I celebrated turning 34 yesterday. In my twenties, anything over thirty felt old, but now that I’m hear, I sort of think I’m doing my very best living and it feels very much like ME.
In looking back on the last year, I thought I’d share some lessons I’ve learned – about myself, about life, and about learning to embrace your best life because we could all use these little reminders along the way.
1. Entrepreneurship = HARD.
This year, I started a business with my sister-in-law to snag first dibs on leggings and made some extra side money for our families. Almost 8 months in and I can assuredly tell you that it is not just a side thing. It is consuming, difficult, and fulfilling all rolled into one amazing package – sleepless nights, stress level midnight, and the ups and downs that go with any amazing thing in life. We experience it all. God has different plans for our little business, so we have learned to shift focus and come along for the ride – and what a wild one it has been.
2. Give generously.
Because of this business, I’ve had the pleasure of spreading more smiles than I originally intended. Giving recklessly, generously, and whenever we get the opportunity has filled my cup so much I can hardly stand it. It is my love language and one that I have been able to fully embrace this past year.
3. Care less.
You’re probably thinking, but you just said give more? Isn’t that caring more? Actually, this is caring less about what other people think. You would be surprised how many people have opinions about you and your life. Believe me, as my business grows and as my presence on social media goes, people sure seem to have a lot of opinions about me and what I do – sometimes, they are the stuff of warm fuzzies and sometimes, they are people looking to bring you down and sometimes, they are people who are just rude.
But at the end of the day, my self-worth does not come from some person on the internet. It is not defined by someone who makes a judgment about me because of their perception of me based on a snippet of my life. And as such, I am learning (because this one is always in progress) that I need to care less about what other people think of me and more about what I think of myself. Because that is ultimately who this world needs – the real me.
4. Dream big.
33 was all about dreaming big and watching life get even bigger than you could ever imagine. It’s about putting that positive energy into the universe and watching life unfold in a way that is both mysterious and amazing. It’s about taking chances when you’d rather stay home in your pajamas.
5. This IS me.
#5 isn’t so much for me as it is for all of you. Sometimes, people wonder if I am as outlandish and over the top as I appear on the interwebs. The answer is yes. It’s not attention seeking – it’s not all about me – it’s not trying to impress anyone – it’s not trying to be dramatic or popular or any of the in-between. The people who really know me – the people who really love and embrace me – get me. They will be the ones to tell you that yes, this IS me – in all of her colorful glory. So I won’t apologize for being over the top – just like I won’t ask you to be something that you’re not. And believe me, if you thought this was all an act to gain popularity, rest assured that I have made my fair share of haters over the course of this year too. And to that, I defer to #3.
33 was about a continuous evolution of self-discovery and learning to give the world (and ME) my very best self. I hope 34 is just as full of adventure, excitement, and changes because 33 has been one of my favorite years on this planet yet and I cannot wait to see what the next 365 days has in store for me (and you!)
Cheers to 34!