Last September, I turned 30.
When I was a kid, I often thought of what my life would be like by this age. Am I disappointed? In some respects, yes but I think it's safe to say that everyone feels like that to an extent.
I may not have the millions I dreamed about just yet, but I have picked up some things along the way. Once the big 3-0 hits, you start to see things differently.
Here are 30 ways you see the world differently when you're 30.
1. More people want to see you succeed than fail.
Your 20s come with a big chip that goes right on your shoulder. You think the whole world is out to get you and everyone wants to see you fail.
As you turn 30, you begin to realize, that's not entirely the case. Many people actually want to see you succeed.
2. You tend to reconnect with old friends.
As you get older, you tend put grudges aside. You start reaching out more, especially to the friends that you lost touch with. Thanks, social media!
3. The loudest person in the room is often the most insecure.
Denzel Washington said this best in “American Gangster.”
We often spend our 20s idolizing the brashest and obnoxious people. When you're in your 30s that starts to change. You start seeing value in the modest and laid back lifestyle.
4. People don't give a damn how you look.
(For the most part.)
People of all ages care about looks but in your 20s, it's a spectator sport. The truth of the matter is, people are not as obsessed with our looks as we are.
People can't sniff out our insecurities either unless we show our hand.
5. People do give a damn how you smell.
Looks aren't everything. But smell, on the other hand, is EVERYTHING. A good perfume, cologne or body wash goes a long way… trust me.
6. If you don't ask, you definitely won't receive.
As it's written: “You do not have because you do not ask.” That goes for so many things: fun, job opportunities, even love.
If you spend your 20s too afraid to ask, you'll regret it in your 30s
7. Sleeping in is hard to do.
I don't know the exact science of it but since I've turned 30, I can't sleep in anymore. I used to be a legendary sleeper and now I can't stay in bed past 11.
8. Dreams are gone.
Not your dreams but real dreams, sleeping dreams. Everyone dreams every night. But since I turned 30, I never seem to remember them.
They say don't stop believing, but when you hit 30, it's like you stop dreaming.
9. Health is so IMPORTANT.
If you take anything from the list, let it be this: Your health is your foundation.
If you're healthy, you're in the game. For most of us, our 20s are the time we take our health for granted. Once you hit 30, you're reminded that little things can turn into big things.
In your 30s, stuff starts to creak and crack. It takes you longer to recover from things. So go to your doctor and try to eat better; it goes a long way.
10. Your family plays a big role in who you are.
We may hate to admit it but our family plays a huge role in the person we become.
We spend our 20s rebelling against this notion but when you get 30, you look at yourself and then look at the people around you only to realize how alike you actually are.
Hopefully, that's a good thing.
11. Staying in is the new going out.
If you don't know the virtues of staying in, ask someone in their 30s. If you're younger, it may seem crazy but there is pure bliss in coming home on a Friday or Saturday night and just zoning out. It's the bee's knees!
12. Sacrifice pays off.
The deeper you journey into your 20s, the more sacrifices you will make. At first, it's hard, but the older we get, the easier it becomes.
You may start bringing lunch from home to save money or switch to a value brand cereal. It's all for the better.
You're a gardener planting seeds. Your 30s is when you start to see real reap the harvest.
13. Old habits die hard.
Smoking, drinking, overeating, anger whatever it may be, it gets harder to quit once your 30s roll around.
The longer you do something, the harder it is to stop. It becomes second nature. So if there are things you don't like about yourself or want to quit, try doing it before 30.
14. Time flies by.
I still think the year 2000 was 10 years ago! It's almost 20!
Time seemingly stands still in your 20s. When I was in my 20s, it seemed like it would take forever for my birthday to come. Now it seems like my birthday comes every six months… scary, I know.
15. Memory loss.
In your 20s, you seem to have a memory like a steel trap… at least I did.
Now I can't remember things I did a few months ago, let alone a few years ago. In junior high school, I once asked my science teacher if he remembered his junior high science teacher?
He said no. I said, “How could you forget?” He said wait till you get to my age. I'm about 25 years away, but I already know what he means.
