How Being Selfish in My 20s is Preparing Me to Be More Happy in My 30s

Mom working on computerIn my 20s, I would categorize myself as having spent the majority of this decade being selfish. Now, let’s not misunderstand, this was primarily because I was afforded the luxury of being able to do so. There’s a few things I’ve picked up in this past decade that I want to either drastically change or carry with me as I approach a new decade.

Because this year, I’m turning 30.

30 honestly doesn’t scare me off, offend me, or feel old, but it’s hard to not mark the start of a new decade without feeling like it’s kind of a big deal. When I was younger I had elaborate plans in my head of what my life would be like at this point. I think I naturally assumed I would feel older and therefore have my stuff more in order than I probably do right now. However, I don’t think I put much thought into how happy I would feel and I can honestly say I am pretty impressed with that aspect of my life at this point in time.

So many “big” life events happened in this decade:

-College graduation

-Started my first real job

-Went to grad school

-Got married

-Had a baby

And let me just tell you, as I’m sure you all know, that last one really turned my world on its head. And with that turning, my entire life suddenly became MORE. The desires of my heart exploded. My place in this world suddenly felt like a much bigger deal because now everything I did in the past, currently do, and will do in the future are all for him. I have the privilege and responsibility of creating a life for him that is exponentially better than my own (which was pretty great, might I add).

Outgrowing my selfishness.

This has been my greatest task and greatest reward from this decade. When I was in my early 20s I spent YEARS being selfish because it was the optimal time in my life to do so. I learned how to take all those lessons I learned from putting in hard work and I can now channel that into serving my family.

My selfish years served me well, but I’m so happy to be in a position that affords me the option to put my family and their needs first for a change. At times this can be extremely difficult, but I truly understand what a privilege it is to have.

Sometimes I feel like from the outside looking in, many people might categorize me as a selfish person still. They might think I have too many irons in the fire. Perhaps they see me frazzled at times. However, everything I do is for the betterment of my family unit…most importantly my son. I enjoy letting him hear me talk to his father about the exciting things that are going on in our lives regarding business. I think it’s a great example to let him see and understand that his parents work very hard for him. I love making sure I cherish every free moment I have with him that’s distraction free. Life is messy and complicated, but I live for the unexpected moments and the small pockets of joy I find in the ordinary. The giggles on the way home from school as I ask about his day. When he begs me to put the computer down and come play. When he wants to play in the kitchen along side me as I cook for our family. Being a mama for me means I’m busy, but I love that my son sees all that I constantly do and that he knows I do it all because I love him.

Working hard at feeling happy.

As I turn 30 this year, it marks a big turn in my life. I think I imagined things quite differently had you asked me many years ago, but I truly couldn’t be happier with where things are and the trajectory they are taking.

I’m going into my 30s with reckless abandon and ensuring that my family sees me working hard, but feeling happy. Prioritizing happiness and joy over everything else will keep me grounded and help me be a better wife and mom as I take on this new decade.

I will continue to strive for balance, but not ignore the things I love and long for. I will continue to build my dreams and create the type of future for my son that grants him incredible opportunity. I can’t wait to see what these next 10 years have to offer my family and me.


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