Turning 30

How to Enter Your 30s Gracefully with Focus, Direction and A Clear Head.

Maldives

I didn’t have the sudden shock when it comes to turning 30. Instead, I was screaming my lungs out while jet skiing in Maldives. Well, like my best friend once said, “Age is just a number, but some dreams are meant to be chased at a certain age.”

I’ve always been a dream chaser; going against all odds, people who love me differently, the conventional ways of living, just to fulfill my heart’s desires. It is the only way I know how to live (with myself). At the end of the day, who are we living for? Who lives for us?

The toughest part about that is when what you choose to do for yourself hurts others, who might think they know what’s best for you / a situation. The gracious part though, is to return into the welcoming arms of those who learned to see life in the light you live and continued to love you unconditionally. Travel has taught me that only family can give such magic.

USA

{FINALLY MADE IT: USA coast-to-coast!}

Back from the Maldivian islands, to think that I have lived for 30 long years is pretty scary. Some only live up to 60, or shorter. So in a way, I could say that I’ve pretty much lived half my life. The freaky part comes in the form of questions – Have I achieved enough? Am I running out of time?

But then again, what is enough? Does time outrun us or do we outrun time?

While I always ensure that my birthdays are well celebrated, I also make sure that adding another number to my age is ‘worth it’ by refreshing my ‘dream board’ annually. I have this notebook with random cow print as its cover, which is actually a free gift from TOPSHOP. Because it was the least attractive notebook I had, I decided to name it ‘The Book of Scribbles’. Ugly on the outside but full of life-chart drawings to keep track with my adulthood.

life planning book

Alone, a manner it has to be, every November I reach out to the Book of Scribbles where the first page says “It’s NEVER too late (as long as you START).” I wrote that, knowing little back then that it would hold all the relevancy today.

I flip and read through my expired goals, naive aspirations and funny advises given to myself; each younger than the year before. The more relevant question then is, “Have I at least achieved what I have promised myself?”.

Good gracious the answer is always 70% – 80% yes!

To enter the 30s gracefully with focus, direction, and a clear head, I sectioned my life into sectors, which you’ll see in pastel colors below, then set different goals under each group. (If I have to step into the 30s club, I might as well dance in with my fancy new shoes!)

 

Thoughts to Cultivate 

Thinking creatively: It is easy to think and do things the way we always had. While there is nothing wrong with that, it is important to reflect and ask ourselves if our rituals can be done differently to improve daily life. The answer is usually yes, because there is always room for improvements. This is not about uncomfortable changes. This is about making life more interesting, colorful, and fun. i.e. A life hack!

baby blue pail

{As it takes a while for warm water to reach our shower, we fill a pail with the cold batch to water our plants after}

My take: Personally, this applies more for my blog – to step out and think out of the box, so that I can share better, quality content with you. For that to happen, I note that changes have to start from within and practiced at home.

 

To Renew

Beauty regime: One thing a beauty blogger know for sure is that a beauty regime used throughout a girl’s 20s, must in some ways be ‘upgraded’ when she graduates to her 30s. I made a weekly beauty calendar, which I stuck in my bathroom (and bedroom) and made sure I follow loyally.

30s beauty regime

{Sure enough, guests will find sticky notes around my house}

Friendships: It is sad but true that best friends are forever, but nothing is really for ever. Being a Scorpio, I always do my best to be a powerful ally to the people I call friends, for life. However, my late 20s had taught me to ‘let go’. Diverting my focus away from the wrong places opened up my eyes and made space to revive older friendships worth treasuring. While I can most likely win an Oscar for acting as an extrovert, like a Scorpion, I feel most at ease being an introvert inside my ‘shell’.

 

New Focuses

Be a better wife: Sitting quietly alone on the sofa one afternoon, I removed my engagement ring, stared at it for what it means, made a x20 fast rewind of my relationship with É from the start, played back, and asked myself if I had been a good wife. Have I? The answer turned out to be: I can be better. So I pondered on the things I am still doing as a girlfriend instead of a wife and came out with:

How to be A Better Wife:

- Remember that we are A TEAM.
- Pick up more RESPONSIBILITIES.
- Don’t stop doing the NICE THINGS I did as a girlfriend.
- PATIENCE is a virtue.
- Nagging is NOT COOL.
- Be COMPOSED, even when I get angry. (It happens.)
- DON’T ‘GIVE UP’ so easily.

 

kiss on the cheek

Then I put my ring back on and cooked a damn good meal for my husband with a smile on my face. Here is how I move forward from now on.

Save for the future: All I ever knew was saving to travel. I suppose it is time to save for my future family! Since I am jobless AF in a new country but also have my blog to juggle, please feel free to refer any freelance jobs in content producing / writing and social media management to yours cincerely.

 

Exciting Plans

Singapore

Making changes in thinking, renewing regimes and relationships, streamlining new focuses; make 30s sound way too serious, so here is the fun part I look forward to starting next year:

- Visiting a new museum once a month now that I’m in Cingapore.
- Going to garden concerts and everything jazz.
- The anticipation of finding out if I can travel to: Mongolia, Morocco, Russia, Greece, Netherlands and Dubai in the next 1 or 2 years. 

 

P.S. Single ladies, don’t waste time self-loathing, searching for love or ‘the right man’. Instead, try to see the world as much as you can! For when you are able to feel complete and content even just by yourself, the love you deserve will eventually find its way to you. This is the advise I would have given to my much, much younger self.

 

Recollecting leftover goals from the 20s

NYR

{Old resolutions}

I’ve accomplished many but also forgotten many. Resolutions like keeping fit, drinking 1.5 liters of water a day, calling grandma the 1st of every month and reading 6 books a year are amongst them. I guess I don’t have to tell you what I’m gonna do about them. You’ve read me to know well enough by now!

 

The Bigger Picture

Maldives

When these 3 words came to me, all that flooded my head was the wedding next year and the word ‘kids’.

The latter won’t be till 2018 (I seriously hope), though who am I kidding – how can kids not be in the big-ger picture, right?

This blog you are reading right now will then become all about parenting, pets and poo.

Just thought I’d prep you too but let’s not think about that now.

 

Though the text under each section above is personal, regardless what number you are celebrating, you too, can follow the same rundown and write in your own context to create an improved version of yourself. I hope by sharing this, it can inspire you too. x

 

 

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2 comments

  1. Happy birthday Cindy! You have grown so much since I first read your blog (which was YEARS ago!) So true about finding a job you love and think of the bigger picture x

  2. Hi Adeline! I know right; not sure myself what was I thinking back then. We have BOTH grown so much & definitely for the better, fitter, healthier & wiser. Thank you for still reading my blog after all this while! <3

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