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The Ultimate Bucket List For Your 30s

If your twenties are for figuring out WHO you are, your 30s are for your health, wellness, and peace of mind. Here’s my take on the ultimate bucket list for your 30s. These are all things I’ll be aiming to do in this next decade. I hope to deepen the connection with myself and with the world around me.

The Ultimate Bucket List For Your 30s

1. Max out your contributions to your retirement fund.

Supposedly, the average 40 year old should have $189,537 in retirement savings. If you haven’t already started a retirement fund, the time is now!

And make sure you’re maxing it out – especially if your company matches your contribution.

2. Invest in property.

I’ll be the first to say that property isn’t for everyone. Having bought my first house in my 30s, I can say that I think renting is way easier. Even with that said, it’s been a great learning experience to have a property of our own.

3. Open investment accounts.

Can you sense a little bit of a theme here? I’m a huge advocate for taking the reins of your finances and being proactive about them. I created an entire guide for investing beginners. It’s not nearly as scary as you think and worth it as your money grows over time.

4. KonMari your life.

Because you don’t want to carry clutter. And you don’t want to have to clean up 20+ years of stuff if you decide to move!

A cluttered life can be a stressful life. Why not remove anything you’re not using anymore? It’s okay to let things go. We don’t need to hang on to say many things for the chance of “what if.”

The things in our lives we’re no longer using can be given new homes with people who will make the most use out of them.

5. Build a staple wardrobe.

Also known as a capsule wardrobe… curate your clothes so that you’re excited to get dressed every morning, and never have the “I have so many clothes and nothing to wear” feeling!

What’s in your closet should reflect what you wear most often. And just because you like a shirt in one color doesn’t mean you need it in every color they make it in! That’s a reminder I need sometimes. If you wear a white shirt most often, buy a few of the shirts you love in white. That makes sense, right?

6. Pay off debt.

I do think you should pay off as much debt as possible in your 20s, alongside with saving. Mostly because it can set you up to be in a better place financially in your 30s. Your debt won’t hold you back and will give you the financial independence you need to make decisions beyond money.

7. Have a GOOD skincare routine.

And good doesn’t have to mean complicated! There are a ton of skincare products out there making a lot of promises. In my experience, a good cleanser, serum, moisturizer, and SPF make all the difference. If you do struggle with more skin issues (I struggle with dark spots from breakouts), see a dermatologist and figure out what’s best for you!

8. Build a workout routine.

In order to keep up with my growing son, I want to be healthy and strong. I’ve learned ways to incorporate working out that fit my schedule, and I make myself a priority by making my workouts a priority.

9. Speak up for yourself.

We all need to learn to speak up for ourselves — especially as women. It’s crucial to to know your worth and be able to advocate for it.

Many times we are not only speaking for ourselves but for people who will follow in our footsteps. Speak up in the face of injustices. Share your opinion. Advocate for more money.

10. Set boundaries.

This is one of the most important things we can learn to do for ourselves in life. Setting boundaries is how you show up for yourself and how you show others how to treat you.

I share more about how I set boundaries and enforce them in this podcast episode.

11. Travel more to places you want to go!

Whether you take a little trip or a big trip, traveling is a great way to expand your horizon, learn something new about yourself, and just have an adventure.

12. Do something you’ve dreamed of as a kid.

Skydiving? Adopting a dog? Exploring France? Celebrate your inner child and fulfill a dream of yours!

One of my dreams is to hike to base camp Mount Everest and see it in person. With young children, I know realistically I might not do this in my 30s, but it is on my radar for later in life.

13. Mentor someone.

We’re at the point in our lives and our careers where we can still remember what it was like to be 22 and just starting out, but have enough experience to be able to offer valuable advice.

Mentoring is a gift of time and knowledge to someone, and also a gift to yourself, because helping others helps you continue to grow.

14. Learn something new.

I believe we should all endeavor to be life-long-learners, so just because you leave high school or college does not mean you should stop learning. It’s important to challenge our brains and it’s good for our emotions to practice being bad at things, and getting better at them. 

15. Host dinner parties.

Gone are the days that I want to go to a big party or a bar (let’s be honest…I didn’t really love that when I was younger, either) but I love spending time with my friends in a more causal, personal setting.

Dinner parties are great for that, because 1) you have delicious food 2) it’s at your house or theirs, so the atmosphere is comfy, and 3) instead of screaming to be heard over loud music, you get to have quieter, more thoughtful conversations that allow for you to deepen your friendships and connections.

