Choosing Not to Get Old


It’s kind of a bummer when you reach the end of a decade, and don’t feel like you’ve accomplished much. It’s a bit worse when you realize you’ve passed up all the ages of your favorite literary characters and then some.

I turn 30 this week.

It’s a different feeling than when I turned 20. I feel older. I feel wiser. I feel like the skin on my eyelids is looser!

Being 29 was… good and bad.

The bad stuff included depression and rejection.

The good stuff included The Hobbit, a brand new sexy pixie haircut, going down to a size four pants, and trying out dating for awhile.

It’s tempting to be melancholy this week. It’s the end of an era, a decade, my twenties. I can either see what lies ahead of me as lined with anti-wrinkle cream, or I can decide that my thirties are going to be the best decade of my life.

The other day, a motivational speaker said something that resonated with me: there’s no such thing as victims, just volunteers. People treat us how we let them treat us. We see our circumstances the way we want to see them.

So yes, I’m getting older. I’ll have crow’s feet by my eyes sooner rather than later. But it’s not the end of the world. My life will change at 30. I’ll publish some e-books. I’ll write awesome posts! I’ll discover new obsessions, read new books, and find new movies I can’t live without.

I’ll figure out how to do things just for me, and not for the approval of others. I’ll choose to have that meaningless, purposeless thing known as fun. I’ll decide to do things not because they’re logical, but because I want to do them. I may even change my personality a bit.

So bring on 30! I won’t go down without a fight!

46 thoughts on “Choosing Not to Get Old

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  1. 30’s rock! 🙂 Honestly. At least for this thirty-something-year-old, it’s finally the time of life when I feel happy being me. I came across your blog today for the first time and really like your writing, Charity. I used to think/believe that I could be a writer; now, living in a world of legal and political analyses all day (which I do love), space for “creative writing” has gone out the window. But, reading your blog is inspiring me to pick it up again.

    Thanks! And enjoy your birthday month!! 🙂

    1. I’ve heard that before, that your 30’s are a more self-confident time of life, since you’re long past the angst of teenage years and the anxiety of being in your twenties. Fortunately, I look younger than I am so maybe I can avoid wrinkles too soon! 😉

      Thank you, I appreciate that! I do hope you’ll return to creative writing! It can be frustrating but also very fulfilling. 🙂

  2. There’s was a time when age and time wasn’t counted. People looked young even at -“old age.” Whatever one consider “-old age.” I feel the wiser you get, the more stuff one can do… Yet, I say live happy and rejoice. Those people never seem to age even at heart. I am surfing, snowboarding, and motorcycle ride. I think as INTJ’s we tend to forget to love ourselves. I love your blogs. Reminds me that people understand my points of view as an INTJ. So, Thankxxx… By the way, we are only as old as we think. Happy B-Day 🙂

    1. Yes, I think INTJs tend to be hard on themselves… they are willing to overlook faults in those they love (to a certain point) but often not themselves. We also spend WAY too much time in our heads, analyzing ourselves — what have we accomplished? are we worth anything?

      Thanks. 🙂

      1. First and for most, I am a college student, “my goal” is to be the best CEO or make a company that is a Fortune 500. I have the ability and the resources. Yet, I failed in not loving myself until I found your blog and started reading everything about my personality. As an INTJ your blogs have helped me to be myself. Find ways to really be me. I share with you one thing I found out in all this: that is making yourself proud not for (parents or anyone else). I didn’t see it in me but I was search for my father’s approval, that was the big wisdom, I found on my journey. Have you ever read, “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho? He became a shepherd because he wants to travel. The rest is for you to read. On the other hand, I can agree with you about –“they are willing to overlook faults in those they love (to a certain point) but often not themselves.” I am reading “Execution The Discipline of Getting Things Done.” I seeing that I tend to overlook faults in others. Yet, we are not solving the problem because we are protecting those around us and/or love. To be an Executive in a fortune 200 company this brings a problem to execution. Mind you this is my opinion nothing more or less. To answer – What we have accomplished? We are one 5% or less than that thinking and analyzing ourselves gets us going!!! We are really good. My problem is “emotional fortitude” not accepting others way of thinking. We are growing in every realm. To me growth means good. –We don’t need to measure ourselves to others. Next – Are we worth anything? We are worth the world everyone is. I hope is this not overwhelming… Thank you for all your blogs.

