15 things only successful people know before turning 30

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Life has many life lessons to learn. Some lessons are learned quickly, while others are more difficult.

But regardless of how important a lesson is, there are 15 life lessons that everyone should know by the time they’re 30.

After all, your 30s are when things start happening in life.

Some people finally work out what career they want to do.

Others get married and settle down in a house in the woods.

And some people find out who they really are and begin living a life that is true to themselves

Let’s go over the 15 things that you really should know by the time you’re 30.

1. You must know what you stand for

You’ve probably experienced a lot in your 20s, and through those experiences, you’ve managed to learn a lot about who you are and what you stand for.

And now your 30s are your time to stand for something and move forward in your life.

Understanding our own personal values allows us to know what’s worth spending time on and what isn’t.

We each have our own set of personal values.

These can range from family and friendships to honesty and humility.

The key point here is that if you’re clear on what’s important to you, then you’re likely to be successful in your 30s because you’re old enough to shift momentum in your favor. Being clear is a powerful skill that makes achieving success a lot easier.

Successful people channel their resources towards a small number of tasks to engender a better outcome.

In Morten T. Hansen’s, From Great at Work: How Top Performers Do Less, Work Better, and Achieve More, he described how top performers focus on a small number of tasks to produce high-quality work:

“Once they had focused on a few priorities, they obsessed over those tasks to produce quality work. That extreme dedication to their priorities created extraordinary results. Top performers did less and more: less volume of activities, more concentrated effort.”

So if you’re clear on your priorities and values, your 30s will be the time that you pave the path to success.

2. You can do whatever you put your mind to

By the time you’re 30, you should understand that with hard work and persistence, you can achieve anything you put your mind to.

There is no magic or luck involved. If you work hard and consistently improve, then you’ll eventually get to where you want to go.

Sometimes it’s going to be difficult and you’ll have to learn new ways of doing things, but you’re more than capable when you’re an adult.

However, no matter how motivated you are, few of us are really achieving our true potential in life.

If you want an insight into exactly what you can do to reach your potential, I recommend taking this 3-minute quiz by professional life coach Jeanette Brown.

I recently took it myself and it helped me pinpoint exactly what was holding me back in life, and what I needed to do to live the life I’ve always wanted.

Check out this excellent quiz here.

3. There is always something to learn

It’s impossible to know everything. And it’s a boring life if you think that you do.

Once you’re 30, it’s imperative to understand that learning never stops.

Mistakes are inevitable, and you’ll only grow in life if you’re able to make those mistakes and learn from them.

Anyone that thinks they’re a “know-it-all” is never growing because they think there’s nothing to learn.

Don’t be that person. Life is full of opportunities to improve yourself and learn new things.

4. Don’t tolerate bullies and let ourselves be victimized

Bullies aren’t just in grade school, unfortunately, they’re all around us.

They pop up in our work life and even in our relationships and daily interactions.

Bullies try to push us down and victimize us, taking advantage of kind people’s instincts to try to be agreeable and understanding.

This can often lead to trauma coming back up from when we’re younger as well.

The solution is to stand up to bullies. You’re 30 now and they don’t deserve a second of your time.

Call them out, boycott them and avoid them if possible.  They’re useless, sad people.

The only benefit of bullies, really, is to let them teach you patience and to believe in yourself and not be overly reactive.

5. Take care of your physical health

One of the most common regrets people have at the end of their life is not taking better care of their physical health.

Physical health seems like no big deal, until it goes wrong.

Letting your weight, health and wellbeing slide is a big mistake and many people really regret it.

It can also make the final years of your life a real pain in the ass if you’re physically unhealthy.

To be fair, not everything is in our control.

But now that you’re an adult, you can make sure to get plenty of exercise, watch your diet and sleep well.

This will maximize your possibility of being as healthy as you can.

6. Start saving

Another big practical consideration that you want to avoid in your 30s is being financially broke.

The solution is to start saving early and make wise financial decisions.

Avoid risky investments, gambling and unhealthy behaviors like excessive smoking and drinking, which also suck up huge amounts of money.

