Oh damn, I turned 30 my life is over… noooo! Get a grip, life starts after 30. There are so many possibilities to do all those things you always wanted to do but never had time or cash to do it. After 30 is the time to rock properly!
Let’s look at the stages in life till we reach 30. First – you are stuck at home with your parents. You go to school, and you are very much dependent on your parents. Meaning their house, their rules. Maybe you have ideas about what to do with your spare time, but you are limited. Mostly limited by lack of cash and possibilities. Second – you are stuck at university and some not well-paid jobs. You have your freedom as you probably moved out of your parents’ house. No more my house, my rules. You have ideas and possibilities, but you are somehow limited by constant lack of cash. Let’s face it, the part time jobs pay for your rent and wild parties but there is nothing more left for self-development. That under the condition that you are an independent individual and don’t take cash from your parents. Third – you finished university, you went through some crappy jobs to get some working experience and after a couple of years you can confidently say, yeah, I wanna do something extraordinary.
As you reach your 30’s by that time, you have a better job, a better paycheck and endless possibilities. Plus! You are more mature than in your 20’s and you have a different more relaxed approach towards life.
Also, you know what you want and need and what is completely not your cup of tea. Meaning if you take up a sport for example is because you want to do it. The activity gives you pleasure, and you like doing it. An example. There is a girl in my pole dancing class. I reckon she is still at high school as she mentioned a couple of times that she needs to prepare for a history class test. Other people in the class are from mid 20’s till mid 30’s. When we need to practice a new trick, everybody tries hard to do it, apart from that teenager. She pretends that she did try the new trick but mostly she stands around doing nothing. Many times, the instructor tried to help her with a trick where you hang upside down, but she said that she is scared. So, my question is what the hell are you doing in a pole dancing class if you just stand around doing nothing? Told that to my friend KM and I think his answer made very much sense. KM told me – come on Alice, probably her parents insisted on sending her to those pole dance classes. She didn’t want it, was afraid to tell the parents that doesn’t want it. Ergo, she has no inside passion for the training. That’s the point, till our 30’s we do things because we were forced to do it, or we had to do it. OK fine sometimes we do stuff because we want to. Well, after our 30’s we have to go to work every day but after work we can do all those things we want to.
There was a time in my life where I was very much focused on studying, working for 12 hours a day because I was chasing after… right after what? Now I don’t even remember what I was chasing after. I had the feeling that I was missing out on life. On all those things I always wanted to do but never got a chance to do it.
Although I can’t say that I wasn’t doing anything for fun at all. Most of my mid 20’s till now I spent on traveling and scuba diving. Will tell you more about that in the next post – travel after 30 😉 However, I didn’t do so many things… and that scared the shit out of me. Hence this year I decided to get a grip, work on my work life balance, and not miss out on life anymore. So, I started skiing, wakeboarding, pole dancing, rollerblading, discovering Kraków from a different side. Also meeting my friends more often and meeting those friends which I didn’t see for quite some time – like 15 years 😛 Think it worked. Once my friend from the office told me – Alice, can I ask you something, as you are the only person from my friend’s circle that actually enjoys life. The question was about travel destinations 😛 So here we have the magic word – enjoying life. Now, what does enjoying life mean?
In the movie Eat, Pray Love with Julia Roberts there is a scene in a barber shop in Rome. The dialogue goes something like this:
Luca Spaghetti: You feel guilty because you’re American. You don’t know how to enjoy yourself!
Liz Gilbert: I beg your pardon?
Luca Spaghetti: It’s true. Americans know entertainment, but don’t know pleasure.
Giovanni: This is Luca Spaghetti, by the way, you know.
Liz Gilbert: Your name is Luca Spaghetti?
Luca Spaghetti: Yes, that’s what our family is called. We invented it. I’m serious. Listen to me. You want to know your problem? Americans! You work too hard. You get burned out. Then you come home and spend the whole weekend… in your pajamas in front of the TV.
Liz Gilbert: That’s not far off, actually.
Luca Spaghetti: But you don’t know pleasure. You have to be told you’ve earned it. You see a commercial that says, “It’s Miller time”… and you say, “That’s right. Now I will go to buy a six-pack”. And drink the whole thing and wake up the next morning and you feel terrible. But an Italian doesn’t need to be told. He walks by a sign that says, “You deserve a break today”… and he says, “Yeah, I know. That’s why I’m planning on taking a break at noon… to go over to your house and sleep with your wife”.
Apart from the sleep with your wife thing it’s very true. Also presume that at least 75% of the world’s population doesn’t know how to enjoy themselves… so with all due respect to Luca it’s not only an American thing 😛
Regardless if going with friends to a horror house or on a spontaneous 15 km walking trip outside the city or having a drink with an amazing group of people you just met on the train… enjoy each moment
For me, enjoying life for example is to sit down with a glass of wine on the windowsill in my apartment and look at the beautiful Kraków panorama thinking about all those things I’m grateful for. Also enjoying life for me is going out with my friends to a bar and ordering tequila shots although I perfectly know how that’s gonna end up… massive hungover the day after. Not sure why but I have the strong impression that to enjoy life, firstly you should be happy with yourself. You know the feeling when you wake up, look in the mirror and say – hey you, you are awesome! Until four years ago, when looking in the mirror in the morning I felt – oh it’s you again, you’re a failure. Don’t how and when it changed. I can’t give you a golden rule or hint about what to do to feel good with yourself. Think it just comes with time… yeah I’m not a very patient person. One day four years ago I woke up, looked in the mirror and thought – oh hello, who are you, you amazing person? Maybe it had to do something with my thinking slowly changing from HAVE TO to CAN DO. Maybe the don’t give a damn factor has risen or maybe I made a stop and thought about what I expect from life…. or maybe all the above. Regardless of what it was since then I can confidently say that my world changed colours from grey to all shades of the rainbow. Ahhhhh got psychological… Anyway, back to enjoying life in the 30’s.
After you deal with all those emotions you carry inside you, you will think… oh, why not, let’s do it. Faced many situations like that lately. For example, in April this year I got a cherry blossom tree tattoo on my back. When my friend saw it, she said… hmmm you should get birds flying to the tree as well. Well, good idea, why not.
Sooooo yesterday I got a new tattoo… five hummingbirds. And it looks pretty damn awesome 😀 Another example. Last week my friend KM suggested we go to a go-kart track to drive some circles. My response was – hell yeah! Count me in… and we are going tomorrow. Point is that during your 30’s you have possibilities to do all those things you wanted to do in your 20’s but never got to for various reasons. Now is the time!
Hang on… just came to my mind. The 30’s are like being the main character in the movie YES MAN. Maybe not say yes to everything but to most stuff. If you think that in your 30’s you are too old to buy for yourself helium filled balloons at a fair, play boardgames, go to concerts, to nice restaurants or even spend the whole day in bed if you are in the mood for it. You are not too old. Remember you are as old as you feel… and da hell what others think if they see you laughing on a swing at a playground. You definitely shouldn’t feel guilty about enjoying life 🙂