Eekk! The countdown has started. My 40th birthday is less than a month away. How did I get here already? I feel as though there is no way enough time has gone by for me to be turning 40. However, there are many lessons that I have learned through my almost four decades on this earth. I have really been sitting with what I have learned over the years, and what I plan to do for the next decade. I thought I would share some of my top lessons learned and advice.
The first decade - Free, fearless, carefree, fun, outgoing, bold, playful, stubborn, loving, loveable, caring, are a few words that come to me when I think of my first 10 years in this world. It's a world of wonder and curiosity. We are asking the infamous who, what, where, why and how questions ALL THE TIME. We may get on our parents nerves by asking so many questions. I know I always asked questions. As parents, we have a choice. We can let it annoy us or we can have an appreciation for our children and their curiosity and use it as an opportunity to teach them.
We are dependent on our parents to care for us by providing food, clothing and shelter as well as unconditional love, approval and acceptance. Sadly, there are some children who do not receive all of these. I was very fortunate to have parents and family who did give this to me. I was loved deeply and giving all the needs a child could want. As age 9 and 10 rolled around, I started to recognize body sensations. I did not know what this was; however, it started with knowing if I liked someone or not during their first time meeting them. I would feel distant. I had developed my own intuition, and started paying attention to it. I couls sense negative energy immediately. However, I did not realize this is what it was until much later in life.
FIRST DECADE LESSON - Enjoy the curiosity of learning this world. Ask questions then ask more questions. Enjoy being a kid. There is no need to rush growing up. I promise it will come fast enough.
As 11-19 aproached, I would say these are the hardest years. We go through puberty which, in my opinion, SUCKS. Our bodies change, grow and we feel straight up awkward at times. I found myself picked on a lot due to my weight and the fact I had been wearing glasses since age 2. I say that during this decade, we are attempting to find our place in this world. It can be confusing and frustrating. We are mentally and emotionally changing. We begin to desire more freedom and independence as we get our driver's license. We somehow decide that we know more than our parents and they become dumb. Parents simply just do not understand! (If you are around my age, you may recall DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince of Belaire) We get jobs and go off to college. I recall my first job at age 16. I worked at a dry cleaners doing customer service. I remember being so proud of my first paycheck and my dad helping me to get my bank account set up. My first check was written to Little Ceasar's Pizza. I will always remember that check as it was a sense of independence.
Going off to college was scary and exciting. Once I got into the routine at East Carolina University, I knew enough to make a decision to transfer OUT. ECU was a larger university, and I learned a lesson about myself. I wanted something smaller. I was in college to get my degree not to party every night. ECU used to be known as one of the top party schools. As of today, it is still ranked in the top 60 party schools in the US. I followed my intuition, and applied at Meredith College which was back home in Raleigh, NC. I had always said I would NEVER go to an all girls schools. I applied to Meredith, and when Christmas break came, I had not hearrd back regarding my acceptance. I took a huge leap of faith, packed up all my belongings in my dorm room and went home. I mailed my keys back to the school, and did not even register for the next semester. I did not know what was going to happen other than I was not going back to ECU. I got home and still no word from Meredith. The morning of January 5th, my cell phone range at about 7:30am. It was Meredith admissions letting me know that I had been accepted. Classes begin on Wednesday, and they did not have time to send me a letter. Oh, and I needed to be on campus at noon for registration. To say the least, I was beyond excited and was there by noon!
SECOND DECADE LESSON - Never. Say. Never. What we resist will persist. Trust and have faith that all things are working out in your favor. It was one of the BEST decisions I made. I trusted myself and God to know it would all work out as it was supposed to. Meredith was the perfect place for me, and I am forever grateful for my education. You can trust yourself.
I recall graduation day from Meredith. I was a young, eager, hungry, vibrant 22 year old. I was so ready for a full time job. I worked three jobs in college and paid for my own tuition. Graduating and being able to only work one job was going to be a relief for me. It was amazing. I had found a group of girlfriends whom I loved spending time with hanging out and partying. We had a lot of fun. It was 5 months after graduating. I had a job and apartment I loved. I got news that my company was merging all locations into their Atlanta office. I had a choice to stay in Raleigh, NC and find a new job or transfer to Atlanta. After much debating, I took another leap of faith and moved to Atlanta, GA. Raleigh was nowhere as big as Atlanta, so it was an adjustent. In my opinion, my second decade was a wreck. I was learning who I was. I realied that I was one STRONG and INDEPENDENT woman who was lost inside. My 25th birthday was similar to a mid-life crisis yet it was a quarter life crisis. There was nothing about 25 that I enjoyed. As I approached the age of 26, I realized I needed help from a professional to change some of the family patterns that I was seeing show up over and over again. God led me to one of my life heroes, Patricia Brown. She was instrumental for getting me wehre I am today. This was the beginning of an uphill climb to becoming the BEST ME I can ever be.
THIRD DECADE LESSON: My 20's were all about finding myself and learning that asking for help is not a weakness. It is a sign of strength. I learned that I could do anything if I put my mind to it. I was faced with challenges I was not sure I would overcome yet I DID and I did with grace, persistence and determination.
Ahh, 30 arrived swiftly and with fire. I was more confident, and was ready for the next stage of life. I had a great job, making great money and had bought my first house. I had achieved success in my book. As my 30's moved on, I was faced with the death of my father, grandmother, great uncle, cousin and my pet cat, Oscar. I dealt with failed relationships. I learned that it is ok to say NO and set boundaries. It is impossible to please everyone and grief is tough. I made a commitment to change my life. I made vision boards, and began focusing on what I wanted in life not what I did not want. I spoke it out loud, I wrote it, I thought it and I envisioned it daily. The end of my thirties turned around. Unexpectedly, I met my husband who was, and is, EVERYTHING I had always wanted and more! Our wedding was the absolutel most perfect day, and better than I have imagined. I left my corporate job, and now work as a full time life coach. I LOVE WHAT I DO! I am beyond blessed with everything I had visioned for years plus two of the best bonus children a woman could have. I have a strong relationship with my bonus son and daughter that is filled with respect and love.
FOURTH DECADE LESSON: Focus on what you want in life. Trust God's timing and that He will deliver. If you are single, start becoming the person you want to attract. When you hit a valley, in life, know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. It will get better. Ask for help! Love Yourself! Stay positive! Just be YOU! Shine BRIGHT!
Here, I am 30 days away from turning 40. I am super excited to see what the next decade holds. I am focusing on what I want to create in the next ten years. I know a few things. There will be ups and downs always. I know I will get through them, and now I have a family, of my own, by my side. I take all the lessons I have learned throughout my 39 years into my 40's. I am choosing to enter this decade FABULOUSLY FIERCE. I see so many good thigns on the horizon. My time is NOW. Your time is NOW.
#Resource The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer