Your Fourth Decade – Ages 30-39

Dad gives little girl a piggy-back ride outdoors surrounded by trees.

How did you spend your thirties? For many, child-rearing was part of the equation.

By Maureen Santini © Copyright 2018-2019. All Rights Reserved.

If you are following the decade-by-decade method, you are well on your way after writing about your first, second and third decades. If you’re new to this website, review posts that set forth the reasons you should strongly consider writing your life story for posterity.  

Let’s start writing about your fourth decade of life, which spans ages 30 to 39. Begin with the year of your thirtieth birthday. If you were born in 1950, for instance, your fourth decade began in 1980.

Just start writing or, if you prefer, open with a general statement summing up your situation as you left your twenties and entered your thirties. For instance, “I was still searching for my life’s partner and my work path.” Or, “I married and had children young and was feeling restless.” Or, “I was on a high-powered career path with no time for distractions.” Or, “I was happier than ever.” Whatever the situation, summarize the best you can.

Take a moment to jot down the highs and lows of each year or two in your thirties. Mention things that were happening in your life, your work and your family. Mention events occurring in your city, state, nation or the world if any had a major influence on your life at the time.

Write Down Specifics

After summarizing, delve into specific details of the topics in your summary statement. Write as much as you can remember. Create a full portrait of your life at the time.

In addition to the narrative, write down basic factual information in such categories as:


List the places you lived in your thirties including street addresses, town, state, country, and type of residence. Identify the people you were living with, if any, and your relationship to them.


List the places you worked in your thirties. Name the companies or organizations, add the addresses, job titles and duties, and anything else relevant about these jobs.


Identify the main people in your life during your thirties including specific family members, friends, spouses, and significant others. How did these relationships change from the beginning of the decade to the end?

If you were married with children, write in detail about your family life, including the challenges and rewards of child raising and, if relevant, how parenting changed you and your views on life.

Skills, Hobbies, Interests

List in detail activities that occupied the majority of your time such as reading, sports, cooking, politics, movies, crafts, religion, traveling, and education. How did your interests and obligations change from the beginning of the decade to the end?

Health and Welfare

Characterize your physical, mental and emotional challenges in your thirties. Address the health and medical situation of your friends and family, if relevant.

Describe your attitude toward ambitions or dreams you had when younger. Did you defer ambitions? Did you fulfill any of them? Did your dreams and ambitions change? Did you find different passions? Were you satisfied with your life at the end of your thirties or seeking answers?

Future Outlook

Describe the expectations you had for your life and family at the start of the decade and whether they materialized or changed during the decade. 


These questions are a general guide. Capture the essence of your life and lifestyle during this decade by adding information about any topic, person or event that was central to your life during this time.

Well done! Next up: your Fifth Decade.

Tell us about your writing experience in the “comments” section of this website. Please share these posts to encourage others to write their stories.

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