Who I Want to Be in 2030


Dear Future-Vincent,

I often think about you. After all, it’s only normal that I think about who I want to be.

By now, I’m sure you are even more attractive than ever because of course, you are only getting better with age. You handsome devil! Oh, I hope you still say that too! “Handsome devil.”

Are you married? Are you a dad? I know how you were back in 2013, thinking that you’ll never be either because you simply don’t want the responsibilities, but people change.

Do you still read James Altucher’s blog for influence? In fact, that’s where I got the idea for this letter! I wonder if you and 2030 James hang out together. You probably do.

I bet you still watch “Doctor Who.” Have they made a TARDIS yet? If so, why haven’t you gone back to visit me yet? Maybe I’ll see you in 2014 when you think I’m ready. I’ll be waiting, Vincent.

You were right. Arizona seems to have been the change I needed. You really made a lot out of the change and proved your adaptability.

Do you remember the excuses you made before you started Self Stairway? Ha, then you ran out of excuses and had to jump in with both feet. 2013 taught me that making excuses gets you nowhere and that taking the chance can really jumpstart your life.

I wonder if you still have the same philosophy on life. I’m sure you’re 1000x wiser than I am now.

I also hope you keep in touch with the people who taught and influenced you the most. Hell, I hope you’re still looking for mentors all over the place, learning from as many positive influences as you can!

What are you like, Vincent? I am still working on improving myself every day through daily self-reflection. Here are some of the things I hope you’ve fully internalized by 2030; the traits of who I want to be.

Don’t be afraid of being different

Back in 2010 and even earlier than that, you cared a lot about what others thought. You weren’t yourself because you were so scared of not being accepted.

Then you met great mentors, you established strong bonds, and you found that being different is not so bad. You were living life happily and it didn’t matter if you were different.

You learned that being different makes life more interesting and that people are drawn to genuine personalities. Continue to be genuine and be interested in others, because I know you LOVE learning about other people. Most people aren’t like that, so keep being different.

Besides, it’s no fun being a fake. Too many people are fake, not enough people are genuine, and you are the only one out of millions who aren’t afraid of who they really are. Keep at it and remember how to be yourself.

Don’t let your friends go

You’ve got a great, “overpowered” group that you’ve had since 2007. Great friends are hard to find and I hope you send them letters, give them hugs, and visit them often if you aren’t already living with them in 2030.

Your friends determine how you turn out and it’s definitely true that in 2013, I would be nowhere near the person that I am today.

Keep surrounding yourself with great friends, expand your network, and grow the circle. Don’t stop making friends, Vincent. I know how much friendship means to you. Don’t let them go, ever.

Trust and be genuinely interested in others

Maybe the culture is different in 2030, but I’m sure you’re still doing your best to trust others, help strangers, and that you spread happiness through all the little things you do.

You guys probably have fancy hover-cars now, but if not, I hope you give change to the homeless out on the street corners. Most people drive by them because they think those people only want to buy drugs, but you know better than to make assumptions. Besides, now that it is 2030, you’re probably a billionaire or something.

Do you still smile at strangers when there’s eye contact? You know how happy that makes people. I’m sure even people in 2030 feel invisible sometimes and perhaps all it takes is a small “Hello,” to make their day.

Hopefully you are still a good listener because you know how important it is to be a good active listener.

You’re probably an incredibly busy person, Future-Vincent, so I’ll leave you alone now. I really hope if you have a TARDIS then you are getting ready to visit me in 2013. If not, that’s okay. You’re probably out saving the world.

Maybe you’re writing an article on 2030-Self Stairway about what you’d write about to Past-Vincent in 2013.

I hope you’re a greater person than I am and that personal growth never stops. I hope you’re the person who I want to be.

Sincerely yours,



Join the discussion and write some goals down for 2030-You. 

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Vincent Nguyen is the author of Self Stairway and founder of Growth Ninja, a digital marketing agency that specializes in Facebook Ads. Voted "Most Guapo" five years in a row (lost during 6th year to a hand model.)

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37 responses to Who I Want to Be in 2030

  1. Light and humorous, but an important idea nonetheless. It’s vital that we always keep our future selves in mind . . . if we’re not heading in a direction that leads us to become the person we hope to be, then we’d best stop and find a different direction.


    • Very true, Trevor. You’re right, why keep going that direction of it’s not who we want to be? Self-reflection is always important to keep in mind and even more important is to remember who we want to be.

  2. I love your letter, Vincent. So uniquely and genuinely YOU! You have left room for change and growth, and I wish that I was thinking that way back when I was your age (you know, 500 years ago!). 😉

    I know I went through a lull there myself, f few years back, but I like the energy and dedication I now have to a life filled with growth and love. It’s is surely different than the energy I had 20 years ago, but it is a really good different. I don’t bemoan my past but instead use it as a catalyst for change.

    Thank you for sharing.

    • It’s great to be able to compare yourself to former you and see how much you’ve grown! I can do the same and it’s great. You should be worried if that’s not the case.

