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30 Things You Must Do Before You Turn 30

If you are about to wind up your 20s and all set to hit the 30s, then here's a checklist of things for you to tick off.

Our lives keep changing immensely as we grow old and there are a lot of things that we miss out due to lack of planning. We often become reluctant to prioritize things. While we survive our 20s in shaping our career and figuring out what exactly we want to be, the post 30 phase seems to be more difficult as one has to grow more responsible and take life a little more seriously.

1. Try to know more about your family history.

You have always been busy with yourself till now, but now it’s time to turn back and dig into the past. Know about your family history – ask your parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles. You might just learn about things that you never knew, about the places where your great-grandparents had lived, where your grandparents grew up, whether you have links with people in a different country – it’ll be an interesting journey if you choose to travel to all those places where your folks have once lived and spend a considerable period of their life. Knowing your family history is important for you – otherwise how will you pass it on the next gen?

2. Take a solo trip.

In case you’ve always postponed this – then you must surely go for that much-awaited trip now! Post-30s, life changes manifold and you might never again get a chance to hitchhike with strangers and stay with the locals in their homes, drink the local alcohol and celebrate their festivals. Traveling by yourself will definitely push you to get out of your comfort zone, help you discover who you really are and have experiences that you probably wouldn’t have had if you traveled with someone else. It will also give you valuable thinking time, to discover your passion and to walk down the unknown trails with strangers.

3. Live in a different city, at least once.

It might sound like a difficult deal – but at least once, you should think of moving out and staying in a different city, all by yourself. You can either take up a job in a different city or pursue some course, or just take a break and indulge in doing things you like. You can take up some art lessons or join a music class, go for meetups and workshops. But above all, you’ll learn to make a life of your own. Starting from the morning tea to the dinner – you’ll have to think and plan for everything, which in itself is a task that you need to manage in the most efficient manner. Rest assured, this will make you a more organized and confident person.

4. Start saving.

It might seem too early to make retirement plans – but there’s no harm in saving early, right? Even if it just $50 a month, doesn’t matter – save that much. Every single penny counts. You don’t know what future has in store for you, hence it is always good to be on the safer side and to have enough money in your bank account, so that, if one fine day there’s a problem, you’ll have enough funds to support yourself. Also, no matter how small it might look now, by the time you’ll hit your 60s, this will turn into a huge amount.

5. Take the risk and try the adventure sport you’ve always thought to avoid.

Shed your fears and feel the adrenaline rush. Whether it is bungee jumping, diving with the sharks or skydiving – go for it! Get outside, take the leap, put yourself in the hands of those trained professionals, and experience that exhilarating feeling of being so close to staring death in the face. Life will seem to be much prettier post this experience and you’ll have amazing stories to share with your kids – about your fears and how you overcame them!

6. Get rid of your bad habits.

Yes, I’m serious – before you hit the 30s, it’s important to let go of the bad habits. Whether it’s a poor sleep cycle that you’ve acquired over the years, or it’s your excessive smoking tendency – try to bring some good changes in life by stepping into a healthier way of living. For some people, lying even when it isn’t necessary is a bad habit, while few people just want to poke their nose in other’s business! In case you too have a bad habit and you don’t quit those now, the struggle might get more difficult in the days ahead.

7. Get involved in a fitness regime.

People who are fit in their later life, are usually the ones who made wiser choices during their teens and twenties! No one’s asking you to hit the gym for sure, but you can do little things on your own. Cut down those extra calories that you’ve been consuming, stop eating out much and try to restrict yourself to a healthier diet on most of the days (occasional indulgence is fine!), go for a run every day without finding excuses and exercise regularly. Doing yoga will also help you in several ways. All these will not only help you in shedding some kilos now but also help you to look younger in the days ahead.

8. Learn a foreign language.

Imagine how fancy it would be if you can speak French or Spanish fluently! Learning a new language is always a good thing, and it’ll surely make you a more charming person. Knowing a different language will also familiarize you with the different cultures associated with that particular language, open several doors for you to explore and converse with people speaking that language and eventually, it’ll make you a more open-minded person. The older you get, the more difficult it’ll become to pick up a foreign language – so that the oath of learning it before you turn 30!

