The Next Stage Of Life: Uncertainty in Your 30's
Living In Your 30's
Life, Love and Skepticism
I'm now into my 30's and I have come to understand that there are very little facts in life, even in the world of science. Even scientific fact changes with ever growing testing and discovery.
Most of what I believed to be fact, has now gone out the window as simply uninformed opinion, given by people with either a bias, or an agenda and I am glad I have discovered it now.
When I was a young boy, I was always ambitious. I would always take risks that the other boys wouldn't. It had the effect of having me ostracised at times, seen as weird or different.
I showed an extroversion in my personality when I was put down by others, meaning I would always be much more driven and action-seeking when I was told something couldn't be done.
For all of my friends, I was the very first to move out of home, in pursuit of a dream career as a popular radio DJ. This was the first phase, my 20's.
The teen years were about love, heartbreak, friendships, drama, hanging out, parties and breakups.
For me at 18, while the other kids were out nightclubbing, I believe I had wisely separated myself from the masses by actually becoming a mobile DJ. For me, this meant being given exclusive access to some of the most fun parties, and I was in charge of the fun.
While I could earn a living, I also had the chance to meet pretty girls and build new friendships. I always thought this to be a smart move for a guy still concerned with the party life.
But responsibility for my own life was ever increasing and it meant, university and a career.
And it gets interesting here, because I always knew what I wanted to be. I wanted to be a famous radio DJ. And so, after study, I moved to a small country town, all alone, to build my career.
While everyone else was applying for work in the big city for office work, accounting, law, banking or a trade I was a lowly paid DJ. And much to my disappointment, the pay did not increase much over the years.
Into my 20's and my ambition grew as did my work opportunities. I saw my country through work and travel. I didn't think at all of settling down, as my old high school friends began to do.
They were buying homes, getting married and a few were having children.
By our late 20s, I had fame, but they had the income. I had not bought a home, had slowly increased my debt to pay for my life that I couldn't quite afford and wanted to know what was next.
Over time, a pressure started to seep in that I called, "Greg when are you going to settle down and start a family? You aren't getting any younger you know?" (Yes, a long title right?)
But because of my nomadic lifestyle and because of the perception that I might only be a 'party man', it became harder to meet a long term romance because of their potential lack of trust.
Also, I would only spend 1-2 years in each location, meaning I had to leave my relationships behind.
- No permanence
- No home ownership
- No long term romance
- No stability
- Low income
- Abundance of social events
- Fun, entertaining job with a ladder to climb
- See the country, enjoy the sights and sounds
- Meet new people
- Experience short term romance
So this was my 20's. My friends with mortgages and kids, perhaps having that one trip to Europe for their honeymoon, and me, alone, driving across this desolate country with a slowly increasing debt to the banks in the hope riches would one day come.
However, along the way, something changed. I began to notice my old radio mentors had retired to a life of anonymity, to little country towns on minimum wage, to jobs in real estate and even as hosts of backyard Karaoke competitions and mobile DJ work. Many were divorced and alone, still did not own their homes and just lived in ageing obscurity.
By age 29, I was living on the Gold Coast, on a low wage, working 6 days a week and the entertainment value of my career had worn off. I realised I had no other skills but to entertain people and this is only good when you are young, especially if you are not earning a hot million a year. I also had no prospects for marriage and I was buying into the social pressure we all feel to settle down and have kids.
It was time for a huge change.
And this is the first crossroad from the 20's to 30's.
The confusing crossroads of our 30's
"The 'Dirty 30's"
At age 29 I knew it was time to somehow find a partner and take her seriously. But from how my own life journey was playing out, I doubted it would be a simple process and I was sure that it would take me much further away from my childhood friends and my family than my radio career.
I still had my youthful drive and ambition but now it was not based on searching for adventure. It was all based on finding stability and worrying about finances.