16. You don't get the benefit of the doubt anymore.
When you're in your 20s and you mess up, there are plenty of people who will pick you up and dust you off. As Morgan Freeman put it in “Lean on Me,” “You're a baby and you don't know shit.”
That crap changes in your 30s. When you mess up… you mess up. No one is going to reassure you you'll do better next time. Ain't nobody got time for that!
17. Work sometimes is its own reward.
There IS dignity in a hard day's work.
My mother loves to work. And not just for money. She learned from my grandfather. For them, work wasn't something you just did for money; work was something that gave you pride.
They told me, no matter what you do, as long as it's legal, you should be proud. Being a productive member of society is one of the best feelings in life.
When you're in your 30s, it really starts to hit you.
18. Increased sensitivity.
When I was in my 20s, sometimes I could be as cold as ice.
I could see a homeless person and pass right by without a second thought, or see a sad movie and laugh.
Once you move into your 30s, you get emotional. Why? By that time you've been around the block, and now you can empathize with people because you know what real struggle is all about.
19. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
In our 20s, we spend our lives in search of comfort. We treat discomfort like the plague. But discomfort can be good; it allows us to what's wrong and force us to change.
And if we never change, we'll always stay the same.
20. People rely on you.
The older you get, the more the people around you or rely on you. If you're reading this and have kids, you already know that. If you don't, know this.
When you creep up to 30, more responsibility will be put on you.
You're expected to rise to the occasion. Picking up people from the airport, helping people move, taking your grandparents to the doctor, and everything in between.
By the time you hit 30, you truly know the meaning of responsibility.
21. Politics matter.
Now before the 2016 election, this might have been a tougher sell.
If you're not into politics by the time you hit 30 you probably never will be. The “boring” issues that politicians speak about actually start affecting your life in tangible ways.
When I was younger, I didn't give a damn about social security. Now that I'm closer to needing it, I care. Thankfully younger people seem to get this these days.
It's true what they say: With age comes wisdom. Funny thing about wisdom is, it creeps up on you.
When you least expect it, you say some philosophical crap out of nowhere. You will impress others and yourself.
23. Less Material.
Human beings tend to be materialistic.
In our 20s, we often think everything that glitters seems like gold, but by the time you hit the dirty 30, you start to realize simplicity is best.
You begin appreciating the things you do have.
24. Vulnerability comfortability.
Vulnerability is like Kryptonite when you're in your 20s.
We often try to act like things don't bother us. We like people to believe that things slide off our backs like rain off of a sloped roof, but that's not true.
There's value in being vulnerable.
Things do hurt us. We do have feelings and by 30, you start to see there's value in being vulnerable.
It makes us more human.
25. Casual sex becomes less appealing.
In your 20s, casual sex seems like the ultimate prize because when you're young, getting something for nothing is exhilarating.
By 30, you start to realize sex should come with feelings, not just physical feelings -- but emotional feelings.
26. Porn becomes funny.
To piggyback off the casual sex thing, once you start equating sex with emotion, porn starts to become a comedy show.
It's so far from real sex, it's not even funny… wait. It actually is!
27. Going out in bad weather turns your joy to ashes in your mouth.
You may think I'm being dramatic, but the closer you get to 30, the more bad weather annoys you.
I remember when I was a teenager and in my 20s, I used to go out and play sports in the rain. Now I don't even want to go to the store in the rain let alone play anything.
28. Less patience for bullshit.
Let's be honest: When we're in our 20s, we tend to live for drama. By the time you're 30, drama is just so exhausting.
There are people right now that I should be mad at. I'm just too tired to do it.
29. Dreams become goals.
Your 20s are for dreams, your 30s is when they mature to goals.
Think of it this way; dreams are original Pokemon and goals are their evolved form. Dreams are things that you want to happen goals are things that you're going to make happen. It's all about mindset.
30. You kinda like yourself.
Besides the health stuff, this is the most important of all. We spend our 20s trying to find out who we are, and once we do, sometimes we don't like the person we find.
It could be from good reason, and sometimes it's for superficial reasons.
If the latter is the case, by the time you get 30, you actually start to like yourself.
For better or worse, it's who you are and no one is better at being you than you.
So there you have it: 30 things you learn by 30.
Take it from us. Be prepared.