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6 Simple Life Thoughts From a 32-Year-Old

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Personal

This year I turned 32.

And while I kept thinking about my age, I didn’t feel as if I’m old or that I suddenly became wiser. I realized that I don’t actually care about this number. I’m 32, and that’s it.

On my birthday, somebody asked me how I feel, to which I replied with one simple word: upward. It’s because I’m feeling that things are moving up.

Nevertheless, I found myself in a place where I can start figuring out what’s really a priority and what’s not. And I’m not saying this only from a professional point of view. I’m saying this from my own point of view. My life’s point of view.

This lesson is not finished yet, and I believe it won’t be over even after I die.

Until then, I’m looking back at my life and also checking the notes on my phone, where sometimes I write down ideas, experiences, and thoughts I have at different times. And if you are interested, you can read the other articles I wrote when I turned [30] and [31] years old.

These are the six thoughts that I was thinking and living while I turned 32.

1. I still challenge myself

This year was (and still is) an extremely challenging year for me. I challenged myself two years ago when I started my podcast. Then, at the end of 2018, I was thinking of getting to the next level of podcasting, so I began helping others launch and produce their podcasts.

But that wasn’t enough for me.

Luckily for me, a new challenge came around. Dragos Stanca asked me if I want to speak at one of the biggest events for the digital marketing industry in CEE, so I obviously accepted. This was definitely not an easy challenge.

Why?

Because I had to create my presentation in English and also to present it in English. And I bet you know that talking in English is not as easy as writing in English, especially when you don’t have that much experience. So I accepted this challenge, and I made it. It was like a milestone for me, and now, when I look back at this, I couldn’t be prouder of myself.

 

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Also, I made another challenge with myself. To turn my Romanian podcast into a bilingual podcast. As a result, I started interviewing professionals that don’t speak my native language.

So here I am today, doing more things than I thought I could ever do. It wasn’t, and it’s still not easy, but it makes me think about what else I can start that can help me become a better professional or even a better human being.

2. Don’t steal their time if you want to have “me” time

Because I’m a dad to a one-year-old daughter, I work full-time for a great company and have a few side projects, I often find myself in that position where I want to do everything in a small amount of time. And, as the Bible says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity…”, I have to learn that I can steal “that time” from “that activity.” It means that when I’m working, I have to focus on my work, I have to make the best of me, to make the best decisions, to make the best of my work, and to help my team do their job as best as they can.

But when I’m with my family, I have to be there, with my family, present. I have to actively engage with them, talk to them, listen to them, and play together. This means that I have to put down the phone and close the laptop. I can’t steal their time so that I can do other activities.

If I want to do more things, then I’d have to use my time. This means that if I want to work on my side projects, I have to wake up earlier and focus on that project. If I want to do an interview, I have to find the right time that does not collide with my work and my family.

Stealing time is oftentimes the easiest thing we can do because we believe we can give it back someday. But the truth is, when you steal time, you won’t be getting it back anymore.

3. In the process, there is no right or wrong

We are all in the process. A process of becoming better professionals, better parents, better human beings. If we look at our daily lives, we will see that we don’t have checkpoints we need to mark, and everything is fine. We need to view our days as a process.

In this process, there is no right and or wrong. In the process, there is only the experience we accumulate in our life.

I believe that I’m in a process every single day. And if I’m wrong during this process about something, I will look at it as an experience that I need to learn from for the next step I have to make.

Being in the process is a mindset, and I’m working on reminding myself about it every day.

4. I’m getting my hands dirty with my side projects

I respect every person who gets their hands dirty doing the work. Today, we are living in a world where you can do almost everything you want, and you can learn everything you want.

Just a few months ago, I talked to a 19-year-old guy who started vlogging at 12, and now he’s one of the most popular YouTubers in his country. Moreover, he started a band and doing concerts that are sold out every single time. This young and successful guy told me this one thing: the internet is like a library. You can learn everything you want. But this depends only on you.

So I started thinking of getting my hands dirty with the stuff I was afraid or didn’t want to do. That’s why I started editing my own podcasts. That’s why I downloaded TikTok to see what’s there and what’s with all the hype around this social network.

Getting your hands dirty will open you up to more opportunities to learn from and experience.

5. You don’t have to finish what you started

We were taught that when we start something, we better finish it. I tend to agree with this. But there are also moments and projects in our life when it’s not necessary to finish what we started.

 

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For example, when I start reading a book and after a few pages, I don’t like it, then I will leave it and choose another one. This also applies to movies I’m watching. If I don’t enjoy the first few minutes, then I will close it and move to another one. I simply don’t want to waste my time with stuff I don’t like it or just for the sake of “wait because it gets better later.

And this goes for projects as well. We can get very excited when it comes to starting new projects, even if we talk about blogs, podcasts, businesses, or any other side projects.

The launch turns out to be awesome, and everyone gives you a round of applause, and they appreciate the work you’ve put in.

But then, you start working on that project, you love it, and one day, you suddenly notice a cloud over your project. Nobody is applauding you anymore, and you are alone with your project. What do you do? If you like it, you continue. If you enjoy it, you continue. Despite what others say. But if life happens and you can’t continue, then simply don’t. Just be transparent and say, “Hey, this was it. I have to stop this. Will see where this will go.” and that’s it.

6. Time can be a good test for life and work

This test can be applied in almost every part of your life. Even if we talk about friendships, jobs, relationships, or projects. You know that saying: Time will tell. And in most cases, time will tell you if somebody is genuinely your friend or not.

But at the same time, you can do your best to build something of value. I read this in Ryan Holiday’s book called “Perennial Seller.” That’s a book about projects that stand the test of time. Even if it’s a book about marketing and business, we can all learn something about this topic.

So I’m using this time test two areas of my life: professional and personal.

Personal – when I met a new person, and we start talking and form a new relationship, I don’t want to get very excited about it. As I already wrote in my article when I turned 30, “let people disappoint you.” So I know I will be disappointed by them because we are humans and we can’t be in a perfect relationship with perfect human beings. But I will let time tell me if meeting with that person, building a relationship with that person will add meaning to my life.

Professional – everything I try to build for my work, I want to be an evergreen content that can be relevant in six months or even six years from now. “Will this be relevant tomorrow?”. That’s my question behind every project I’m working on. And sometimes, even I don’t know the answer, but I have a clue what it may be.

See you next year.

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Robert Katai

Content Marketing Strategist

"Content isn’t king. Usefulness is. Robert does this in the online marketing and social media space with ease."

Ram Castillo

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