30 Things to Do Before Turn 30
The inevitable resolution-check and the self-realisation that you have nothing to do with that 20-something dude.
Today marks my 30th year in life. Today I turn into the “big” 3-oooh…
I always thought of myself as someone who doesn’t stress about getting older. I mean it is only natural and, to be frank, I very much look forward to it. I am a strong supporter of the notion that everything should be accomplished at the right time. You tend to enjoy things in life better when you do them the right time. Whether you club and party like a rockstar, or enjoy a little stroll in the park on a Friday afternoon, there is always a time and place for either.
So is growing older. At the end of the day you prepare yourself all the previous years to enjoy different things in life which come at later stages.
I never really stressed about turning 30. That was until a couple of months ago. It is inevitable not to look back and tick boxes of what you’ve accomplished so far. Both personally and professionally. Come to think of it, the whole thing is pointless. But society has made us think 30 is one of our life’s checkpoints, like 18, 21(if you are an American) and 50. I know, I sound romantic, but I believe that everyone, even slightly, run a background check right before each of these checkpoints.
And to make things a bit more cheesy, I pulled out a list I created of 30 things I wanted to accomplish before I turn 30. Only, this list was done when I was 20…
Really??? Who is this guy? What was I thinking? I can hardly recognise 20ish Nikos. And to think I believed myself to be mature enough back then…
I mean, seriously… What was I thinking back then? The list consists of some weird party-focused, money-centric accomplishments and status quo that seem irrelevant to how my life progressed. Some will say its called evolution and growing up. Correct, but there should be something in this list that at least reflects me, my current personality. Something that actually makes sense…
Thank Lord, there it was! I was starting getting depressed. “Do something extreme/dangerous but yet funny (bungee-jumping, paragliding…). That’s it, I’ll do paragliding! Its not something that stands out, but it’s something that at least still reflects my personality, faces my fears and puts me outside of my comfort zone. And I am pleased to see that young me still shares a common urge with present me. The urge to try something new.
However, this process made me reconsider a number of standards I had for life. They say that people never change. Wrong. People do change.
Growing older means you perceive life-situations differently, your goals change and therefore your personality does the same. You find that people you grew up with end up growing apart, leaving you with a few that you share stronger values with. The goals you set when you’re 20-something are miles away from those you set at 30. And it makes sense. Everyone on their twenties are dreamers. We make plans to conquer the world. We don’t know how, but we know that by 30 we will be there. On one side, we have to thank society that feeds us with values of the likes of Jordan Belfort, Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg. On the other, we have to thank our families that brought us up being “The Chosen Ones”.
Entering my thirties I realise that I never really wanted to do some of the things I listed back then. I don’t believe I’m “old” as I thought I would be back then. I don’t still look for the app idea that will make me the next Jan Koum and Brian Acton so I can spend the rest of my life in a yacht, neither I believe the dude from the movie “21" is living the dream. And I certainly don’t believe material goods will make me happy.
On the contrary, I now believe that a well structured career path will do me more good than just sitting on my arse doing nothing. I also realised that I can be creative and I hate long periods of inactivity. And finally, I strongly believe that family values is the greatest investment you do for your life. — It’s called “growing up”.
Nevertheless, I am happy I am growing old. I now at least have a more resonate perception of what truly matters in life. I still have dreams and I will never stop dreaming big, but now I at least have a plan that ties-in stronger values than just becoming “The Chosen One”. And by the way, I still feel immature, young and adventurous enough to go and tick-off that box from the list I made 10 years ago, and create new ones for the next 10.
4th of September 2014 - Made 30 years ago.