Tomorrow I turn 40, and to be honest, I’m not dealing with it particularly well.
So, inspired by Jessie Stephens and her learned wisdoms, I made a list of some of the things I have learned so far and it made me feel a sense of peace about the passage of time.
So thank you Jessie for giving me the gift of reflection.
Watch: Penny McNamee's life lessons. Post continues below.
1. Learn to say no. Learn to ask for what you want. People are not mind readers.
2. When you are tired, buy a $25 sun lounger and go to sleep somewhere nice in the shade.
3. Say sorry to people you have hurt in the past. Remember that they are not obligated to forgive you.
4. Most people are doing their best with what they know about life at the time. This includes you. Forgive yourself. (See point above)
5. Learn to love your body. Well, make peace with it and look after it. Learn to dress in a way that lifts you up- this isn’t superficial, it will change your life.
6. As far as we know, you get one chance at life. Do the stuff, say the things, take the chances.
7. Kids are hard. But wonderful. But hard. No one tells you that in the flurry of trying to have one.
8. Everyone says this, but it’s true. Don’t save things for special occasions, make today special - use the chinaware, wear the nice knickers, and wear the shoes.
9. If someone repeatedly hurts and manipulates you and is toxic to be around, it is okay to walk away. They need to do some personal work. Your work is to walk away and let them do it.
10. When things are hard, start asking “what is life trying to teach me?” rather than “why is life doing this to me?”
11. Let your guard down with your closest friends. They will forgive you. They are not perfect and neither are you.
12. Surround yourself with the friends who are kind, who listen, who understand your inability to respond to texts in a timely manner, who can laugh at the terrible stuff with you, who cheer for you when good things happen.
13. Women need to support other women. Make a meal for a friend who’s snowed under, buy flowers for your bestie, send your favourite book to the friend who needs some kindness in their life. We need to look after each other, because sometimes the people who are meant to look after us don’t or can’t or won’t.