“When I grow up, I’ll know it all…” Sure you will, kid. I am well into my thirties and I’m still learning every day. Beyond scraped knees, broken hearts and making sure you don’t leave your drink unattended at the bar, your thirties provide a host of brand new lessons. Here are 30 invaluable lessons I’ve learned in my 30s…so far.

  1. Dating was hard. I am grateful…like from the pit of my stomach GRATEFUL…that those days are behind me. Sure the gauntlet of frogs I’ve kissed led me to my prince, but I could have gone without the filthy apartments and two-timers along the way. If you’re still on the journey to your ONE, hang in there, they’re coming! 
  2. Being a kid ruled. Sometimes I zone out watching my kid play with trains with one sock on and a fistful of Goldfish. What a life.
  3. You’ll never fit in those jeans you’ve been saving since High School again. The jeans are made to FIT YOU, not the other way around. Let those hip-huggers go, girl.
  4. Diets don’t work. Lifestyle changes do. Take care of yourself from the inside-out without the chokehold of Diet Culture holding you back.
  5. You’ll listen to the same music. You finally hit the age where you can’t identify the hottest new artists on Top 40 radio. Fire up your college playlist, queen!
  6. Your siblings are your best friends. Cherish the memories made growing up and make some new ones!
  7. You don’t have to be doing what you “thought” you’d be doing. Life is full of detours, dead ends and full-stops. Don’t let that stop you from chasing your dreams (plural!)
  8. Gray hairs are aggressive. Once you pop you can’t stop…literally. Thank heavens for hairdressers.
  9. Sending holiday cards is a part time job. Conceptualizing, styling, coordinating, capturing, choosing the PERFECT design, managing addresses, licking, stamping…oh my!
  10. Where to store potatoes. A temperature of around 38°F or 3°C is the ideal.
  11. Quality over quantity. Sweaters, friends…all of it.
  12. To care less what others think. In your thirties you really start to shake out your own lane. If others don’t fit, keep cruising and do you, baby!
  13. Believe red flags. If someone shows you their true colors, believe them the first time!
  14. Hard work pays off. In the gym, in the office and in your bank account…keep it up!
  15. There is no timeline. Not married by 30? Honey, 50 is the new black. You got this.
  16. Houses -No longer cost $50 and a fresh baked pie…you’ll get that home sweet home eventually. Plus, renting rules.
  17. You’ll outgrow people. People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime…
  18. Home doesn’t have to be just one place.
  19. There’s room for more than one goal. You CAN do it all.
  20. What goes in comes out. Good vibes, good people, good music, good food, good LIFE!
  21. Boundaries are LIFEEE!
  22. Instagram isn’t real. It’s a highlight REEL.
  23. Comparison is the thief of joy. See above. 
  24. Just because someone has a title doesn’t mean they’re entitled to you, your life, your kids. Protect your peace!
  25. You’ll never be the old you. The past was cute and all but it’s time to evolve, baby girl. You are the remix.
  26. You’ll find someone. I promise.
  27. Friendship can survive the distance.
  28. Don’t take videos at concerts. You’ll never watch them again and you’re in everyone’s way. Your thirties are for living in the moment!
  29. If people care they will make time. The right ones will fit you in their busy schedules. Everyone has something going on, but your people will see you as an enhancement to their lives, not a burden.

30. A Credit card isn’t a gift card. Cut it up!

Ali is a lover of boybands, cheese, and a good leather jacket (not always in that order). Born and raised on the Jersey Shore, she left her career as a radio personality to move to Texas with the love of her life, Ed. Since moving to Austin, she became a wife, mama to two sweet little boys, and author of "B is for Boy Bands." She loves salsa dancing, nail salons that serve champagne, and has an Mmmbop tattoo. You can check out her book on Instagram @bisforboybands


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