- Finding true love and marrying her
- Having a memorable honeymoon
- Buying our first home together
- Welcoming our first child into the world
The older I became, the more I loathed being treated like a young up-and-comer. I demanded business respect. I wanted much more control of my time and there was no way I could find stability when I was still being treated like a boy instead of a man.
There comes a huge shift I realise at age 30 where you worry about dumb things, as though life is going too quickly. I was feeling old because I was still having trouble letting go of a life of adventurous fun with no foreseeable consequences.
But the consequences DO come. They do appear. Everything must be paid for. For me, it was to ensure I had savings in the account, had a stable income, build a sideline income and ensure I had a wife to build a life with.
I felt as though I was on the back foot. Everyone I knew was married with children.
And so, somehow, I managed to meet and attract a Russian bride! Oh would you believe it!!?
To be fair, I NEVER registered on any Russian dating sites. I actually met her on Skype, back when Skype allowed you to add random people from around the world.
This became the ultimate International romance. She was young, pretty, funny, open and also seemed to have a lot of drive and ambition.
We married, honeymooned and then got to work building a life...or so I thought.
The 30's were about a solitary life, worrying about paying off debt, coming home to the wife, of course, obligatory weekend dinners with her friends and very little 'bro time'. My male friends, previously so important to me, fell by the wayside.
But a small feeling began to grow and it was sparked by a question: "What's next?"
You see, I had realised that most of my ambition was aroused when I was single. Now that I was married, I felt a complacency overcome me. And it overcame her as well.
She hated her job but she needed it to pay for her life. I was working full time in sales while trying to build two sideline businesses. The job slowly killed me inside but my ambition was freedom to work for myself. It was the hardest challenge. That is, until my marriage ended.
Now, here we have a conundrum, and where the collision occurred.
There is a point on an axis where all things meet. However you live your 20's is entirely up to you. But the most amazing thing happened in my journey.
I found myself single again, albeit I was now free from job slavery. My businesses were making me a better income and I had found several forms of auto-piloted income that returned a small but decent added income.
My loving wife had, well... found a MUCH older man with BIG pockets and he was willing to pay for her life, freeing her of her job.
But here is the collision. Most of my friends were now either separate or completely divorced. Not all, but most. Many had lost their homes to the divorce. Lawyers and court fees had chewed up their life savings and we all found ourselves seemingly back at square one!
We were now mid 30's and having to begin again.
And what we realised is that we had been lied to. The lie of the happy marriage, white, picket fence, secure job and life security and stability was all one huge, dirty lie.
Had I known this before, I would have continued the single life and just moved overseas to teach English for a few years to see more of the world. I would NOT have been seeking stability at home to 'settle down'.
Yes I had an edge over people as far as life experience was concerned, but we were all back to questioning the meaning of life.
Here is what the 30's brought us
- Self doubt
- Lack of confidence
- Exposure to the lie
- Unhappiness in our relationships
The 20's were the living dream! We did not know about the impending doom for buying into societies crumbling structure. Yet, we all collided and were forced to ask, "What's next?"
The answer came!
Settling down? Forget it! Here is the alternative:
Plan for yourself and then come across a great partner goimg your way. Think you can't travel with kids? YOU CAN! My sister's husband is a pilot and their kids have always travelled.
Stop blaming your ex-partner for your situation in life. You created it with your own self-limiting beliefs. Your belief system got you here!
So here are some lessons we all learned and agreed upon to make you understand that life has really only just begun and the adventure now awaits you:
- You are not old. You are wise and still very young and strong
- There is no way you can still relate to teens and 20 somethings
- Guys in their 30's can definitely still date women in their 20's
- Women in their 30's will be happy to date a strong male in their 40's and 40's, so guys you will always be able to date women 10-15 years your junior
- Younger does not always mean fitter
- Younger does not always mean more adventurous
- Older does NOT always equate to wiser
- We are being told a lie about the happiness of settling down
- The first marriage is a kick up the butt on who NOT to marry and forces you to think harder and longer about what real love and commitment is
- The world is waiting for you
- Debt must be gone by 40 or you will be a very poor old man or woman
- You may believe that your 20's are the years to build your life. But from observation, you will be forever building your life. This will never end. It is a journey and there is no right or wrong path to take. Your path will always be different than mine
- Most facts are actually just opinions given by uneducated, opinionated people, except those that can be proven conclusively.
