30 Things I’ve Learned in 30 Years


1. Success is not about being the best at what you do; it’s about being the best you.
2. Televisions, computers, and smart phones are addictive and can remove you from the life you are supposed to be living. When you’re at the playground with your kids or on a date with your best friends, leave your phones behind.
3. The best friends you make as an adult can remain your best friends, even when life is too chaotic to call and physical distance is too great to visit. Nonetheless, it’s vital to reach out to each other as much as possible.
4. Read to your children. Read with your teenager. Share and discuss what you read with your friends.
5. Cook from scratch. Truth be told, food cooked at home tastes just as good as the restaurant versions, and it’s better for you.
6. Don’t allow yourself to take your stress out on the people you love the most.
7. If you’re in a crabby mood, do something new. Happiness is more easily achieved when you are doing something exciting and new.
8. Instead of complaining about your partner with your family and friends, vent directly to your partner, and let them give you feedback, too. You are the only two people able to do anything about your situation, anyway, and discussing your difficulties with others might make you even more frustrated than you originally were.
9. Fresh baked brownies with a bit of pizzazz mixed in (candy bars, peanut butter, marshmallows) are the perfect food for any occasion; they can even be eaten before breakfast.
10. Grades and test scores don’t really matter. If they did, I’d know and care about the academic backgrounds of my parents, husband, and friends… and I could care less!
11. Learn about and care about the entire world, and not just the world you see every day.
12. Science is real. Global warming is real. Deformed frogs are real. Do something about it.
13. Boy or girl, the child in your life is a developing soul. Don’t be discouraging by assigning him or her a gender role to play.
14. Beer is way better than wine. And it’s a terrible stereotype that women prefer mixed drinks.
15. A jetted tub should be every mom’s best friend.
16. Keep family your number one priority.
17. Rather than watching someone else change a poopy diaper, change it yourself. It’s much less disgusting.
18. Go on vacation in your own town, or in that cute little city down the road, even if it’s just for an afternoon. You’ll enjoy yourself and support your own community. What could be better?
19. Grover is the coolest children’s character ever. Hands down.
20. Your body is magnificent and is capable of making the impossible possible once your mind has decided to jump on board.
21. Prioritize joy. I promise that the work to-do list can wait.
22. You probably procrastinate because you are incredibly busy. Don’t feel badly when you find yourself scrambling in the last minute; instead, celebrate all of the other important things you got done, even if that list includes taking a bubble bath or drinking your coffee extra slowly.
23. Pumpkin beer, muffins, coffee, pie, cookies, and even seeds should are foods of the gods.
24. Your children are the perfect motivation to start working on bettering yourself, because they copy the best and worst parts of you.
25. Don’t waste your time judging yourself or judging others. No one really cares if your shoes match your belt or if your hair color complements your skin tone. And does it really matter when someone uses the “good” instead of “well” in a sentence? Let more important things, like generosity, passion, and humor, define your view of yourself and others.
26. Cloth diaper your children. (I know I am still struggling to do this 100%). But trust me. It’s no longer 1950. The technology is super cool, they’re relatively easy and not any grosser than disposable diapers. Plus, it saves money and the planet.
27. Visit museums and historical sites with your kids. Vacations shouldn’t be only about shopping and amusement parks. Show your children that learning is fun, and they will learn for life.
28. Take pictures. Write down memories. Review them often.
29. Most people won’t realize you need help until you ask. And from experience, people are excited to help you! Let them! And then spread the favors to someone else you think may need it.
30. For most people, criticism isn’t motivational. Instead, set a good example and give praise. They work SO much better.

3 comments on “30 Things I’ve Learned in 30 Years”

  1. Carrie, these are fantastic. I especially love the not caring about grades part, as well as the not assigning gender roles to play…but I love them all, really 🙂

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