harmful exercise. Yet I do it over and over again and I reckon I am not the only one. I compare myself against the achievements of total strangers which when I think about it is totally bonkers. I reckon going into my 30s I am going to try and do less of that.
Also in my 30s I am going to try and chill out a bit more (oh wait I can start that now in my 20s) and stop putting so much pressure on myself. After all life is a continuum, there is not one wheel that stops at 30 and another one that starts up again. In this sense age is quite irrelevant, it is just a way to mark the time. I want to believe what matters is all the little things I do each day which add up to big things over time and make me feel like I am on the right track.