- Life is better when you remove societal pressure.
- Whatever you do to make your money, ensure it is something you can love for many years. Too many people are stuck in dead-end jobs earning the same pay they would earn from something they love.
Finding My Entrepreneurial Path
A Year of Letting Go. A Year of New Questions
By about our mid to late 30's, we start to become absolutely ok with our age, provided we understand that we can no longer relate to teenagers or people in their early 20's. They are just going through what we went through.
Perhaps we want to be in their world. But over time all of those people will soon be in their 30's and 40's, 50's and 60's and a never ending supply of new 20's will replace them.
They will all lose their hair on their heads and grow hair in unsightly places. They will all hit their 30's with abundant social pressure to settle down and have kids. And if they get to their 40's without their first divorce, they are one of the very few who do.
Now this may seem a little negative on the outset, but it is actually a blessing. To be able to begin again with all of the old mistakes made and learned from gives you an awakened consciousness.
Being able to reset the clock and begin again by letting go of all of the B.S is such a gift!
Here is what I did with my new found single life:
- Traveled through Asia and throughout the U.S
- Scuba dived some of the rarest places in the world
- Built an auto piloted online business called How To Divorce, an audio series a mined helping newly separated couples navigate divorce without losing their entire fortune
- Bought several ATM's for cash flow positive income
- Destroyed my debt
- Changed my entire career to something I was passionate about
- Started a successful seminar company teaching men and women about living a highly active social lifestyle (Lessons from all of my years building social confidence in my radio career). The seminar company also taught step-by-steps on how to create solid returns on passive streams of income.
- I dated like crazy which really helped me to get over my ex and learn to validate my worthiness to the opposite sex again. (Amazing it's even better now than in my 20's)
And I found two of the closest male friends who felt exactly the same way I felt about the path to happiness.
By the late 30's, from observation, people tend to begin to realise that most of what we believed to be the truth is actually a lie and the path to a righteous life is not always the path to a happy life.
The 30's is about learning selflessness and learning about the fragility of life.
Now some people will begin to find out how it can all be lost when they are in their 40's. But I believe by understanding it in your 30's, you are learning REAL life lessons, and you now have a lifetime to benefit from all of the losses, all of the failures, all of your new found success and all of the letting go of menial, useless attitudes to life.
For most of the men and women in their 30's who were forced to begin again, it was time to re-evaluate life. But you may feel as though all of your options are quickly disappearing. You may feel like you have just missed your chance. And this is not true.
Your chance to discover TRUE happiness is just about to come. All that you believed would make you happy before was actually quote shallow and based on what society, government and church all told you were the keys to happiness. And you were only told this lie to control you, and to keep you where you are.
I now wonder what the 40's will bring me one day. I know that I will tread carefully financially and I know I will not pass up a chance at great romance, even if it isn't to last. There is no going forward, bitter about past pains. It all looks amazing.
I would prefer to have a bank of amazing memories than a bank of regrets.
I have played harder than many of my peers. I took risks that others were too scared to take. I was never into drugs or alcohol. But I lived a risky adventure. This may give me an edge because I take actions without much fear, while others who settled down too early, simply freeze.
Some people in their 30's have money and some don't. But many are already into their first divorce and are really unhappy and discontented with their life. It is something they all share, that regardless of how much they have or how little, in finance and "toys", they all know that it isn't the path to a great life. It is simply a way to keep you where you are.
Money does not bring happiness. It only brings opportunity. And with opportunity you will be out there, living your 30's, preparing for your 40's and beyond.
The life you were told to lead was a bit of a scam. There is so much more to this life and it is time to REALLY live it.