TOP 5 LESSONS I'VE LEARNED IN 35 YEARS
I'm officially a little bit older and hopefully a little bit wiser!
I don't know about you, but for whatever reason, the half-decade milestones have given me more pause than the decade celebrations. After turning 35 on Friday, I spent time this weekend reflecting on what I've learned in my first 35 years of life. I'm humbled and grateful for each and every experience that led me to these truths. So without further ado, here are my favorite lessons from my first 35 years.
Count your blessings. Maybe I’m feeling nostalgic looking back on what was a really fast 35 years or maybe it’s the time I’ve been given during the pandemic to reflect on what really matters, but this year I am feeling incredibly thankful for everything good in my life. For the first time in a very long time, I have my priorities in order. Frankly, if this was the sum of all the blessings I'd ever accumulate, I’d be pretty darn happy with this life.
Finding The One is worth the wait. I cannot even begin to imagine my life without Tyler. He makes life so. much. fun! I didn’t marry him until I was nearly 30 years old, which really isn’t even that old, but when you live in the Midwest it definitely feels old. Waiting for Tyler meant there were some really lonely days—days that I hope I never feel again. But believe me, I’d go through every single one of those days again to end up where I am with him. I’m convinced that sharing life with your best friend is one of life’s greatest joys.
You are replaceable at work. What a gut punch to the ego! For a very long time, my identity was synonymous with my professional achievements. I've always given 1,000% at my job. I take great pride in solving hard problems, being a team player and truly wanting the best for my company, co-workers and clients. When I felt my employers didn’t value my passion and commitment in the way I thought I deserved, I left. My ego told me they would never again find someone who was so dedicated to the job. If I’m being brutally honest, I even thought my departure could impact the future of their business, if even just on a small level. But guess what? Each and every time I was easily replaced—sometimes with someone who had more experience or given a higher title! The nerve! :). Every single company I ever left is still around and thriving, so clearly my departure was not nearly as devastating as I thought it might be. Hello, ego check! This is probably one of my favorite lessons I’ve learned because it was one of the hardest for me to accept. I approach my career from a very different perspective today after learning this lesson.
Quit planning. Start living. I’ve always been goal-oriented (some may say obsessively...). Sure, the timing of my plan may have been a bit off in areas, but I’ve always known what I wanted and gone after it—relentlessly. Enter 2020. I don’t care what you thought 2020 was going to look like, this definitely wasn’t it. At the minimum, the pandemic dramatically affected what I thought my professional future would look like. Suddenly I was forced to realize I'm not totally in control (despite my best efforts)—and that’s a good thing! Life is way more fun when you loosen up and enjoy the journey instead of only celebrating what you think should be the milestones!
Keep the faith. I saved the best for last. It’s simple—appreciate all of life’s blessings. Find joyful moments in every day. And when things get tough, keep the faith.
What about you? What are some of your favorite lessons you've learned? I'd love to read them in the comments section!
P.s. Check out my birthday cake from The Cake Bake Shop in Carmel City Center! Isn't it beautiful?! The picture doesn't even do it justice! It was almost too pretty to eat...almost! I can confirm that it tastes as good as it looks.)