9. Splurge on something expensive, that you’ve always desired.

You are about to end your 20s, and you have a decent job fetching you a stable income – so, don’t you think you deserve to gift yourself something expensive? Of course, you do! Buy that Rolex watch or Gucci bag that you’ve been eyeing for long, or just go ahead and spend on that latest iPhone which you think you can’t afford! Go for an expensive dinner date with your partner and relax at a 5-star spa, because you deserve it. The money will keep coming and going, so you shouldn’t box up your desires.

10. Date someone who’s just not your type!

Dating someone who’s not your type will add an interesting chapter to your 20’s story! You’ll learn and grow from being around that person who is absolutely different from you. Maybe the relationship won’t work out in the end, but you’ll surely figure out what kind of a person you wish to be with, in future. No matter what happens, you’ll either have a great time or a terrible time, but you will learn from your experience. This will also enable you to understand how you are, as a partner.

11. Stop holding grudges.

You’ve grown up enough to stop holding on to past grievances and understand that they are simply overrated. There’s no point in sticking on to something that has happened years ago and feeling low about it. You don’t need that negativity in life, and it’s better to set those cold feelings aside. Try and sort your differences with the other person and let go of something that’s not required in life.

12. Learn to say ‘Sorry’.

Apologizing is an art and not all can master it. However, it’s a good practice to know how to say ‘sorry’ and make up for something wrong that you’ve done. It’s often hard to admit that you are wrong, but people will respect you more if you can accept your faults. Saying the simple 5 letter word might actually seem to be difficult if you hold onto your ego and self-esteem, but once you say it, you’ll see that things will melt and become beautiful.

13. Make a reading list for yourself.

Having a proper reading habit will take you a long way, and make sure you finish reading all those books on your bucket list before you hit your 30s. Reading has several benefits like boosting your imagination, improving your communication skills, keeping your brain sharp and it’ll also help you learn about new things and become a more knowledgeable person. Get a Goodreads account and stick to it in the days ahead.

14. Binge watch all popular series that you’ve avoided all these while.

Starting from ‘F.R.I.E.N.D.S’ to ‘Big Bang Theory’ and ‘Breaking Bad’ to ‘Game of Thrones’, you’ve avoided watching all these because you wanted to stay out of the crowd, but they aren’t that bad as well! If not for anything else, watch them for the sake of getting yourself accustomed to their storyline, so that the next time another Season comes up, you won’t have to take a backseat while others show their excitement! And trust me when I say this, you’ll actually start liking them after a while!

15. Get inked!

Permanence might be a scary thought, and you are skeptical about how you’ll change over the years. But getting inked has a charm of its own. Make sure that it’s something which actually represents who you are at this point in your life, particularly if you’re prone to regret. Make up your mind, do your research well, find a good tattoo artist and go for it. If you don’t try it, how will you know about the magic it creates!

16. Learn to get organized.

While some people take this to a completely different level and get obsessed about it, I’m just asking you to free yourself from the mess that you are, and start organizing a bit. Putting an effort and working on your organizational skills in your 20s will pay off later in life since it’ll reduce your stress levels and save you a whole lot of time and money.

17. Go to the stadium and watch the World Cup Tournament of your favorite sport.

Whether you love cricket or football, for once in life, hit the stadium and watch a live match. Feel the energy that’s in the air, add your voice to the shout of the spectators, bite your nails while watching your favorite team score more and it’ll surely turn out to be one of the best memories of your life. You can surely do it later in life as well, but it’s gonna be more fun if you do it now, before turning 30!

18. Find that one friend who’ll stick to you, no matter what.

You have nearly 700 friends on Facebook who never fail to hit the ‘Like’ button as soon as you put up a post. But at midnight, when you are in a dire need of something, you don’t know whom to call for help! Guess that’s not the desired situation in which you’d like to be trapped. Hence, now is the time to find that one friend, who’ll just be there, without asking ‘why’ and ‘what’ – and extend the helping hand whenever you need.

19. Go for a cross-country road trip.

Still haven’t got an international driving license? It’s time to apply for it and plan for a cross-country road trip with your partner/ friends. Chalk out the route map and spot the places that you wish to cover. While flights might seem to be a more convenient option, this road trip will teach you several lessons that might come handy in other circumstances in life. And what more, you’ll come back with memories to cherish forever!