        1. I still sometimes struggle in loving myself — there are days I just wish I was an extrovert! I look on those who can handle small talk easily with envy. I wish I could just enjoy something instead of picking holes in it. But God created me this way for a reason, so I must be content… improve what I can, and learn to enjoy just being me!

          Wanting to please someone else is natural, I think. People assume INTJ’s aren’t people-pleasers but I think we desperately want the approval of whomever we admire — such as a parent or a mentor. Often, INTJs are thought of as cold and robotic, and we tend to propagate that myth as self-preservation (and because we like being seen as threatening and brilliant), but really, we’re not.

          1. I forgot to love myself. I wasn’t giving love to myself and others. I forgot to love the simple things. Now I love the world. I struggle with loving myself. I coach myself on emotion and other thing. I am trying to find my own problem to fix them. I have been with the extroverts well in sports. Yet, I grow up and started to look at what I was doing? Why I was acting as an extrovert? “Picking holes is wrong.” – My opinion is we have too accept even as hard as it is. I usually remove myself when I feel like I am picking holes. Yes, we are smart, we challenge notions! That makes us really “smart” or “think different.” God made use in his image. Love it…
            We are people-pleasers… When we acknowledge this we protect those we love to the deepest extent. Sometime putting them first before us.
            I can agree I tried to overwhelmingly seek approval from my mentor. In spite the fact, I didn’t need to after coach myself. I asked him this simple question, “Who is one supposed to make proud?” I got the correct answer that made the difference. We as INTJ’s add value just like everyone else. Yet, if one doesn’t like me so be it. I am here to make my perfect just and right…
            I love you commented back…

          2. Some people refuse to be “pigeon-holed” by discovering their personality type — but for me, knowing I am an INTJ has helped me SO MUCH. Now, when confronted with something that used to worry me (“Why do I feel nothing for this person? Why aren’t I upset that we just broke up? Am I a sociopath?”) I simply go, “Oh, there’s the robot kicking in again!”

            What I struggle with most is still small talk with strangers. I was standing outside a dressing room today waiting for a friend and I COULD have talked to the clerk behind the counter — but I had no idea what to say and no real desire to say it. In retrospect, that’s not good. I need to work more on that.

          3. I refuse to be pigeonholed by letting people describe me as brown-haired. How dare people use descriptive words to talk about a particular aspect of my being?

          4. Why on earth should you talk to the clerk behind the counter? I’ve got my own share of guilt for not liking to talk to people, but I don’t understand feeling guilt for not starting up totally pointless conversations with perfect strangers you will never see again.
            If I were the clerk behind the counter, I would be begging heaven to prevent you from talking to me.
            Unless the clerk was trying to talk to you and you completely ignored her… That would be rude.

          5. Um… because I want to be more outgoing? I admire outgoing people who like talking to others, and I’m told that I can be very standoffish and unapproachable in real life. That’s not really the person I want to be. Fortunately, we went to lunch and our waitress was an outgoing person, so we wound up having an awesome conversation about Star Trek and the X-Men movies. Heh. I tipped her 30% just for being awesome.

          6. Oh, I see. I thought it was just about some external expectation that you should be other than you are, rather than a true desire to expand. Which might look ultimately like the same thing but are really considerably different.

          7. Nah… it was just weird that three of us were standing there together and none of us talked to one another; she avoided looking at me, so I think she was probably an introvert too. 😀

          8. Here’s one reason why I didn’t feel nothing for someone. I tried to leave someone who’s mind wasn’t like mine. I felt getting dragged down (sadness ect)… I hated that feeling. So I leave them and don’t feel anything towards them. I am an outgoing INTJ. Being that I am not scared of being smart. I don’t care what they think. Mind you most people don’t understand me. Why should I care about those whom don’t try to understand me. I will speak no more… You are not a sociopath that label will make you just that, because that’s what you think. “Robot,” I laugh towards that… Yet, that is the simple explanations…

            Remember our parents said, “don’t talk to strangers.” Yet, mine didn’t. I held different types of friend. When I say “different” I mean backgrounds. This had made me understand so much… Yet, I know littler. Conversation starts without any force. Yet, all this is my opinion…

          9. How do I define passion or having a passionate life? I came in here not to mock anyone or degrade. That’s not my job in life. You see you opened some a questions, I have little understanding. I have a vague concept of what’s my passionate life means. What is my passionate life? I meet this girl very smart into so much of what I was into. Let alone understandable. She didn’t act or played the part of not being -smart. Some of my friends do just that. It leads me to drift into a place where one girl changes my perception. That most smart girls are not into extreme things. – Boy am I dump for thinking that way. I was inspired, first she understand concepts and reasoning. I am blow away… I thought there we’re girls out there really like this. I started to look more into how do I define myself. Which brings me back to: “What is my passionate life?” I started wonder how I was going to template it to write what I wanted in life. Mind you I know what my passion is.