7. If you want to be successful, you need to hang around with the right people

Sure, you might have had some fun in your 20s and hung out with the wrong types of people, but it’s time to mature and lift yourself up in your 30s.

And that means hanging out with positive and successful people. People who don’t bring you down and instead, encourage you to achieve your goals.

As the great quote from Jim Rohn says:

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”

8. Your habits move you forward in life

Time is our most precious resource. It was Annie Dillard that wrote, “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives”.

If we aren’t allocating the time and energy needed to achieve a certain goal, it will never be fulfilled.

The benefit of having an organized system is that it allows all the focus to be placed on the work itself.

According to James Clear, author of Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, all big things come from small beginnings, and it’s really your habits every day that determines where you’re going:

“All big things come from small beginnings. The seed of every habit is a single, tiny decision. But as that decision is repeated, a habit sprouts and grows stronger. Roots entrench themselves and branches grow. The task of breaking a bad habit is like uprooting a powerful oak within us. And the task of building a good habit is like cultivating a delicate flower one day at a time.”

So by the time you’re 30, you need to have implemented good habits in your life that get you closer to your goals. You’re an adult now, so there’s no reason to party every night of the week. You need to make small gains every day to achieve what you want to achieve in life.

9. You need to be courageous

Courage has nothing to do with the absence of fear. In fact, we all experience fear, but successful people take action even when they are fearful.

If you want to be successful in your 30s, you need to not give up easily. You’re an adult now so it’s important to continue even when it gets difficult.

Courageous people are an inspiration to others because they motivate them to take action for things we might be scared about.

In fact, in some ways being an honest and good person can take courage. After all, it takes courage to act with integrity.

10. It doesn’t take magic to be successful

It doesn’t take being a magician to make money. If you want to be successful, then all it takes is a bit of hard work and persistence.

You don’t need to be a genius or extremely smart to be successful.

You just need to be rational, have a plan, and work hard to implement it.

11. At some point you have to look after yourself

It’s great to be selfless, but by the time you’re 30, you need to also look after yourself if you want to get ahead in life.

Your 30s are an important time in life. Your career is becoming established, you’re making big strides in life and you’re ready to achieve your goals.

At some point, you need to focus on your own goals and work on yourself.

And once you become successful, you’ll be able to help others more.

12. You are responsible for every action you take in life

By the time you’ve hit 30, you’re no longer a kid anymore. You’re an adult now and you need to take responsibility for all your actions.

It’s the easy way out to blame others for everything that is going wrong in your life.

But it doesn’t get you anywhere. In fact, all it does is develop a victim mindset.

Nobody likes someone who acts like a victim.

Take responsibility for your life and work hard towards your goals.

13. The universe is not out to get you

Sometimes it’s easy to think that everyone is out to get you. All the bad things happen to you and only you and there is never you can do about it.

But that’s not true. The universe isn’t out to get you.

The human mind loves to find patterns and meaning in everything.

But just because something bad happens to you doesn’t mean that the universe is out to get out.

It’s just random. The most important you can do is to take responsibility for your life and try your best.

If you do that from the time you’re 30, then you’ll be well on your way to success.

14. There’s no benefit to holding onto grudges

It’s common to hold onto grudges, but does it really get you anywhere in life?

All you’re doing is holding onto negative emotions which might affect you down the line.

It’s better to forgive and move on with your life. Free yourself from negativity and focus on what’s important.

Yes, if someone is done something bad to you, you should learn from the experience and avoid getting in the same situation again.

But there’s no benefit in causing yourself the stress and holding onto that anger when it really isn’t necessary.

15. Don’t compare yourself to others

It’s natural for us to care about what other people think.

But when you’re 30, it’s time to realize that you don’t need to compare yourself excessively. There is no benefit.

A mature person understands that life is complex and circumstances are different for everyone, so it’s impossible to accurately and fairly compare yourself.

They also realize that they’ll never understand what someone else’s life is really like behind the curtains.

The only person a successful person compares themselves to is their past self.

This is how they’re able to improve, and how they avoid the self-deprecating emotions that come from comparing.

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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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