Wisdom of the Internet: Post-30s

Someone asked a question on AskReddit about the things that you get to look forward to after you turn 30 and this dude's answer struck a chord.

Dude - buckle up because being over 30 is awesome. I was dreading it in the weeks running up to my 30th birthday. I thought it was going to be all backpain and recliners from then on out. I was wrong. My 30th birthday was my favorite ever. Here's why:

  1. I came to the realization that I'm never going to be 'cool' in the way MTV told me I should be (or whatever the equivalent is for kids now. Shut up. Stop laughing) so I could stop trying so damn hard to look the way that TV wanted me to look and acting the way TV wanted me to act. I really got comfortable being myself. If you can do this before you're 30, do it. So Point #1 - You get comfortable in your own skin.

  2. I got into a real relationship. Granted, this happened before I turned 30. My wife (then girlfriend) and I got together when I was 25. Before that my relationships with women were pretty superficial. With my wife (then girlfriend) the relationship didn't start all that different, but I learned how to let this woman become my friend, then my best friend, and now super-best-friend-lifelong-partner. It's been almost 8 years now, and there's nobody I trust or confide in or want to be around more. I still have plenty of friends, and we still hang out, but it's not nearly as important to me as it was when I was in my 20's. So Point #2 - You learn how to have real, meaningful relationships.

  3. I don't live hand-to-mouth any more. Being married, and both of us with good-paying middle-class jobs and no kids, we do pretty good. We have a house on 10 acres (and a mortgage) and a couple vehicles (with a small loan) and a retirement plan that grows fatter with each paycheck. We're both in grad school (one night a week), but we're able to make ends meet with a little left over at the end of the month. We're certainly not living high on the hog right now, but once school ends we're going to be doing pretty good. I don't worry where my next meal is going to come from. I don't worry about making rent. I don't worry about what I'll do if my car breaks down. So Point #3 - You get security.

  4. Provided you don't dress like an idiot, people will listen to what you have to say. I'm still a little surprised that I can walk into a business meeting and say words with my deep man-voice and people will stop and listen to what input I have. This comes after years of being the 'kid' working on construction jobs where I was the guy who had to sweep and cut all the boards to the right size and stuff. You hit 30-ish, and people start taking you seriously (unless you're dressed like an idiot. I'm looking at you Affliction-shirt-at-work guy.). So Point #4 - You get respect.

Now, to any of you under-30-year-olds reading this, you may think to yourself "That sounds damn boring." And you may be right. Because right now your life is hanging out with friends and probably having some awkward drunken sex with available partners and going to concerts and having fun. It's a trade. And it's a trade I would have made at age 19 if I knew how good it feels. Because another thing you learn once you're over 30 is the difference between fleeting fun and long-term satisfaction. You may disagree with me now ( 22-year-old me would have, from the outside looking in), but you'll get there. And you'll find out that it's exactly as great (or better) than I just described. Good luck with the rest of your 20's!

 

Thanksgiving: The Things I Am Thankful For, 2014 Edition

I know, I know, Thanksgiving is an American thing and we don't really celebrate it here, except that I am. And also, I think it's a wonderful concept, to remember to be thankful for the things we have at least once a year, if not every year.

Things I Am Thankful For 2014 (and in general) - not in any particular order.

  1. A job that I really have fun doing. Anyone who knows me knows that I have been through many different jobs and various fields but nothing really stuck. Until now, this is the first job (other than my brief stint at the now-defunt Borders Books) that I look forward to going to work at. It is truly quite amazing to feel like my ideas and opinions matter. I am just very excited to go to work each day (okay maybe not on Mondays) because whatever I do has a direct impact and it's awesome. The team is amazing and we are like a family. Going to work THEN school is a breeze because of how understanding my boss is about my educational priorities. I am so very thankful for that.
  2. Food, shelter, water. This is the usual thing and very clichéd I know but we need to remember that not everyone in the world has access to these things. I was watching a documentary about the clean water initiative in Africa and after which, I was in the shower and just marvelled at the fact that I was using litres of clean water to rinse my hair TWICE while some kid in the the other side of the world has to make do with the same volume of water for an entire week.
  3. Friends. Three years ago I would have never thought that I would have such a supportive network of friends I could rely on for the best laughs and advice. I don't see them as much as I would love to but I do like to make time for the few I count my favourite friends. :D Thank you for hanging out, everyone.
  4. Family. I know that very often, family is a sore spot for me, but I am not going to allow one person to ruin the whole term for me. I am very glad to be in regular contact with my brother and helping him with his life decisions. I am also very thankful for my grandmother and uncle, whom I stay with, they provide a very safe and calm environment for me to thrive in and I am very very very thankful for that. 
  5. The Internet & Technology. The internet has brought me the job I now love. The Internet has brought me friends I would other have never met. The internet allows me to share my thoughts, both important and lame puns, with the world. The Internet allows me access to 95% of the music I listen to on Spotify, 80% of the TV shows I follow on Netflix and Hulu Plus. My iPhone 6 takes the most amazing photos (any lack in the photos I post is a result of my inexperience and nonexistent eye for pretty things).

And now I am on my way to get some breakfast before picking up some pies for Thanksgiving at my bosses' place later tonight. I hope you will find it in your heart to think about the things you are thankful for, not just once a year but as often as you can. There are many things to be unhappy about if we so choose, but what is the fun in that?

a great weekend. :)

This has been a very restful weekend. Playing Pokemon, catching up with some of my favourite TV shows. Scorpion seems like a nice premise for a show, it'll be interesting to see how the network runs with it. It has got antisocial geniuses and the normal people who love them, hacking (granted, Hollywood hacking) and Homeland Security.

After the madness of the past two months for the exams, this has been something I really needed.

I caught myself thinking, just the other day, if I could live like this, I could. Hot mug of tea in my hands, grandmother's cooking in the kitchen, great music streaming on Spotify, on my bed with a mountain of blankets and the rain pouring outside. 

I remember applying for a job at Buffer a couple years ago and though I didn't get the job, their company message stayed with me. One of the points on the slide was to choose happiness no matter what. It has been very helpful for me to remember that happiness is a choice. 

我好累。我不知道这无名的疲惫是不是即将结束的考试季节说带来的后遗症。

变质的友谊单方面的维持也很累。四年前我决定结束随时踩到地雷的生活,想不到会又碰到。

单方面的讨好好累,处处提防自己的言行举止也好累。明明没做错什么却感到愧疚也好累。一个和谐的圈子里出现了一个蛮不讲理的人让我好累。

Perhaps you could call these the years in which I have finally figured my shit out and where I want to go. All my life I've been searching for a period of time where I can just relax and not have anything to worry about but we both know that it isn't going to happen. No matter how well adjusted you like to say you are, there will be nagging thought at the back of your mind, waiting for the moment before wakefulness and slumber to pounce, leaving you tired but insomniac.

I guess the most important thing I've learnt over the past year is that how you handle it when things don't go your way matters more than whether or not everything does. And let's face it, no one gets their way all the time.

We have to make the best of what we have. 

PLANS: Solo Birthday Trip in April

I know it's ambitious. I have not had the resources to be a well-travelled person nor have I ever travelled alone. I can't stop thinking about it though. I have always thought that with my current resources going out of the country is impossible for me, but when I actually sat down to work out the numbers, it seems like it is actually a real possibility.

Nobody knows what would happen to me tomorrow and I really don't want to leave with any regrets.