16. Deepen friendships.

As we grow into our lives, build our own families, and get started with more routines, it’s harder and harder to keep in touch. We’re all going through life at a different pace, but that doesn’t mean we can let go of the ties of friendship.

Deeper friendship doesn’t meant talking every day, it means building trust and love that you can count on, so that you know which friend would come in a heartbeat, which friend you need to check in on because they carry their sadness quietly, or which friend you know you won’t see or talk to for a year but then pick right back up with.

17. Go on a solo trip.

It’s important to get to know yourself at every age, and solo trips are a great way to do that.

You can take a short trip to another town or a big trip out of state or out of the country. Either way, traveling by yourself reaffirms your independence and gives you the space to be with your thoughts and with yourself.

18. Break a bad habit.

Skipping breakfast, leaving your laundry next to the hamper, drinking coffee until we twitch… bad habits won’t  serve us and the longer you do them the harder it is to change. The time to kick a bad habit was last year, or RIGHT NOW. Choose one thing you do that you wish you didn’t, and focus on stopping it for a full month. You’ll thank yourself, I swear! 

19. Take on a leadership role.

Choosing to be a leader in any aspect of your life is a big deal, and will help you level up as an adult. We all have responsibilities that we accumulate, but the responsibility to be a leader, a good leader, is an amazing way to grow and challenge yourself.

20. Give back to your community.

It can be hard to find your community once you leave home or leave college, but community is so important. It may take a while to find yours, but once you do, you need to foster the relationships and continue to show up for your community. Giving back to your community is another way of actively investing in your family and your future.

21. Expand your family.

Not everyone wants to be a parent or is able to have a child, but family isn’t just about that.

Whether your family includes a child or children, pets, or even plants, learning to take care of and taking care of another being outside of yourself is one more way to grow and learn as a human as well as another way to expand your happiness in life.

22. Have your living space be your home.

Gone are the days that we decorate with posters stuck on walls with sticky tack and keep our stuff in piles. You don’t have to own a home to make your living space a safe, comfortable zone for you to rest and recharge.

Take the time to decorate and fill your apartment, your house, your room, with pieces that function as helpful, happy, reminders of who you are and what you love.

23. Improve your credit score.

A good credit score is the a valuable thing to have, especially in a time of crisis. If your twenties left your credit off to a rocky start, you can fix it, but do it now. 

24. Build a mindfulness practice.

We’ve all heard about burnout, about stress, and about how much more anxiety and depression there is than ever before. Practicing mindfulness is a really helpful tool to keep grounded, to manage anxiety, and to keep a clear head. 

25. Set reading goals and reach them.

If you don’t love to read, don’t tell yourself you need to read 100 books. If you love to read but have little time, don’t tell yourself you need to read 100 books. Reading is one of the things that helps us learn, that entertains us, that feeds our soul, without using a screen. Make a goal to read a book a month, or a book every three months, and stick to it.

26. Learn about history (again).

It’s amazing how our brains hold onto some information and release others. It’s also amazing how history seems to change right in front of our eyes. Whether you’re a history buff or not, chances are what you learned about our history when you were in high school is remembered or portrayed vastly differently, and it’s worth going back and revisiting what we learned of our past with our newer, adult perspectives.

27. Train for something physically and mentally challenging.

At any age, it’s important to set goals and reach them, and to challenge ourselves.

We don’t all need to run marathons or even 5k, though. It’s great if you do! But it’s also great if you want to challenge yourself to walk around your neighborhood for 30 minutes a day. It’s just important to keep moving, and show ourselves that we can improve but it takes showing up to do so.

28. Spend time in nature.

With all of the screens, internet, social media, and content we have available to us, getting back in touch with nature is a great way to power down and recharge.

Have you heard of 1000 Hours Outside? It’s about reclaiming childhood and spending more time outside. But you don’t need to be a kid or have one to follow the concept!

29. Do 30 acts of kindness.

Big or small, our actions can make a lasting positive impact.

30. Make the kind of memories you’ll cherish forever.

Because we still have a lot of life left ahead to live, and to carry our memories into. We won’t always remember every detail of our childhood or youth, but the best memories are the ones we get to live over and over again.

And there we have it! 30 Things To Do In Your 30s. What is on your 30-something bucket list? I’d love to know!

About the Author

Nicole Booz is the founder of GenTwenty and GenThirty. She is an entrepreneur, author of The Kidult Handbook, and most importantly, Mama to two beautiful little boys. She loves reading, organizing her home, and living a simple, less toxic lifestyle. You've seen her in The New York Times, TIME, Insider, Inside Edition, New York Post, NextAdvisor, Forbes, Yahoo, HuffPost, and U.S. News & World Report.


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