There seem to be two competing stereotypes for women in their 30s and women who are approaching their 30s. One stereotype, deriving from a place of misogyny, is that you should be married or pursuing marriage. The second is that the 30s are a magical time in your life where all the hard work you’ve put into your career, and relationships has finally paid off. Both of those beliefs add a ton of unnecessary pressure on women.
If you feel like you’re failing in life because you haven’t lived up to this standard, you are not alone. The good news is there is another option for women who are in or about to be in this new phase of life. Here is how to BAUCE up if you’re approaching your 30s or have already made it 30+ times around the sun.
How to BAUCE up if you’re nearing your 30s
If you’re between the ages of 27-29, you are probably having some incessant thoughts about your age. You may be evaluating your life based on the people around you and societal expectations. Worried about the milestones such as marriage, kids, and job promotions that are deemed the most important aspects of life. For some reason even though you’ve only lived about a 1/3 of your life, it feels as if the more you approach 30, the sooner your life ends. Take off some of that pressure with these three steps.
Decide who you want to be in your 30s
It’s very common to think about all the things you want to achieve by the time you are 30. But, not every dream can be achieved on your preferred timeline. Instead, focus on the attributes you want to embody when you are 30. Do you want to be more confident? More independent? More outgoing? More focused? When you shift your lens to who you want to be, instead of who society expects you to be, you can age with ease and joy.
Start prioritizing your health
There is no denying that the body changes with age. This is natural, and it means that running on 4 hours of sleep and energy drinks like you did in your early 20s, is not going to cut it. To live a vibrant and wholesome life in your 30s start practising better health habits now. Getting eight hours of sleep, eating more fibre, and staying hydrated will help you to thrive in your 30s. Your body will thank you later.
Create financial plans and goals
In your early 20s, money seems like something you earn and spend. But the more you work, the more you start to see that working a 9 to 5 isn’t something you want to do for the rest of your life. To prevent hustling for the rest of your life, start thinking about your long-term financial plans. This could be saving more, investing, and managing your money better so that you’re not living paycheck to paycheck.
Fun fact: Lupita Nyong’o won her first Academy Award when she was 31 years old.
How to BAUCE up if you’re in your 30s
If you’re currently in your 30s and you don’t have everything figured out, it’s ok. Proof of this is Megan Markle, who was 36 when she married Prince Harry. This shows that there is still a chance for love, and making your dreams come true in your 30s. Here’s how to BAUCE up in your 30s:
Embrace and accept where you are in your 30s
Beyoncé told Harper’s Bazaar the year she turned 30. “I’m transitioning as a woman, and I’m finally able to express myself as I am.” Honour the fact that you made it to your 30s. No matter if you’re working at your dream job, or have a family with three kids. Celebrate the fact that you’ve made it this far. Remember there is always someone out there who wishes they could have a fraction of the life you have.
Understand that you’re the designer of your life
Whether you are happy with your life or not, is in your control. Yes, circumstances happen. Yes, opportunities don’t always lead you to where you wanted to be. But with every choice you make, you are designing your life. You can choose to design a life of misery or you can choose to live a life on your terms.
Continue to pursue joy, happiness, and your definition of success
Life does not end when you 30. You still have your whole life ahead of you. Make sure that pursuing joy is a daily practice. Be mindful of where you are putting your energy and make sure those things make you happy.
If you’re still feeling nervous about your 30s, here are some inspiring quotes from women who figured things out later in life
“I picked up the camera pretty late for someone becoming a director. Usually, people are going to film school and they’re picking up their first camera either in high school or in college years. I was just starting to learn about it at 32 years old. I think the conversation is about change. Can you change your mind about who you are and what you want to do later in the game?”- Ava DuVernay
In the book beloved, Toni Morrison wrote: “Definitions belong to the definers, not the defined.” You define what your age means to you.