Sunday, June 21, 2015

THE LAST SUMMER OF MY 20'S: FIND A MANTRA, SKIP THE BUCKET LIST


First thing's first—I know that turning 30 isn't the end of my life. In fact, I've got it on good authority that this next decade is going to be pretty awesome. I've already started to feel a shift in myself since turning 29, and it's one that I'm looking forward to embracing even more deeply come October 28th, 2015.

My 20s (and ours collectively, to be sure) have been fraught with so much growth, and change and confusion and youthful angst and ecstasy. I'll keep the ecstasy, of course, but I'm also really excited to settle into (and enjoy!) the person the last 10 years has molded me into. Change is good, and growth is necessary, but some consistency and calm on in the inside? That sounds pretty nice.

And yet. Here I am fretting almost fanatically that this—just three short months—is the last summer of my 20s. And it starts TODAY. Why does that feel so heavy? Perhaps because summer is supposed to be the lightest, most-carefree season of all, and despite all this grandstanding about how awesome my 30s are going to be—I'm already mourning the end of my 20s as if the rest of my life will feel like the day after Christmas.

Now, as a rule I sort of loathe those "things to do before you're 30" lists because I think they put far too much pressure on the idea that you have to shelve a certain part of yourself once you bid adieu to that leading "2," or that somehow you're not living right if you haven't done x, y or z yet. Skinny dipping? Marathons? Exotic travel? Why on God's green earth must these things be accomplished before one turns 30? Frankly, I hope I'm skinny dipping until I'm in the ground.*

Instead of making a pre-30 checklist that I will inevitably forget about, I've decided to make this last summer of my 20s more about an attitude, a mindset and a mantra: LIVE. IT. UP. They say it takes about 21 days to form a habit, so if I can keep this up for about 90 days... I should be mentally golden when the big 3-0 actually happens. I don't want this summer (and ostensibly, my still considerably young life) to pass me by without doing my damnedest to feel fully present in my relationships, my professional life, my self-care and my experience of this great big world.

CLICK THROUGH FOR MY PLAN FOR 
LIVING IT UP IN THE LAST SUMMER OF MY 20S
(Because like, these are things we can ALL do)


GO AT LEAST ONE PLACE I'VE NEVER BEEN BEFORE: So far, my summer travel plans are shaping up to be a greatest hits tour of some of my favorite places: Montauk, Southern California, Seattle and Idaho are all on the books already. Don't get me wrong, I am thrilled to have even the option to travel to such places at all, but I also want to make sure I'm keeping my worldview fresh. New places and new experiences are such inspiration for growth—and why not try to do a little more of that before the big 3-0? Montreal and Maine are currently at the top of my reasonable-yet-sort-of-exotic-for-a-PNW-girl list, any other ideas?

EMBRACE THE FAUX TAN: As you may have read in this post from January, I dealt with a very minor—but entirely serious—bout of skin cancer last summer. I had a cancerous mole (and the surrounding skin) removed and what remains is a rather gaping scar, and a reminder that I'm paying now for the mistakes I made when I was younger. However, I'm resolved to stop treating my body like it's an exception to the rules. (It needs nutrients, protection and movement, just like everyone else's.) So what does this mean for a girl that loves a good glow? I'm lathering on SPF 30 daily (even off the beach), and embracing the enhancement of a faux tan. Luckily, I've found a self-tanner that I can apply without too much drama and that results in a color that's not splotchy or orange. God bless you, Hamptons Sun

STOP BITCHING ABOUT THE HEAT: I swear, we New Yorkers have seasonal amnesia. We live in extremes and cannot be pleased. Winter is the worst, summer is the worst. Fall isn't "cool" enough, spring doesn't exist. However, I'm trying to stay zen and positive about what already feels like a very hot, humid summer. This is the season we wait all year for, people! Complaining less in general is high on my LIFE to-do list, so might as well let something as uncontrollable as the weather just do what it do (and drink accordingly), no? Personally, I've found that Boulevard's Ginger Lemon Radler is absolutely the most delightful anecdote to a summer sweat there is. When I start to get a little stir crazy and complain-y in city, I'm just going to crack one open, remember to feel blessed global warming has not yet eliminated seasons altogether—and wear more linen. The hope is that by complaining less, I'll have more mental space to devote to appreciating what's great about summer (and life!).

SHOP A LITTLE LESS, DO A LITTLE MORE: Rome wasn't built in a day, and tigers can't change their stripes. I am a fashion-y person who loves clothes and lives for the thrill of a truly satisfying material purchase. I love to hang my latest discoveries outside my closet and gaze at them before I fall asleep. (Seriously.) However, we all know that no one looks back on their life and says, "Thank goodness I had all those hats." Granted, I think the right hat can really add to an experience or a vacation, but, I digress. This summer I want to focus more on investing in things (The new Whitney Museum! Thai food in Queens! Shuffleboard in Gowanus!) that will enrich my memories, not my closet.

WRITE, WRITE, WRITE: This year I'm working on re-dedicating myself to writing. I want to expand my content here on the site and hopefully do more freelancing, too. I feel pretty lucky that writing is my favorite way to express myself, and that I've found a way to do that here on SUILTSOY. I love sharing about myself (clearly) but I'd also love to hear from you guys if there are any hot topics or types of content for the blog of which you'd like to see more. Dating? Travel? Life in New York City? I'm all ears and poised with fingers on the keyboard...

DRINK THE METAPHORICAL RUM BUCKET: Actually, I mean this both literally and figuratively. Over Memorial Day weekend at The Shore, I was introduced to a Rum Bucket—a particularly lethal and lethally sweet cocktail served in a plastic beach pail. It's like a personal fishbowl, and it will get you quite drunk. In the midst of a night that felt like it was coming to an end (at least in my frequently yawning mind), the Rum Bucket came along and shook things up. Suddenly I felt revived, buzzy and giddily happy. It was the rum and the juice; and as I sipped that delightfully tropical elixir—fully aware that the vengeance of both a hangover and a sugar crash the next day would be epic—I was having so much fun. The morning would come and it would probably suck, but right then I was blissed out and present. I think as we get a little older, we often let the side of us that's always exhausted and constantly thinking about how great sleep is take over. This summer (and long after) I want to remind myself that it's okay every now and then to let the forward-thinking, vodka soda-drinking adult in me take a night off and revel in the sweetness of the now.

*If you're looking for some positive, 30-centric media, check out Refinery29's slideshow of advice from savvy, 30-something New Yorkers, as well as my girl Meghan's reflections on 30 things she learned by 30.

2 comments:

  1. Love the write, write, write idea. Can't wait to read future posts. Happy summer!

    Liv

    www.livforstyle.net

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