Here's 34 Things I've Learnt in 34 Years
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Here’s 34 Things I’ve Learnt in 34 Years

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number 34

I recently set myself a challenge: To come up with 34 lessons I’ve learnt in my 34 years on this fine planet of ours.

It took me a few hours but it was such a beautiful experience – one that made me smile and shed a tear. Here are my 34 Lessons from 34 Years of a life I now embrace in it’s totality - flaws and all :)

1. Love

Before you can truly love someone, you need to firstly love yourself.

2. Money

Money isn’t everything. Seriously. And neither is climbing the corporate ladder.

3. Drinking

Don’t try and keep up with the boys when drinking. It may seem cool at the time, but it can result in a hell of a lot of damage – both to your body and to your reputation.

4. The Naysayers

Someone will always try to pull you down. They call it the Tall Poppy Syndrome, and it’s especially bad in Australia. Accept it, and keep on moving onwards and upwards my friend!

5. Your Body

R – E – S – P – E – C – T your body. It’s the only one you will ever have. Talk nicely to it, exercise, and eat well, allowing it to have some treats every now and then.

fat talk

6. Love will find you

When you stop looking for love you it will find you. It really will.

7. Listen

Music is sooooo good for the soul, and guided meditations are great for the mind. Learn to chill out every now and then, and slowly develop it into a habit.

8. Friends

Friends come and go, and that’s okay. You’ll make many more in your lifetime, and those that you are left with will be your REAL friends.

9. Grief

Grief can be debilitating, and it wont completely go away – but it will ease.

10. Passions

Finding what you are passionate about is hard for most of us, but once you find it – wow! So keep searching and trying things, because what is a life worth living if you aren’t passionate about it!

11. Deaths and Weddings

Death and wedding brings out the good and bad in people, so I advice to prepare yourself! Have contingency plans in place. Expect people to go slightly – or extremely bonkers, and set some ground rules, especially if it is your own wedding. 

12. Diversity

Difference and diversity are wonderful things that make the world we live in a truly amazing place. Embrace your differences, and those of others around you.

13. Equality

Unfortunately, even in this day and age, women still need to work harder than men to gain respect, recognition, a higher position and wages. 

14. Just Say No!

It IS okay to say no – because you aren’t interested, because something compromises your values, because you are really busy, because you are tired, or just because. You don’t need a reason!

15. Be a Bitch

If you are too nice you’re a pushover, if you push back you’re a bitch…apparently. These days I choose to be the later (although I’m apparently still too nice, god dammit!).

16. Pets

Pets are truly your best friend, and saying goodbye is heartbreaking. Savour those cherished moments with your pooch or other pet of choice. Take them for walks…stop making excuses as their lives are a mere ripple in the pond compared to ours.

What's Up?!

What’s Up?!

17. Time

Time brings with it knowledge which in turn makes you wiser. It also heals most wounds. True that.

18. The World is Full of Beauty

There is beauty all around us – all you need to do is open your eyes and truly see.

19. Mistakes

We all make them. Suck it up, learn from them, and move on.

‘Mistakes are a fact of life. It is the response to the error that counts.’- Nikki Giovanni, American poet, activist and author

20. Find Your Voice

Your opinion does count for something. Remember that – always.

21. Success

Don’t judge your success by others interpretations of the word. They will never measure up to yours.

22. Doctors

Find a doctor you feel comfortable with and ensure that you get regular check ups. Be honest with them, but also question them, and if you feel you need to, seek a second – or third – opinion.. 

23. Women in there 30′s

The 30′s – for a woman – brings with it a feeling of comfort in your own skin (once you get over the whole 30 thing that is). It’s in their 30′s that women truly blossom.

24. Dreams

Don’t let anyone crush your dreams. People will try. That is a guarantee. Rise above and ream BIG!

25. Age

Don’t wish your life away wishing you were older, because you will spend the later part of your life wishing you were younger and wondering where the years went.

