If you’ve ended up here, you’ve probably been searching for some inspiration to help ease the crisis triggered because you’re turning 36.
I know you’re freaking out, but I’m here to help! Let me tell you a few things.
Firstly, your life is NOT over! (seriously, it isn’t!). Secondly, turning 36 isn’t the end of the world! (once again, it isn’t!). And lastly, here are TWENTY awesome reasons to convince you why you should embrace turning 36!
1. Life is all about the little things
Turning 36 is no different, nor is it too late to start appreciating the little things in life.
Perfect happiness is a beautiful sunset, the giggle of a grandchild, the first snowfall. It’s the little things that make happy moments, not the grand events. Joy comes in sips, not gulps.Sharon Draper
As you get ‘older’, you learn that it is the little things that count. A good coffee. Sunshine on a cloudy day. A nice glass of wine. Fluffy clouds. A cozy blanket or a hot shower. Hugs.
What little things are you grateful for in life right now?
Why not write a gratitude list to celebrate turning 36?
2. Birthdays mean CAKE!
Did I say CAKE?!
Turning 36 is your chance to treat yourself to the cake of your choosing.
Chocolate mud cake, cheesecake, pavlova, cupcakes.
Get a little decadent!
3. You have more life experience
In turning 36, life experience is a given. You’ve notched up 36 years of life experience – nothing can replace that!
Why not put your life experience to good use by giving back? Become a mentor, coach someone, share your experiences with someone in need, or write them all down in a memoir.
4. It’s all about YOU!
It’s YOUR birthday, so celebrate your way. Be it a party, a getaway, a night out on the town, or a night in on the couch, treat yourself. You deserve it!
5. Me time
Nothing is more restorative than some dedicated me-time doing something good for your soul (or nothing at all!). And why not make this a priority when you turn 36?
Me-time is the perfect way to recharge your batteries, whether by sleeping in, having a couch day, meditating, checking in for a pamper session, eating your fave foods, or going for a walk along the beach.
6. Good friends
Time is precious and should be reserved for real people who appreciate you for you – and vice versa.
At 36, it’s no longer about being part of the ‘cool’ group. By now, you would have realised who your REAL friends are and how important they are.
I’m blessed to have amazing friends who support me through everything. I’ve, tongue in cheek, nicknamed you all the ‘Janine believer’s’, because, without your support and belief in me, I don’t think I would have gotten this far. You keep me moving forward and upwards!
7. Appreciating sleep as the nourishing gift it is
There is no better relief than a quality night’s sleep, especially when you wake up feeling rested and refreshed the next day, ready to take on the world! And by the age of 36, sleep should be your priority.
If it isn’t, here are some ideas to help you prioritise sleep by practising sleep hygiene.
Ban tech from your bedroom, unplug at least 2 hours before bed, make your bed every morning so you can fall into a nicely made bed at the end of the day, and treat yourself to some nice bedding to sleep like a queen. This will also make your bedroom more conducive to things such as intimacy 🙂
8. Embracing routine
When I was younger, I prided myself on living by the seat of my pants and being the queen of multitasking however; I now realise that focussing on one thing at a time and developing a good routine is key to living well. From meal prep and planning my outfits for the week to daily to-do lists and omni-tasking, it makes the WORLD of a difference!
9. Ditching the baggage
We’ve all collected baggage throughout our lifetimes, however, it’s up to us to choose whether we continue to carry it around and to let it weigh us down or not. Where does it get us anyway?
By the time you’ve hit 36, you’ve hopefully started to throw out that excess baggage you’ve been towing around. I certainly feel so much lighter these days!
10. 36 is the new 26
30 is the new 20, 40 is the new 30, 50 is the new 40 …
Whether you believe it or not, it’s all about keeping young at heart and not letting life drag you down, so smile daily, laugh often, dance like no one’s watching, and act younger than you are. Aside from feeling good, your joy will be contagious.
Side note: the other day I got asked if I still lived at ‘home’ however, I choose to take that as a compliment!
11. It’s all about priorities
Instead of pondering the question ‘Can we have it all’, at the wise ‘old’ age of 36, we should ask ourselves the more practical question ‘Should we be doing it all?’.
