32 Thoughts From a 32-Year-Old

Ryan Holiday
8 min readJun 16, 2019

This is the first year I forgot how old I was. Like really forgot and had to do the math, several times, as recently as yesterday morning.

I’m not saying I’m old. That would be a lame joke. It’s just that this is the first year where my age really didn’t matter at all. Because once you have kids, nobody asks anymore. They want to know how old they are. You’re just a firmly established adult now, which after spending almost all of my twenties as the “I can’t believe you’re only _ _” guy, is actually a nice change.

Nevertheless, I think it’s a mistake for people my age to think about how young they are — to think of getting old and dying as something that happens way off in the future. Instead, I prefer Seneca’s observation, the one about how death isn’t this thing that happens once but as something that is happening right now. We are dying everyday, he said, and each second that passes is lost to death. If we can think that way then we can truly live and not take anything for granted.

You can read what I wrote (and what I learned) over the years in the series of posts I’ve done on my birthdays. I think the first one I did was when I turned 20, but here is 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, and 31. As for this year, here are some thoughts I’ve had and lessons that I’ve learned. Maybe they’ll save you some trouble. Or maybe you’ll have to learn them on your own.

-Life is better with less Facebook in it. In January, I changed the password on my personal account and my fan page, handed it over to an assistant and haven’t checked it since. I have one throw away account with no friends, no feed, that belongs to one group I need for work. I don’t think I have missed one thing. I should have done this sooner.

-You work really hard to get money…and then once you have it you spend time worrying whether you’re putting it to work right.

-Marcus Aurelius’s line: To accept it without arrogance, to let it go with indifference. God that’s good. And so hard to do.

-There is something about water, cold fresh water especially. The more time you spend around it, but more importantly, in it, the better. And Texas is very under-rated when it comes to swimming (just check out some of the places on this list)

Ryan Holiday

Bestselling author of ‘Conspiracy,’ ‘Ego is the Enemy’ & ‘The Obstacle Is The Way’ http://amzn.to/24qKRWR