I guess I am officially almost old tomorrow. With one year left until the big three oh hits, I decided that this is a good of a time as any to make a few promises to myself.

OK, so let’s get past the awkwardness of how absolutely terrifying it feels to almost be thirty. Luckily I have one year from tomorrow to make peace with the fact that I will no longer be a twenty-something creative with a tendency to follow her heart more often than her head. Now I’m grown up, and I guess that means embracing everything that being a grown up means.

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I think I’ve got the basics down pat; say please and thank you, look people in the eye when you shake hands, don’t chew with your mouth open, shower daily. That’s pretty much it, right? Phew, I was starting to worry.

But when it comes to the nitty-gritty, the bigger picture stuff of being a grown up, I think I need to take this last year of being almost old quite seriously. I know that I have a lot of growing up to do, but I also know that I will never quite make it there, and I am OK with that. Passion, desire for experience, emotion and hunger for knowledge will always keep me who I am. But here are some things on my “grown up” to-do list for my last year as a twenty year old:

1. Put friends and family first
Most people would describe me as a family-first person. And I am – my friends and family are everything to me. But the last two years I have let stress, work and (at the end of the day) stupid, pointless things snatch the top spots of my importance list. Trust me when I say; that it’s not worth it. Here is to making time for friends and family, and living what you’re otherwise preaching to others.

2. Switch off more
With a job like this and a second life on the internet, there really is no switch off time. Not because it’s not possible, but because I don’t let myself. Nothing is so important that it can’t wait until the morning, and besides, time away from the screen is the time I am most creative. Do it more.

3. Prioritise
I am terrible, terrible at prioritising. I make lists and everything seems equally important – and there is no way anyone could possibly get to it all, but I try to be super human, and nine times out of ten I just end up disappointing myself. Tick off one clear task a day, the rest is bonus. Work hard, but don’t work more. Work smarter.

4. Be normal
Schedule in fun time. Get enough sleep. Go out and get drunk once in a while. Sleep in the next day. Take a dance class. Learn a language. Treat ‘you’ time seriously and protect it like an important business meeting – just beacause your work colleague is pissed they couldn’t reach you at 11pm on a Thursday doesn’t mean that you’re not entitled to a normal life. Work will go away at some point. And then what are you left with? It will also increase your own creativity and productivity – just you try it and see.

5. Everything will be awesome, if you want it to
It’s easy to take life for granted. Make the most of everyday. If fresh flowers make you happy – buy them. If you want to wear that fancy dress to work though it’s completely inappropriate – wear it. If there is no apparent reason to drink champagne but you feel like it – drink it. If you have a gut feeling about something – run with it.

You only live once.

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PS – My amazing tulips are from freshflowers.com.au – I’m a lucky girl.