There’s no better time to prioritise the important things in life now. What is important to you? What do you value? And what kind of life do you want to be living? Try pulling back to focus on a few things and doing them well rather than overdoing things and juggling too many balls.
At this age, my health, self-care, family and roof over my head ARE my priorities. Gossip, bitching, negativity, overworking, over-stressing and getting drunk every weekend are NOT.
12. Finding your sense of style
By 36, you come into your own sense of style. Be it fashionable or comfortable; it’s all about what makes you feel good in your own skin – stuff what anyone else thinks!
I now embrace my femininity, wear dresses and band shirts, play around with hairstyles, and rock a pair of heels (when I’m not falling over and twisting my ankle, that is…). It’s a weird but wonderful feeling, helped along by developing a thing called confidence.
13. Confidence – it really is sexy
Just as a fine wine grows in-depth and flavour as it ages, so do you – especially in the confidence department.
I’m a late bloomer and used to be as shy as a mouse, but as I get older, my confidence only grows. It certainly helps that my anxiety isn’t as bad as it used to be. Feeling calm does wonders for confidence! These days I walk taller, do what I want, wear what I want, express my opinion back to myself and say NO. It feels AMAZING. Confidence is the bomb. It is sexy. And it is liberating.
What about you? How has your confidence changed as you’ve grown older?
It’s so much fun reminiscing about old tunes, drinking a few wines over old photos, taking the piss out of your old style (or lack thereof), singing songs, and, best of all, laughing. Do it!
15. You are courageous
Life takes courage, which is the courage you have at age 36.
Courage to push through the hard times, the failures and the hiccups. Courage to succeed and not to run in the other direction. And courage to change or to stay as we are when others want us to change.
16. Your health
No matter the state of your health, you know by now it’s important. But, I know first-hand how easy it is to compromise it.
Let me tell you; it’s never too late to start doing something about your health. Start small. Eat a healthy meal. Go for a 10-minute walk a few times a week. Try meditating. Use turning 36 as your motivation.
Contentment. It’s a beautiful thing. However, the mere mention of the ‘C’ word was used to strike the fear of god in me!
Today, I love my home, dog, man and family. I even like my hometown, something I have spent what seems like a lifetime trying to escape. I also prefer the comfort of my home over hitting the pubs and clubs. The perfect evening for me is an evening on the couch with my man, my dog, a good movie and some chocolate.
18. Belly laughs
There are times to be serious, but silliness should play an equally important role in your life. I love nothing more than letting my hair down, acting like a big kid and having a good belly laugh with friends and family.
19. Embracing ageing
Instead of fighting getting older, embrace it. After all, those fine lines are the tracks of a life lived, so why erase them?
In regards to wrinkles, they are coming on, which was one of the reasons for donning a fringe over the last few years. I’m still holding firm on my anti-cosmetic surgery stance, however. It could change, but at this time in my life, there is no way in hell any botox is getting injected into this body of mine. The white hairs, though. Those I struggle with. At the rate I’m going, I’m gonna be renaming my blog ‘reflections from a white-haired lady’ by the time I’m 38. And so I will continue to colour my hair until I choose to stop, whenever possible!
20. Slowing down
Slow living. It’s a thing.
Slow Living means structuring your life around meaning and fulfillment. Similar to ‘voluntary simplicity‘ and ‘downshifting,’ it emphasizes a less-is-more approach, focusing on the quality of your life…Beth Meredith and Eric Storm
As a chronic multitasker, slowing down for me has been a real challenge. I’ve been so used to living life on the go, packing it full of stuff, and being an anxious mess. However, since I’ve started to live slower, I seem to be much more focused, getting through my to-do list so much quicker and doing things BETTER, and I’m less stressed.
I know you’re not ‘meant’ to slow down until you’re a whole lot older than 36; however, try doing it now because it is so beneficial – especially in a world that is increasingly fast-paced!
If you’re struggling with the thought of turning 36, take some time to write your own gratitude list of things you’ve learned and how far you’ve come since you were little. Big or small, take the time to celebrate!