Society often puts benchmarks on where we should be based on our age. Walk at 2. Drive at 16. College at 18. But by the time we turn 30, it’s different. For many, the pressure of life gets heavy and we somehow believe that we should have met all of our goals and we should finally have it all figured out. When in fact, it’s quite the contrary; when we reach 30 we are just getting started.
In our adolescence, we begin to adapt to the world and become aware of our uniqueness and individuality. We navigate relationships for the first time and make judgments on who we bond with based on commonalities. During this time, we find friends and discover the dangers and joys of popularity. We may find our first crush and have our first heartbreak. In every situation, we continue to evolve and ultimately transition into the next phase of our lives with a little knowledge and a lot of optimism.
When we reach our 20s we enter a transformative time that is designed to mold us into our adult selves. We experience more freedom than we’ve ever known and live recklessly. In these years, we are catapulted into the “real world” where we will ultimately make mistakes and reap the consequences. We will choose partners we don’t love, careers we aren’t passionate about, and we ride the wave to hopefully, find our true selves on the other side, trying desperately not to drown as we make our way through.
After years of self-discovery, suddenly we find ourselves staring down the door that opens to our 30th birthday and we contemplate if, after all the tests and triumphs, we are where we really want to be in life. Societal timestamps convince us that the clock has run out and our years to reach our goals are over.
The truth is that we never stop growing and our opportunities to pursue our passions are infinite; growth and change are indicators that we are still alive. As long as we live, we will continue to develop and with that development, we can continue to figure out our purpose on the planet, and go after the things we really want in life.
Turning 30 is not an expiration date on our goals or our growth. It’s an opportunity to take the lessons from our past and use them to move wisely into the future. It is the beginning of a new chapter, built on knowledge and experience.
It provides a chance to continue discovering who we are and what we want out of life.
Keep learning. Keep evolving. You’re just getting started.