I swear I was just celebrating my 29th birthday. My husband threw me a surprise party which we referred to as my “forever 29” birthday and that title still rings true. I will forever feel 29. I have been through SOME THINGS in these last 10 years since that day. This blog and my business certainly wouldn’t exist if it hadn’t been for the lessons I’ve learned since that 29th birthday.
My favorite picture from my 38th year
I’m not a big birthday celebrator. I do, however, do a lot of reflecting around this time every year though. Anyone else like that? This week I’m sharing a peek inside my brain as I celebrate my birthday with 39 things I know for sure.
- It’s ok to like what you like. Love wearing black everyday even though you’re “supposed to mix it up?” Wear that black wardrobe proudly! Love your short hair even though your stylist tells you your face shape would do better with a longer style? Thanks, but no thanks!
- Your quality of life can be drastically improved by the people you surround yourself with. You’ve probably heard the saying “you are like the 5 people you hang around” which is absolutely true. Digging even deeper though, the person you share you life with, the best friends you have, the coworkers you engage with, all make a huge difference in the quality of your life. So if you’re unhappy, start by looking at who you’re choosing to surround yourself with.
- Something that feels like the best fit for you in one season can feel wrong in the next season and that is OK. Shift things around, switch things up, press pause, or walk away if needed. Not everything is meant to be a forever in your life.
- You are allowed to be a work in progress and help others grow at the same time. In fact you probably have a lot to offer if you are in the middle of a growth season yourself.
- Being genuinely curious about people is one of the best parts of life. No agenda, no motive. Just ask people questions about themselves. You will learn a lot, and they will feel heard. Everyone wins.
- Almost everything that stresses you out about parenting is a phase. When you’re in the thick of it, it feels like a bottomless pit. But after almost 14 years of parenting I have learned to ride the wave because it doesn’t last and something great is around the corner.
- You may not love every part of your job, but if you aren’t fired up for the mission of what you’re doing, it might be time to switch things up. I can honestly say that I’m in a place where I’m fired up every day to do the work I’m doing and I want everyone to feel the same.
- If you still have both of your parents, you are extremely blessed. I don’t take a minute with either of my parents for granted.
- If you think “it will be easier when _____” you will probably be disappointed. Honestly, the quicker you can learn to be content in your current season, the quicker you will be able to truly enjoy life.
- Grief is a unique experience for each person. Try not to compare yourself to someone else experiencing grief. I share my experience from time to time but I fully understand not everyone is in the same spot on their journey as I am.
- Never underestimate the impact you can make on someone in a short period of time. We only had 11 months with our son Kellen and people still tell me how much of an impact he made in their life.
- One of the best gifts you can give yourself and others around you is to NOT try to be great at EVERYTHING. Zero in on the things you value most and give those your all. Be ok with the things that don’t matter getting C- effort from you.
- You’re stronger than you think. The workout that seems too difficult, the strong willed teenager, the loss of a loved one. It might not feel like it now, but you will get through it.
- Wearing lipstick changes how you show up. As a teenager I wouldn’t be caught dead in lipstick. Lip jellies were all I wore. (shout out to my mom for funding my lancome lip jelly addiction) Now if I need a pick-me-up, or need to show up powerfully for myself, my family or my business, I pop on a bright shade of lipstick and instantly feel like I can handle whatever comes my way.
- Feeling confident with your finances positively impacts the other areas of your life. Have you ever had a stressful money experience and then immediately had to jump into parenting? You were probably distracted and maybe even snapped at your kids. Not because of something they did, but because of how you were reacting to the stress over money.
- Society wants us to default to the hard instead of the fun. Everywhere you look you see people talk about the hard, and it may be but it can also be fun. Being a toddler mom? Hard, sure, but also, so fun if you choose to see it that way. Building a business? One of the more challenging things you can do, but also allow yourself to have fun throughout the process. Losing weight, paying off debt, going back to school… you’ll see people complain about how hard it is, but it IS possible to choose to focus on the good instead.
- The best investment you can make is an investment in yourself. When you get better, it positively impacts everyone around you.
- You may be tempted to only surround yourself with people that agree with you on things, but what if you also hung out with people that offered a different perspective. Hang out with people that vote different than you, or that have different faiths and backgrounds.
- Fall is the best season. Full stop.
- The ability to make a decision is one of the best things you can have. If it’s a bad one, at least you’ll know and be able to course correct. But living in a constant state of indecision deprives you of so many great things on the other side of a decision.
- So many life lessons could be learned from watching Judge Judy. Seriously, whatever you do, don’t cosign a loan for anyone!
- No matter how you choose to educate your child, you will always be their best teacher. Let them watch you make buying decisions at the store, let them see you spend time on your own hobbies, let them hear you handle a difficult conversation.
- You learn more from losses than you do from wins. I’ve learned so much more from goals I missed than goals I achieved. Don’t be afraid of failing.
- Having little kids can be very challenging. It gets easier. Don’t get me wrong, there are always new challenges along the parenting journey but if you’re in the thick of raising little ones and wondering if it will ever get easier, it will. One day you’ll be able to eat a meal without holding a baby on your hip. You’ll be able to listen to your music in the car. You’ll be able to go pee without someone following you. It may not feel like it now, but it gets easier.
- Moms with money skills will change the world. Imagine if every mom was a level 10 confident with money. How different would our world be?
- Something may be true but not helpful. You may be busy, tired, tight on funds, etc. but is it helpful to focus on your circumstances? Or is it more helpful to focus on the solutions?
- Toddlers have the best fashion sense. Have you seen the confidence of a 3 year old in a princess dress, rain boots and a cowboy hat? You simply cannot convince me there’s anything better.
- There’s too many labels put on moms. If you search any mom accounts on instagram it leaves you thinking maybe you should be a pinterest mom, or a fashionable mom, or a homeschool mom, or a gardening mom…. the list goes on. I’m sure this thought has never crossed my husband’s mind.
- Mondays get a bad rap. They’re actually pretty great if you love what you do. If you don’t, what can you do to change that?
- Nutrition is wildly underestimated. I get it. I want the answer to be something other than eating more greens. But as a lover of great food I can tell you that my best days are usually the ones where my nutrition was on point.
- Fun doesn’t end when you get married or when you have kids. Let’s not participate in that narrative. Married people still have fun and your life isn’t over when you have kids.
- Black jelly beans are gross. I may not be willing to fight someone over this but I will have strong words with you.
- Seeing someone in their element is one of the best things in the world. Ever see an amazing teacher teach? A great dancer perform? An amazing mom momming?
- True Crime isn’t scary, unrealistic horror movies are terrifying. I’m not sure how the logic on this works but it just does.
- God is real.
- There is absolutely nothing like the sound of your babies belly laughing. I wish I could bottle it up and keep it forever.
- What you do occasionally doesn’t matter, what you do consistently does. Don’t stress about the missed workout, the day off of work, the D on one test. Focus on what you do most of the time instead.
- Your kids won’t remember the toys you gave them, but they will remember the time you spent with them. I know this sounds cliche but coming from a household that was heavy on the gifts I can tell you confidently I don’t remember even a small fraction of them, but I do remember how my mom took my sister and I out every weekend for coffee, bagels and conversation as teenagers. That time spent together is forever a favorite memory.
- Your life matters. You deserve to be here. There is a purpose and a calling on your life. Even if it doesn’t feel like it. Even if no one has told you lately. I know it for sure.
Honestly, reading this back I could re-title this “39 things I want my kids to know.” If you’ve read this far you are a gem. I hope you were reminded of something you needed to hear today. Thanks for celebrating with me!
What else would you add to the list?
Cheers to 39+ more amazing years!