3 Major Lessons I Learned In My 31st Year
On Sunday, I turned 32. I really can’t believe it! It’s funny—I may look different, but in many ways, I feel exactly the same as I did five or even ten years ago.
I’m usually very picky about how I decide to celebrate my own birthday. I’m one of those girls who likes to make the most out of every birthday, and I’m not ashamed of it!
For my 30th birthday, to truly ring in the occasion with one of my best friends (who’s two weeks apart from me), Ryan and I gathered 15 of our dearest friends from across the country and took over Las Vegas as if we were celebrating my 21st. (Although the aftereffects definitely felt different at 30 compared to 21!). It was an incredibly special weekend.
Last year for my 31st, we went on a casual bar crawl down Greenwich Avenue that ended up turning into an all-day and night mimosa fest.
So yeah, I’m a really healthy person. But I also enjoy a good party and am not shy about how much I love to have a good time. (A lot of gals in the “health” field hide the fact that they like to dance, drink, and partake in the occasional poor decision-making that tends to happen after a night out. I’m not one of them:).
This year…well, this year is quite different. I’ve been very quiet on social media and my blog for reasons I will disclose in the very near future, and this birthday was definitely more low-key.
Every year, Ryan and I go to Blue Hill at Stone Barns to celebrate my birthday, so we spent Friday evening eating the most delicious food at one of my favorite restaurants. (If you guys are locals, you need to go here for a special occasion!).
I spent the rest of the weekend in New York City doing trainings with my new yoga studio, CorePower Yoga. We’re opening May 13th, and I better see you in class!
The past few years have been full of adventure, so it was nice to take it easy.
Aside from the celebrations themselves, there’s the many lessons I’ve learned between each birthday. And 31 sure taught me a lot.
Honestly, as much as I value every year, 31 was an especially tough one and I’m excited to turn a new leaf. I thought I would share my three most valuable lessons with you, incase you find yourself where I was throughout this past year.
1. Your path is completely unique. Create your own rules and allow your intuition lead the way.
I’m no stranger to doing things differently. I’ve lived my life according to my own rules, but for some reason in the past several years, I was trying to “fit in” more than I was trying to “fit out,” especially in my business.
That led to two program launches for Food or Fiction, my online group nutrition program for women—which I really did enjoy doing—but at the end of the day, I realized the way I was going about the work was not bringing me joy.
In an effort to follow my heart, I essentially “quit” my business, and left amandahayesmorgan.com behind to pursue healthywifestyle.com. I’ve loved every part of this journey, and have found fun again in my business life.
I also decided being online and behind a computer 24/7 was not working for me as a human being. I love writing to you, but I need more. I crave connection and interaction outside of comments, emails, and Skype sessions.
I had been toying with the concept of bringing a new type of yoga to my community for years. After a few things happened through synchronicity, I decided to pursue a yoga sculpt teaching training in San Diego this past January.
I put in months of hard work, and was hired to teach at CorePower Yoga in NYC as a result. I am so thrilled about this, and am confident for the first time in years that I’m exactly where I need to be in my business life.
Comparing myself to others was sucking the life out of me (for the majority of 2015 and 2016), and I vowed to make a very conscious effort to work on this in 2017. I wish I could say it would never happen again, but that’s unrealistic. What I can do is acknowledge when it’s happening, and remind myself that my path is unique and I’m unique, and therefore my path kicks ass and I don’t need to be like anyone else in any way.
2. Your financial status does not define your self-worth.
When I was in the stage of trying to “fit in,” I was also trying to fit in financially.
Money has never been something that’s motivated my career. I’ve always done the work I’ve loved to do because it felt good to my soul. I haven’t been in a corporate job since I was 23 years old, simply because my heart desired to do something different that I knew would impact the greater good.
I would’ve seen great success financially had I stayed in my job back at 23 in New York City, but I chose to pursue my dreams in San Diego with $4,000 in my pocket and not one clue of what I was going to do next. (I had serious balls back then, apparently!). Financially, it didn’t really start paying off until my late 20’s, but mentally, I knew I was doing something right.
Until 28 years-old, the most I’d ever had in my bank account at one time was $10,000. And I’m not ashamed of it, because I never cared. I had everything I needed.
For some reason, towards the end of 2015 and into 2016, I started caring about how much money I was making. For me, it’s always been about my clients and my impact, and not about the money.
In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a whole “coaching” empire that’s evolved in the past five years. Women have built six and seven figure businesses off of Facebook ads alone. I allowed the competition that I felt among those women to get the best of me.
For most of 2016, I found myself constantly disappointed that I couldn’t keep up. It was mentally and physically exhausting for both my husband and myself. Ryan had to watch me go through this knowing that it was a necessary part of my growth as a business owner and human being. A big thank you to him, and to my astrologer Jenn Racioppi for helping me see the other side.
One day, a flip switched. I started caring less about the numbers and more about the people. (I always cared about the people and my clients, but placed even more emphasis on this than ever before).
I remembered what I had already known my entire life; a motto that’s been engrained in me since a young age…
Money does not define your self worth.
What does define your self worth is your happiness, combined with how you treat yourself, and how you treat others. This is so very important, because how you define your self worth influences your thoughts and beliefs, your actions, and your behaviors.
I learned to define my own success, and am always trying to focus my thoughts around what I already have, rather than what I “think” I need.
I’m loving the new community that’s being creating around Healthy Wifestyle. Things immediately shifted when I launched this website, and opportunities came flying in within the first few months. I know that because my heart is in the right place, doors are going to keep on opening.
3. Life is about the little things.
Ryan and I do this thing every now and then when something happens (like we’re Netflixing on the couch and snuggling on a rainy day) and we look at each other and one says…
“It’s about the little things.”
And the other follows with…
“There’s nothing bigger.”
I guess you could call it one of our “mantras”. It’s easy to get caught up in always wanting more, as you just witnessed from my personal story.
But what do we really need?
The little things are what make life go round. Little things like…
Kissing your partner every night before bed, no exceptions.
Cooking breakfast for one another on a random morning.
Opening the door for a stranger who’s not expecting it. (I do this a lot in NYC).
Giving a waiter a bigger tip than normal if it feels like he/she’s having a rough day.
Bringing home flowers to brighten up your own day, or someone else’s.
Laughing incessantly over silly movies that never get old. (Ours is Couples Retreat).
Calling an old friend you think of constantly but haven’t spoken to in a while.
You get my point.
We’ve become so focused on the “big” things—the money, the job, the fancy possessions we desire to accumulate—that we’re missing the entire point of life.
Ryan reminded me of this constantly when I was going through my rough patch. There’s nothing bigger than the little things that matter the most. And since all of this hit home for me (around October of 2016), I’ve felt like my old self again and haven’t looked back.
Hopefully you can learn a little something from my lessons. I so enjoyed writing this post and would love to hear from you in the comments…
Can you relate to what I shared? Any big lessons you’ve learned in your early 30’s? I’d love to hear them all!