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Cheers to 30 Years: How I’m Approaching My Thirties

On Turning 30

Turning 30 feels like one of life’s biggest milestones. Personally, this monumental birthday comes with a myriad of emotions. Part of me feels melancholy for having to kiss my twenties goodbye because it was such a successful and memorable decade. Another part of me feels relieved that the years I spent lost in my career, unsuccessful in love, and unsure about my life goals are long behind me. A whole other part of me altogether is stressed about things like sticking to a proper skincare routine, increasing my retirement contributions, exploring the idea of someday becoming a mother, and prioritizing my health and wellness overall.

In short, it feels like my thirtieth birthday is the beginning of a whole new chapter in life and one that requires me to lean into adulthood more than I ever have before.

Long gone are the acceptable excuses twenty-something me could once use in times of uncertainty or failure. At 30, it’s far less practical to say, “I’ll try this out and see how it goes” when starting a new job I’ll likely come to despise. At 30, it’s no longer cute to respond with “‘I don’t even have a pla.'” when someone asks me what my plans for the future are (thanks, FRIENDS). At 30, it’s less and less acceptable to have that “YOLO” mentality to excuse any and every juvenile, risky, or otherwise nonsensical experience that experimental twenty-something me might have once welcomed with open arms.

Basically, at 30, it’s time to get my @$$ into gear and fully embrace adulthood. Here’s how I plan to do just that!

How I’m Approaching My Thirties:

I’m forming a routine I can stick to.

It’s said that everything you want in life lies on the other side of consistency. With that in mind, I’m forming a routine for myself that inspires me, holds me accountable, and rewards me.

From setting aside 15 minutes before bed to prioritize my skincare regimen to carving out 30 minutes a few times a week to walk on my treadmill, I want to consistently stick to a routine that best serves my overall health and wellness in my thirties.

Allocating set days and times to reading, exercising, learning something new, relishing in my hobbies, and more will ensure I make time for all the things I want to do (and the things I have to do) to stay positive and healthy.

I’m putting my happiness above (just about) everything else.

At 30, I’ve learned the life lessons that money can’t buy you happiness and happiness must come from within. I’ve heard countless stories from older and wiser people around me who thought impressive bank accounts would boost their happiness and learned far too late in life that just wasn’t true.

Learning from their mistakes has inspired me to take joy in what’s happening right here, right now. I’ve adopted the mindset that if something (or someone) comes my way that doesn’t spark joy, then it’s (or they’re) not for me.

Of course, tasks like filing taxes, saving for retirement, and paying back student loans don’t exactly fuel my happiness, but other than the responsibilities we have to make time for, I’m putting my happiness first. I know I love to travel, explore, take on new adventures, write, read, and spend quality time with those I love. I refuse to lose sight of the things and people that spark joy for me.

I’m loving myself, regardless of my flaws, no matter what.

I spent far too much time in my adolescence and twenties lacking confidence in myself. Between the media, boys, and mean girls, it seemed like everyone had an opinion about my body, the way I dressed, and things I couldn’t control about myself. Young girls growing up in today’s age of Instagram influencers, YouTube makeup artists, and TikTok dancers have it harder than I did – but hey, it still wasn’t easy.

At 30, I’m done worrying about the size of my jeans or getting ready for bathing suit season. My goal is to be healthy and size has almost nothing to do with that. I’m done apologizing for my opinions, working hard to be liked, or hiding things like stretch marks. I love myself inside and out and that’s all that matters.

They say empowered women empower women and I plan to do just that. I’m here to lift people up without making myself feel small. There’s room for all of us in this world. #SelfLove

I’m learning to embrace the unknown.

For much of my life, I’ve been known as a “planner” and I mapped my future out for years to come. If the last two years of the COVID-19 pandemic have taught me anything, though, it’s that life throws curveballs at you and you have to adapt.

I learned this lesson the hard way after losing my job and planning a wedding in 2020. I had to pivot in my career and reimagine my “big day,” but overall, everything worked out, just a bit differently than I expected. The point is, life is unpredictable. At 30, I know this, believe it, and feel it in my bones.

There’s no “right way” to navigate through life. Rather, it all comes down to making the best choices we can with the information we have available to us at a given moment in time. All that to say, I’m embracing the unknown, trusting the journey, and living moment-to-moment as opposed to living for the end result. Building a life worth living is a state of mind, not a destination. In my thirties (and onward) I plan to enjoy what’s to come and remain open to adapting. That way, I won’t be disappointed!

Cheers to 30 Years!

Overall, turning 30 felt like this massive event I needed to mentally, emotionally, and physically prepare for but now that’s it’s here, I’m so excited for all that’s to come.

It’s said that your thirties are destined to include some of the best years of your life. I have faith that statement will ring true for me! At 30, I know who I am, where I’m headed in my career, who my tribe is, and what I want out of life. I aim to prioritize my health, wellness, and happiness all the while growing my career, my passions, and my family. I look forward to someday embarking on the wild journey of parenthood with my amazing husband who is bound to become the greatest father. I’m stoked to add more travels to my growing list of 18+ countries I’ve visited so far and welcome all the adventures still to come.

Age may just be a number, but I am hopeful my thirties will be my best years yet!

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About the Author

Rachael is a University of Southern Maine graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a minor in Sociology. She remotely works full-time as a Senior Content Marketing Specialist for Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. In her leisure time, Rachael enjoys traveling with her husband, finding the next Netflix series to binge, and taking too many photos of her dogs Jax and Kai. Rachael is obsessed with chapstick, favors the Oxford comma, and is a proud Mainer. You'll likely find her exploring New England + beyond.



Saturday 17th of December 2022

Hi I'm Ruby & about to be 30 in 7 dayssss... loved reading your blog post. it made me feel calm and excited... I have some goals to wrap up before 30 and then still a lil to do list like order a cute dress for the big night! Things will fall into place, I just know it!


Tuesday 8th of February 2022

Love this Rachael! I’m excited to see where the future takes you! You are an incredible woman and I know your thirties are going to be amazing! 🎉🥰

Kelsie Hayes

Tuesday 8th of February 2022

Ahhh this is so well written and embodies so much of my goals and fears and desires for when I turn 30 next year. So lucky to know you as you blaze this trail and take on the next decade! You’re a rockstar filled with fireworks and light! Can’t wait to see what the upcoming years bring!