31 Lessons In 31 Years

© Pete Longworth

© Pete Longworth

Today I turn 31. So, in honor of being on this planet one year longer, I've made a list of 31 things I've learned since my last birthday.


1. You can be vulnerable, empathetic, and a leader at the same time

2. It’s healthy to question who you are and feel a need to reinvent yourself

3. Fill your cup before filling anyone else’s—it’s not selfish, it's critical

4. Do something physical every day

5. That being said, health is not only physical—it’s mind, body, and spirit, so be sure to take care of each

6. When a project seems overwhelming, just start by “making it bad.” You can always make it better. But if you don’t start at all, you can’t do anything!  

7. Celebrate the successes of others instead of comparing yourself to them—there’s enough opportunity for everyone in this world

8. When you screw up, take ownership and check your ego at the door

9. The best way to build a habit is to do it every morning, especially when you don’t feel like it

10. “Am I keeping it simple, or am I overcomplicating it?” is a good question to ask yourself constantly

11. You know you stand for something when people disagree with you

12. Replace unreasonable expectations and self-imposed deadlines with grace and patience

13. If you want to make your significant other happy, make yourself happy—it’s an inside job

14. Hire a coach (In the last year, I have hired an executive coach, a creative coach, and a nutrition coach, and it’s forced me to work on things that are critical to my success and happiness)

15. Read as much as you can and remember to venture out of the business aisle

16. Staying up late is no longer cool

17. Begin with the end in mind—think about the legacy you want to leave and adjust your life accordingly

18. Be present—it can wait

19. “Inbox zero” means you aren’t living your life

20. Talk to the person sitting next to you on the plane

21. When your world seems to be crashing down, remember you are developing resilience—the most important skill there is

22. There is power in changing your language from "I" to "we"

23. Say the thing that everyone else is thinking but no one has the courage to say

24. Remember that hurt people hurt people, so love them

25. The best friendships are those without expectations

26. Everyone is right: When you write a book, you will want to write another one (and yes, I’m starting another one)

27. If you want to be a responsible leader, you must care about people AND results

28. Just like you fall in and out of love with yourself and your significant other, you fall in and out of love with your work—it’s normal, and the key is to work hard to keep the spark alive

29. Start each day with gratitude (I think of 10 things I’m thankful for as soon as I open my eyes)

30. Be yourself—nothing less and nothing more

31. It’s okay to go to the spa for 5 hours on a Tuesday (that’s what I’m doing today!)

Big Hugs,