20. Fundraise for a cause and volunteer for change.

There are hundreds of problems in the society around us that need to be addressed, but people usually choose to stay away from getting involved in anything that needs a bit of hard work. Find out that thing which bothers you the most – is the raising pollution or illiteracy, or is it child labor or animal welfare? Fundraise for a noble cause and get associated with a volunteering project to bring some meaningful change to the society. While it might seem to be a very small step, your contribution will not get wasted.

21. Develop your taste for alcohol.

You’ve had enough beer since your college days! Now is the time to become a connoisseur. Before you hit your 30s, start developing your taste for good alcohol. Whether it’s Single Malt or Bourbon, Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio – shift your taste and start savoring whiskey or wine.

22. Stop having regrets for the things you missed.

Realizing that you’ve made a huge mistake by not taking up an amazing job offer abroad might seem like the end of the world, but it’s not. As you’ll grow older and wiser, you’ll understand that these things are better to be flipped as old pages and move on. People might keep reminding you of the things that ‘you could have done’ and the things that ‘you just skipped out carelessly’ – but for your own good – stop having regrets for things that never happened. Learn the truth that they weren’t ever meant for you!

23. Learn to cook a proper meal.

Surprise your friends and family with your cooking skills! Enough of instant noodles and sandwiches – before you hit the 30s, learn how to cook a proper meal. You don’t have to attend cookery classes for that, YouTube can help you out in this journey. Throw a surprise dinner for your loved ones, and present your culinary skills in front of everyone. Not only will they be proud of you, but knowing how to cook will help you for better survival in your life ahead. Also, cooking acts as a major stressbuster!

24. Start writing about the good things in life.

You don’t have to be a skillful author for this! The crux of this act is to jot down whatever good is happening in your life so that you learn to appreciate them and be grateful for everything. Most of us often miss out little things in the hustle and bustle of our daily routine. But if they are all written down at one place, then we’ll have a chance of turning the pages someday, to relive the goodness that’s present now, at this moment.

25. Learn the value of physical intimacy.

The days of casual sex are over and now, it’s time for you to value physical intimacy. Understand the dynamics you share with your partner and respect his/ her emotions that are attached to this entire act of lovemaking. Sex is no longer a matter of simple desire, but much more than that. Hence, it’s time to value the purity and intensity of physical intimacy.

26. Strengthen your political awareness.

Now that you are grown up enough, it’s time that you should be a responsible citizen and brush up your political awareness. Get into the habit of reading the newspaper and follow the news daily, know about what’s happening in your country and abroad. Build your own perspective rather than following others’ opinions blindly. Vote for the candidate whom you think to be the right one. Take part in the political discussions and put up your opinion.

27. Stop living for social media.

You’ve been addicted to Facebook and Snapchat all these time, and it hasn’t caused any harm to you. But now you should slowly get over it and start getting detached for social media as much as possible. The world doesn’t need to know where you are traveling, with whom you are taking selfies and what you are having for dinner! So keep them to yourselves! Let Facebook be a route to connect to distant friends, that’s it. Posing, pouting and showing off shouldn’t be your priority now.

28. Pay all your credit card debts.

For sure, you don’t want to step into your 30s with the financial burden of the 20s! Debt is a downer and it’ll keep creating stress that you don’t need as a weight choking you and holding you back from the great opportunities in life. As you still have time in hand, fix all the debts and clear everything – have a clean slate while moving ahead to the next decade.

29. Be at peace with yourself.

Being self-satisfied is extremely important. If you’re at peace with yourself now, then you’ll surely rock your 30s and the remainder of your life. Accept the reality and try to keep moving on. Don’t compare yourself with others and know that your purpose in life is different. Figure out what you want to achieve and work for higher goals. Try to be the best version of yourself.

30. Plan a ravishing birthday party, before listing down what all you wish to do in your 40s!

Last, but not the least, throw a birthday party that all your friends would remember in the long run! Stop being a miser, spend well because it’s your day and it’s never gonna come back again. Order good alcohol and all your favorite food, wear your most expensive clothes and celebrate like never before.

Cheers!

In case you think that I’ve missed out something, make sure to drop a line in the comment section below!

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