Your 30s is simultaneously an exciting and a daunting time.
Suddenly, your body is different, you have a new set of responsibilities, and even when you’re doing fine (trust me: you are doing fine), you just can’t seem to shrug off the nagging thought that everyone else is doing better than you (they’re not).
It can be a difficult time for many of us; thankfully, a lot of well-meaning 40-something and 50-something Redditors joined together on this Reddit thread to give 30-somethings valuable advice.
1. On Time
“Just because you’ve invested a lot of time, emotion, or money in a business or relationship does NOT mean that you’re obligated to stay with it.” OMGEntitlement
“After more than 10 years, I quit my last job which I should have quit 5 years earlier but stayed because of sunk cost fallacy. Starting over in a new field in my mid-30s is terrifying but for the first time in over a decade, I have full weekends to enjoy and am already making more in an entry level position.” MrMeeeseeks
“I agree 100%. I wish I would have walked away from bad relationships and jobs when I knew they weren’t working. I wish I had those wasted years back waiting for things to get better. Now I waste no time. I am almost 45, if it’s not working I am gone. No more wasted time.” Katherine1973
2. On Planning
“I would emphasize the power of planning. Whatever you want to do, draw a plan, follow through, adapt, keep going. I learned this way too late in life.” wordserious
“Around 45 I realized that I had better start living consciously or I was going to run out of time to do all things I want to do. So every year on my birthday I check in with a list – do I still like my job? How are my finances? How is my health? How are my relationships? Have I read all the books/seen all the movies/ done all the fun things I wanted to do this year? No? Change as needed. We think only seniors need bucket lists, but none of us know how long we’re going to be here.” VulcanGreeting
“Your future is yours to make. It does not happen to you, you make it happen. Don’t want to be alone in the future? Make friends now! Want to be able to enjoy life in your 50s, 60s, 70s? Take care of your health now!” wordserious
3. On Work
“Quit the job you hate before you burn out.” braille_animalia
“I quit customer service to earn a degree and graduating this quarter in my mid 30s. It’s hard but you’ll get there.” kinethix
“If you don’t do anything, two years will pass anyway and you will hate yourself for not doing it. Now is the time to start your dream.” sonia72quebec
4. On Retirement
“Start retirement savings NOW.” GreenSalsa96
” Figure out your annual expenses. Not your pay, your expenses. These are the things you need just to survive. Rent, electricity, food, etc. This does not include things like Netflix, eating out, beer, etc. Figure out how much you’d have to add to that number to stay sane. A netflix sub, enough for a movie or two a month, eating out once in a while, a little fun money for games, whatever.” KazeNoKama
“Take you expected annual cost at retirement (e.g. $50k) and multiply by 25. This is your target number for your nest egg (e.g. $1.25M). Some hit this number early and say “Fuck You” to the boss before the normal retirement age of 62.5. If you can live on $40k/yr, your “fuck you” number is $1M. $80k/yr = $2M.” chortle3
“Money isn’t everything, but you need some to survive. And save for your retirement. Why? Because retirement isn’t an age, its a financial status.” affordable_firepower
5. On Fitness
“If you’re not regularly exercising and eating well, start right this second and commit to it. As you age into your 40s your body becomes less forgiving of your indulgences, and it becomes much harder to start from zero. And when your body starts to fail you in new unfamiliar ways, it’s a lot easier to recover if you’re in good shape.” Zer0_Karma
“My advice is to commit to taking care of yourself by exercising and eating right regardless of whatever else is going on in your life. The people who tend to have problems are the ones who either never work out but keep eating like they’re in their 20s, and the people who do work out a lot and then stop (because of having kids or a promotion or whatever) but keep eating like they’re still working out. If you’re used to having a workout schedule in addition to the rest of your life, you won’t drop it when something changes.” RunsWithShibas
“Eat a healthy mix of proteins, fibers and carbs, and do a reasonable amount of cardio, and add some weight work, instead. Something a normal human can actually have a shot at keeping up.” cr0ft