I recently hit a milestone in my life, I turned 30 years old. Darcie suggested that this would be a good time to reflect and, perhaps, write an article.
Being that my 30th birthday would also be my golden birthday, I’ve been looking forward to it for a long time – my whole life, really. There’s something to say about being fully recognized as an adult once you reach your thirties.
For those who know me, they would not be surprised by my saying I was lost for the majority of my 20s. I struggled with many inner demons and have been on a path of self-discovery ever since.
Although I’ve always had ambitions, I wasn’t raised in a particularly ambitious environment. My parents both endured health issues when I was young and finances were always a struggle. Add to that a Southern Baptist upbringing and you get a narrative that success and money lead to greed, which is a sin, so therefore it’s better in the eyes of God to be broke and struggling.
I didn’t realize I had adopted this understanding of money until I read the book Secrets of the Millionaire Mind* about a year into living in California. Up until then I spent my entire life around people with similar leanings toward money – there’s never enough, it’s hard to come by, and even harder to hold onto.
When I read that book I was already waist deep in podcasts, such as The Tim Ferriss Show and The Art of Charm (though only when Jordan Harbinger was the host, that is), and was finding truth in the content they were putting out. So when I was exposed to the concept that my thoughts and beliefs about success and money weren’t my own, they were taught to me by my parents, upbringing, and experiences, I began questioning everything I knew to be true.
Though I continue to struggle to reconcile with the idea of wealth and success and being a decent person, I’m learning more everyday that life is fluid and I get out what I put out into it. You can call it karma, the Law of Attraction, or God’s revealing his plan.
As I step into my 30s, here’s what I know:
- Alexander conquered the known world by his death at 32.
- Julius Caesar laid the foundation during his 30s for his rise to become the Emperor of Rome.
- Siddhartha Gautama achieved enlightenment and became the Buddha at 35.
- Jesus of Nazareth had taught for three years at the time of his crucifixion at age 33.
- Bill Gates took Microsoft public at 31 years old and a year later became a billionaire.
History is filled with men in their 30s achieving great things. I can look on from the standpoint that these men had achieved far more at my age than I have, or, I can choose to see them as evidence that your 30s is when you really start to make big things happen. I choose the latter.
While you could say people of all ages do incredible things everyday, the success certainly hockey sticks upward around 30 years old. I take comfort in this.
As Darcie and I begin our life together, I am reassured that my life really is just beginning, and I feel ready and able to take my future into my own hands.
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