            So this is what I put:

            How much leisure time do I want?
            What leisure activities would I do?
            How would I get there?
            How would I be living? (house, car, family, influences, and people)
            What fulfillment will each bring?
            What am I willing to do to get there?

            What do you think any further help?

            Sorry, if I mocked anyone in my before message…

          10. Thank you for looking it over. – Your blogs mean so much… I hope you give yourself immense create for sharing your story.

  3. My aunt just turned thirty this year. She had a man for almost 11 years, and, well, she wasn’t enough for him. But on the much brighter side, she is starting a new job she LOVES, and is getting recognized as a local and talented musician. Her life is just getting started : ]

    1. Life doesn’t have to end at 30, that’s for sure! Some people say it’s the best decade of their life, since they’re finally past the insecurity of their 20s!

  4. Wishing you a happy birthday and a wonderful new year—and a new decade—of life!

    Since I am now in my 50’s, 30 seems like infancy to me. I’d love to be 30 again…knowing what I know now, of course!

    Love and hugs,

  5. “We see our circumstances the way we want to see them” – love this!

    I turned 25 this year. Not the same as 30, but I finally got a job after college, and feel like things could be pretty “stable” for a while. When I say “stable”, I say it in the nervous way, i.e. – “unchanging” and I could get stuck in a rut – and that gets my butterflies all nerved up. Your discussions over the past year about your transitions out of the 20’s helped me. I learned that it’ll be okay. Thank you.

    Best wishes for a fabulous 30th.

    1. Oh, trust me… life changes. It can change in an instant! So enjoy the stable times — excitement is no doubt on its way!

      Thanks. 🙂

  6. Sending a big shout-out to the birthday girl! *throws confetti*

    Been thinking about you, Charity as I know you once had doubts about this year. Girl, I love that you are being positive – like what Tryntsje says! 30 isn’t old. 🙂 2013 is going to be a spectacular year – you will benefit from maturity, wisdom and of course, some great new movies. 😉

    It’s an exciting prospect to know you’ll be publishing this year also! You go, girl.

    Hip, hip, hooray! Wishing you a wonderful day tomorrow – do something you love. 🙂

    1. I still have doubts but the trick is never to think too far ahead. In spite of my doubts, there’s a lot of exciting stuff to look forward to — like designing a cover for my book! Plus, Star Trek Into Darkness comes out in a couple of weeks. GIMME!

      Hope you like ancient historical fiction, because that’s what the book is. 😉

      Thank you! I’ll try and come up with something that isn’t my usual method of doing on my birthday what I do every other day of the week — write. =P

  7. What I like to think is that with every decade you get wiser; you can look back at the previous decade and think how much you have learned, experienced, and impacted the lives of others. Hopefully the you at 30 is much more mature and confident, settled and knowledgable than the you at 20. I bet you have great advice to pass down to others who have yet to bridge the wisdom gap between 20 and 30!

    I hope you will have a wonderful celebration and enjoy it, build lasting positive memories and become filled with hope and purpose for the future!

    1. You’re very sweet, Hannah, thank you!

      I’m certainly a lot different now than I was ten years ago — in just about every way you can imagine. I found out my personality type and that helped me better relate to my friends. I became a much better writer. I’ve tossed some hobbies by the wayside and picked up others. I tried dating for awhile. So, my 30’s should be fun… we’ll see!

  8. I didn’t want to turn 30 at all! But now I’m 32, and as long as I don’t think about how old I am, I’m good. 😉

    1. Most of the time, I don’t think about my age either, since it freaks me out to realize I’m an adult and don’t always act like one. Heh.

  9. So far I’ve been finding my 30s (I’m 32 on Sunday) to be rather splendid. I feel settled, calm, self-assured in who I am and where I’m going. I am who I am. It’s nice.

    1. That’s wonderful! I’m hoping determined to make my 30’s awesome, too! And you never know what might happen — a lot can change in only a few months!

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