I fell for the 30 lie when I was in my teens and twenties. You know, the lie that says you'll have your life all figured out and perfected by that third decade.
Maybe it was the movie "13 Going on 30" that did it. I just pictured myself at 30 with a life that reeked of fulfillment, joy, and purpose. I would get up everyday with my sleek body, put on a professional outfit, and step outside of my home worthy of a magazine to greet the day with a smile. I would know exactly who I was and what I wanted. I would have achieved my goals and be living a life where everyday felt full of purpose and passion.
I fell for the 30 lie...and then, when I turned 30, it all sort of crumbled.
I realized very quickly after blowing out those 30 candles that the movies, society, the magazines that seem to suggest your 20s are for exploring and your 30s are where it's at....well, they missed some important points.
Like the point that no one really figures it all out by a certain age. Like that, as cheesy as it sounds, it's truly about the journey.
The thing is: there is no endpoint in our self-fulfillment journeys. We are always evolving, changing, growing, and learning (if we're doing this life thing remotely right). What we think we want at 30 might not be what we want at 32 anymore. And that dream we had in our teens might not fulfill us any longer in our 40s. Life is truly about changing, and, thus, we sometimes must change our visions for life, too.
Then, of course, there's the fact that life never quite goes as we expect it. Unexpected tragedies, surprises, and opportunities crop up. Sometimes, the path we thought we were on falls out from under us and we are left floundering.
I've come to learn in my 30s that this thing called life is a winding journey. It's never done. It's never flattened out.
I think the best we can do is commit to a life where we constantly assess what we want, what makes us happy, and where our passions are. There is no such thing as a perfect life, but there is such a thing as perfecting our reflective powers to figure out where are passions lie at different points in our life.
So, this year, I hope you take some time, no matter what your age, to reassess.
*What do you LOVE?
*When are you happiest?
*Do you have more good days than bad?
*What are the blessings in your life?
*What do you wish you had more of in your life?
And then, once you've reflected on that, I hope you find a way to bring more into your life this year--more joy, more passion, and more moments that make you feel peace.
If you're doing that, no matter what age you are, I think you'll find that this life is crazy beautiful and fulfillment although everchanging, is possible.
There's something magic about this time of year, the days right before the calendar switches.
I know, I know: You can set goals and change your routine any time of the year. You don't have to wait for January 1st.
Still, I love the symbolism in that blank page, that whole year ahead. I love the idea of setting goals, of dreaming dreams, and of trying to set intentions for a better version of yourself.
This year, in 2022, I'm getting focused on my truest passion: writing. I'm chasing my big, wild dream of being a NYT bestseller. I'm focusing in on my writing and paring down my schedule to chase my biggest passions.
I'm making self-care a priority, which means saying "no" to some things and simplifying. It means prioritizing and asking the hard question: What truly makes me happy?
I'm going into 2022 feeling ready to live more passionately and to stop apologizing (thank you, Rachel Hollis) for being my truest self.
I hope that you are doing the same. I hope you have your eye on 2022 as well, and I hope it fills you with excitement.
We've got this. Let's go get our dreams, friends.
Stay Safe and Be True,
USA TODAY Bestselling Thriller author with Avon Books (HarperCollins), The Widow Next Door, The Diary of a Serial Killer's Daughter, and other creepy thriller books