10 Things I Want to Do in My Thirties

By Camille Styles
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I’m turning 30 today!! And I’m pretty darn excited about it. While it’s a bit surreal to think that my twenties have come and gone, it’s exhilarating to think that I’m standing on the brink of this new chapter full of adventures, new friendships, and life lessons (learned from plenty of mistakes, no doubt!). Not that my twenties weren’t amazing. I met and married my soulmate and we created the other little love of my life, and I couldn’t be more grateful that I get to start this next decade with those two by my side. On the work front, my twenties were all about finding my passion — trying on different hats until I found a fit that made me love Mondays as much as I love Fridays (usually, at least.) I feel so lucky to get to do what I love every day. And in honor of this new beginning, I thought I’d take some time to consider: what are 10 things I want to do in my thirties? This isn’t a bucket list, and it’s not comprehensive. It’s about things I actually want to do, not things I feel like I should do (guess what? I don’t actually want to run a marathon or take a cross-country road trip.) This list takes for granted that I want to be a better mom, floss daily, and volunteer more, and instead focuses on 10 things that are more about having fun and enjoying the moment. Because if there’s one thing that I learned in my twenties, it’s that a decade goes by way too fast.

*homepage image by wynn myers

Go surfing.

I’m happiest when I’m near the ocean, and there’s something about surfing that represents total freedom and gutsiness to me. Since I’ve never touched a surfboard in my life, this one will also be about kissing my fears goodbye and just going for it… and I have a feeling that the exhilaration I’ll feel when I ride that first wave will make it totally worth it.

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Master bread baking.

The kitchen is my happy place, but so often when I’m in it I’m rushing around trying to get a dish put together in the quickest amount of time possible. For me, bread symbolizes slowing down — a return to the simple pleasures of life. I’d love to take time to master a signature bread recipe to make at the start of each week — one that we’ll spread with good butter and salt right out of the oven, and that will elevate weekday sandwiches to something worth celebrating.

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Eat sushi in Japan.

When I think back on my twenties, some of the most influential experiences undoubtedly happened while traveling to other countries: Italy, France, Spain, Greece… each of them broadened my perspective on the world and helped shape the way I approach food, design, even relationships. In my thirties, I want to go to Asia for the first time and soak up a completely new culture and its way of eating, living, and looking at the world. And hopefully eat sushi here.

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Finally learn to sit up straight. 

This one is the closest to a “resolution” on my list, but I’m determined that my thirties will finally be the decade where I finally master excellent posture! Despite my best intentions (and pilates classes), when I get tired or really into what I’m doing, I inevitably notice myself slumping over the keyboard. Maybe ballet classes will be my next plan of attack?

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Embrace the weekend.

One of the best parts of getting older is (hopefully) learning to prioritize what’s really important. A big part of my twenties was finding my creative work passion, and while I definitely want to take that to new heights in my thirties, I’m also determined to not let work be all-consuming. Life is too short to work through the weekend, and in my thirties, I’m going to be the type of person who is not afraid to turn off my phone on a Saturday to give my undivided attention to family and friends and creating great memories together. After all, no one ever looks back at the end of their life and says they wished they “spent more time working,” right?

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Live in Europe for at least 6 months (and have a picnic at Versailles.)

Every time I visit, I’m reminded of how differently Europeans approach life than Americans — lingering with family for hours over lunch, wandering the city with no other mission than to get inspired or be entertained. I always try to bring back a bit of this sensibility with me, but I think the only way to fully experience it is total immersion. This is actually something that I wanted to wait until after we had kids to do — I have a feeling there will be something really magical about experiencing the beauty of Europe through the eyes of a child.

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Rediscover poetry.

When I was in high school, I loved reading poetry. My favorite english teacher (or my poetry loving mom) would send me one of their favorites, and I’d pore over the words until I felt the transcendental beauty of it. That’s something that I’ve lost as I’ve gotten older (and too busy, perhaps?), but I’m excited to reengage with poetry and challenge myself by reading something that takes a little more effort to really appreciate.

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Splurge on an “investment” piece.

It might never seem like the “right” time to splurge on that pricey bag or piece of jewelry, but hey — if I can swing it, life’s too short not to buy that thing that I really love, that I’ll keep forever, and that’s so beautiful and timeless, it’ll make me smile just to look at it. Now to choose what to set my sights on…

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Own only gorgeous lingerie.

I have a drawer full of practical bras that get the job done and disappear under my clothes… but what I’ve really always wanted is a lingerie drawer that made me feel girly and sexy! So wonder what would happen if I tossed all my boring undergarments and swapped them out with pretty, silky, lacy, all-matching sets that made getting dressed every morning more fun? There’s only one way to find out…

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Master a headstand.

I’m far from an experienced yogi, but this ranks right up there with surfing (see slide 1) as the most butt-kicking symbol of strength and (quite literally) balance that I’d love to master in my thirties. I think it seems super hard and like it would require a lot of effort on my part, which is what would also make it so exhilarating.

***And for those of you who are already well into your 30’s or beyond, I’d love to know: If you could celebrate that milestone birthday again, what advice would you give your 30-year-old selves?

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