Monday, February 6, 2012

31

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And just like that, a year ends.  Last year, I opened the door to age 31, filled with trepidation, excitement, and some fear.  Truth be told, in the months leading up to my 30th birthday, I was a bit melodramatic.  There was a lot of "this isn't what I thought life would look like" or "why did this happen to me?" type of thoughts.  Some were verbalized, some were buried deep under my resolve to enter confidently into my 30s.

It turns out turning 30 wasn't scary at all - it was actually quite fabulous!  The past year will go down as one of the best years of my life.  The fact that I can say that is not on account of chance or luck.  I made this past year the best year of my life. The year included many great things, such as a trip to Paris, moving into a downtown condo I love, hosting friends/family in my condo, passing the CFA, PR'ing at the Victoria half marathon, and lots of trips with/to visit other bloggers! 

I learned a lot of things over the course of the past year, but the biggest lesson that stands out in my mind is that happiness is a choice.  I spent much of my 20s almost feeling like I was a victim of my circumstances.  But this past year, I realized that if I didn't like my circumstances, I either need to do something about it, change my perspective, or focus on the other wonderful things in my life.

I'll close with the chorus from "Do It Now," a song on Ingrid Michaelson's new album.  It really sums up how I approached my 31st year.

so do it now
do it right now
don't waste a minute on the darkness and the pity sitting in your mind and
do it right now
do it right now

31 held so many wonderful things; I can't wait to see what 32 will bring!!

32 comments:

Kelly (She Wears a Red Sox Cap) said...

Happy Birthday!!! I'm so excited for you that you had such a great first year in your 30s :) I hope you can make this year just as great!

Raquelita said...

Happy birthday, Lisa!

I loved this post and you really have had an incredible year with lots of amazing moments, many of them the result of your hard work, determination, and willingness to take risks. Brava!

B and B said...

Happy Birthday!!!!
Here's to a fun year ahead!!!!

Becky said...

"Happiness is a choice." Yes, yes, 100 times yes!!!! Happy happy birthday babe!

abbi said...

Happy Birthday! You definitely had an amazing year and am sure the next year of your 30s will be exciting as well!

AshleyD said...

Happy birthday! I completely agree that happiness is a choice and I'm so glad that you were able to practice that this past year.

Abby said...

Happy Birthday! I am so glad that you have enjoyed your 30's so much! You have had so many incredible experiences - that many never know in their entire life!

Happy Birthday! Love you sister! :)

missris said...

Happy happy birthday! This post is such a great reminder that you really do control your happiness. I think you've set an excellent example :) Hope this next year is at least as awesome as the last was!

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks said...

Great post, Lisa. Happiness really is a choice and sometimes it takes hard work to achieve! You really did a wonderful job of finding your happiness this year. Let's hope there's more of it to come in 2012. Happy birthday!

Carolina John said...

Happy birthday again!

Vanessa said...

Happy birthday! I hope the rest of your 30s are as wonderful as the first year was.

Leigh said...

Happy birthday Lisa! I hope you have a wonderful day!

Nora said...

You can't hear me but I'm singing a Happy Happy Birthday song that always gets stuck in my head after I hear it from a Mexican restaurant in STL =)

Enjoy your birthday (despite the work stuff)! So excited to know I get to see you a few times this year and can't wait for all that this year and beyond holds for you.

xoxoxo

Marlys said...

Happy Birthday, Lisa! I remember that day very well! We had a very mild winter, quite like the one we are having now, and then by the evening of the day you were born, a blizzard moved in and raged for 3 days! I hope that doesn't repeat itself! You've had a wonderful, exciting year and I only hope this one is the same! DO IT!

Kyla Roma said...

Happy Birthday, Lisa!! So happy that this year turned out to be such a great one, and that you made the decision to make it that way. I hope 31 blows your expectations away too :)

J said...

Happy Birthday! So exciting! I can't wait for my bday in march! My running coach has a similar mantra - he says "Live well now". Meaning basically you should start today and live and be happy every day! He explains it better - but I really like it.

Amber Johnson said...

You really did make this past year a good one!
Happy birthday to a fabulous friend! I know the next year will be just as wonderful!

Amber (Girl with the red hair) said...

Ahh I love this post SO MUCH. Yes, happiness is a choice and I think that once people realize that everyone would be a lot HAPPIER :)

I'm SO glad I was there for you/with you for so many of your big milestones during your 30th. I can't wait to see you in just over 5 months. I think 31 is going to be AMAZING for you.

Happy Birthday my beautiful, fabulous, smart, funny friend. XO

Cherry Blossoms said...

Happy Birthday and may the new year bring you lots of happiness!

Caroline said...

Happy Birthday!! I love this post, it really reasonated with me when you said happiness is a choice and you need to shift your perspective, rather than feeling like a victim to circumstances. Hope you make this year just as great as last!!

San said...

Happy Birthday, lady! You have a great attitude (you know, and that view from your condo is just GORGEOUS!).

E said...

Happy Birthday to a dear friend and fellow comrade in so many "adventures." You have a great outlook on life and that will bring you much happiness!!! Jason and I send you much love on this special day---and hope to rendevouz with you in Paris before we're all 40 :) (That means we have 5 years to make this happen before Jason hits the big 4-0!)

Kyria @ Travel Spot said...

Happy Birthday! I agree with you about happiness; you have to make it happen sometimes! You have done a great job of that over the past year! Here's to a great year ahead!

Ashley said...

Happy Birthday!

Jolene - EverydayFoodie said...

Fabulous post ... fabulous girl!

Happy Birthday Lisa!!!!!!

crystal said...

Great post, cute picture, and happy happy birthday!! Have a beautiful 32nd year!

Amanda said...

That's a great lyric! I love her.
Joyeux anniversaire, girl! :)

Stephany said...

I love this post so much! You should know I see you as such an inspiration for someone who had some rough years in her twenties and emerged from it, stronger and more confident.

Happiness IS a choice and sometimes, it can be a really tough choice to make but it's still better than wallowing in what we don't have.

<3

Jeanie said...

First of all, happy birthday! And second -- what an amazing woman you are! I remember your turning 30 -- is it more than a year I've been here? And this year, I've seen you grow and fly. Three cheers, my friend!

On an unrelated (or maybe related) note -- I leave for Paris April 17! Can't wait!

Lauren @ Sassy Molassy said...

That is so awesome, Lisa. Definitely a mindset I need to take on because waiting doesn't do a whole lot. Congrats on an awesome year and another one to come!! :) Hope you had a fabulous birthday!!

pinkflipflops said...

Love your perspective. ;)

Mandy said...

I hope this year is just as fabulous for you.