26. All Sorts

People come in all shapes and sizes, and no one is perfect – even the supermodels. PHOTOSHOP is EVIL (aside from when you are captioning awesome photos)!

you sexy minx

27. Movies

A good film is like a fine wine. Get your butt out and go to the cinema, eat popcorn, and immerse yourself in a great movie every now and then. 

28. The Good Stuff is Free

It’s true what they say – the good things in life are free. I know that every time I play with my dog or I get a cuddle from my niece.

29. Grandparents

Spend time with your Grandparents…and stop making excuses. Your time with them is precious, and no one will love you in the way that they do. This may be my one and only regret.

30. Exercise

One day you will need to exercise. The fact is, your body just needs it, and so does your mind.

Work on finding something that suits you, that is gentle on your mind, body and soul, and pay no attention to fads. I find yoga absolutely awesome – and gentle! No more slugging my guts out at the gym for this little yoga bunny. My wrist reminds me of that often, after the damage I did lifting weights!


31. Relationships

The ‘honeymoon’ period of any relationship fades…but sometimes you are left with something amazing. At other times – not. Sometimes a person was only meant to be in our life for a certain period of time to teach us something. 

32. Just Walk

It is really okay to walk away, from anything. Comfort yourself in the fact that you at least tried or realised it wasn’t for you at that given moment in time.

33. Letting go

Learn to let go of hatred. It only ends up turning you old and bitter. This is one of the best things I ever did.

34. Because I’m Happy!

Allow yourself to be happy, whatever the situation. If your not – make some changes or get out.

What are the most valuable lessons you have learnt in your lifetime so far?



  1. Pretty good insights. Not sure I have the time to come up with 30 of my own, but I should try.

  2. I love your list! I am 46 so it will take me a little longer, however I will set some time aside to compile my list too!

  3. Oh Janine! How you make me cry :) Some of the things do come with age and the more we move on in life, the more we learn. Sometimes the harsh way, sometimes the easy way but the victorious is the one who made it through and came out!

    I will definitely be doing a same thing…love the idea! :)

  4. Not sure I’m up to listing 63, but I’ll try.

    What will you add to your list this year?

    • Hmmm I have a few things already! Go with your gut, don’t only do things to make others happy, take time out to smell the roses – but I’ve really already learn’t those things. It’s too soon to share with you, but over the next few months I am sure to learn things from certain changes I am making to my life – apart from those I have shared previously – so we will see!

  5. I agree with 2, 4, 5, 9, 13, 14, 19, 22, 25, 29 and 32.

    In response to 11 and 15, I have to say…unfortunately YES. ;)

    I’ll have a go for my 30th in 16 months time.

  6. What a list! Can’t wait to see what you add next year :)

  7. Great list and great insights Janine! Thanks so much for sharing. 46 is on the horizon for me, just a few short days away. I wonder if I can up with 46 lessons! I’m sure I can. I may have to give it ago :)

  8. Don’t you just love all this wisdom at 34? Pretty dang awesome! (#15 gave me a chuckle!)

  9. What’s next for your Janine? What will be the 35th thing that you have learned? I can’t wait to read it.
    As for me, I have learned that chocolate cures most of my headaches…

  10. I always love learning from others’ wisdom and your post is packed with wise words, Janine! =) My favorites are: “There’s beauty all around us” and “Don’t judge success by others’ interpretation of the word.” Those are really meaningful to me at this point in my life. I also really appreciated all you said about body and exercise. I want to be more active this year, but I definitely want it to be for the right reasons!

  11. Beautiful list! Gives me idea on what to post on my birthday :D I still have plenty of time since it’s still 2 months away. yay!!!

  12. What a great post, Janine!  I am sur3 it will take me a while, I am 47 so I’d better get started!!  It is amazing what we learn a life time if we want to.. And it is amazing what we do accomplish even if we dont ‘think we have done so much.. Live without regrets..

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