      The past is the past and there’s nothing we can do about it, but that’s okay. 20 years ago is gone and present-Tammy is only getting better!

  3. Vincent, this is fantastic! It will be quite interesting to pull this post out in a few years and see how your life has changed and moved toward some of these goals. Writing these goals down will help you keep focused on your long-term vision, even on the days in which the passion wanes a bit.

    • Hi, Chris!

      I rarely ever write down my goals because I like keeping it in my head. On occasion, I write it into my Moleskine journal but as of late, I’ve been hesitant.

      This is really the first time in a while since I’ve really wrote down a goal or mindmap of who I want me to be. It’s interesting and I’m sure this list could have gotten very extensive, but steps at a time!

  4. A fun post to read. Playful and quick-paced! Being different has made all the difference for me. I embraced it, fell in love with it and the people who mattered to me did too. Nothin’ like it, man.

  5. I really enjoyed reading this, well done.

    To be honest, I never look that far into the future, because – I just can’t. That’s what I love about life, there’s so many variables, so many paths to take. We change constantly.

    Of course there’s outlines of where I’d like to be, for example I’d like to have a family, for sure. I’d really like to be somewhere else in the world than where I’m living now in 2030, but as for the other stuff? I’m not sure.

    Again, great post. Thanks heaps!

    • True, Sam! I don’t think I had it too narrowed down and the improvements I hoped for myself were broad enough.

      It’s more of a list of things I’m currently working on because there are TONS of things I notice could be a lot better.

  6. I was entertained. I like this time capsule letter to yourself. I may have to do this too. Hmm, let me think about what I want to address. Thank you for the seed.

    The part where it mentions the homeless caught my eye. Many of the people I think you’re referring to are house-less more so than home-less. Semantics maybe, if you look up what “home” means, it is a place you live, not necessarily a building structure. Oh, perhaps that’s the judgement part many people make — associating a home with possessions in the form of tangible goods.

    • Do it! I drew inspiration for this idea from James, no reason you can’t draw it from me.

      Interesting distinction. I wasn’t aware of the differences until now and I thank you for clearing that up. That part of my letter was actually a reference to an article I wrote on trust. Most of this article are references actually. I’m hoping in 2030 if I go back to read this, I can smile and understand each one.

  7. That was a very personal article. Thanks for sharing. I’m considering doing this now. I need a medium to post it…any takers??

  8. This was a lot of fun to read – love the idea. Keep being different, keep creating your art – and don’t let what others think ever stop you.

    • I don’t let it stop me, but it definitely does have minor influences. When there are differences between points of view or interests, there will always be more friction. The hard part is reminding myself most people are okay with that and appreciate genuineness.

  9. Just awesome, Vincent. In 2030 I’ll be 71 years old. I hope I get to see where your journey has taken you then, because you have chosen a powerful road.


    • A powerful road indeed, Laurie! I think life is much more exciting when we take the powerful road. I can’t wait to see where I am in 2030. You can check up on me in the future to make sure I hit my targets.

  10. Beautifully written, Vincent. Great insight to how your friends shape who you are; we must remember that we are always in the context of someone else. Reminds me of Donne’s “No man is an island”…

  11. 10,000,000 visits a week! Wow! I was glad to read a more humble perspective as I read through your letter. Good stuff.

    • Looks like you either read the letter through an RSS reader or through the email. 🙂 I actually removed that part of the intro because I felt it didn’t add anything to the letter.

      Thanks for stopping by, Dan!

  12. You have already come a long way, Vincent. In one day, 11 people took the time to comment on your article. You really are building a group of people who relate to your view of life.

    I actually look at my life from another direction (instead of looking to the future from today). I have a photo of myself when I was two years old. It is a beautiful photo of kid with a smile of true innocence and a face that says “this is so great being alive and having a mom and dad who love me.” The kid in the picture is looking directly into the camera, so that when I look at that photo it is like he is looking right into my eyes. It is a photo of a kid who has at least 64 years ahead of him to do good things or bad things… who might use his time on earth wisely or who might waste the priceless gift of being a living human being.

    When I look at that photo I ask myself: “have I become the person that this little innocent boy deserves? Have I used the gift of life wisely?” And more importantly, I ask myself “Would this little boy be proud of the person I became?”

    The results are not in yet. I probably have a few more years to become a better person. It has been a tough life with tough decisions. That little boy deserved more than I gave him. Perhaps your article, Vincent, will help me spend my future years making better decisions about being a better person. It is never too late to say “Today, my new life begins.”

    • That is a VERY interesting way of “time-traveling,” Bob. I like the idea of looking back into time to see if your past self would be proud. I am confident when I say you’ve probably made him very proud. Just the conscious thought of trying to please your past self’s expectations of you is enough to show that you care.

      I doubt that there are no results to prove you’ve lived a great life worth traveling back in time to boast about, Bob. From what I know of you, you’re a person who truly cherishes relationships with others and that is a SUPERPOWER. Not many people genuinely love others.

  13. Great letter Vincent! It’s about doing what we can today so we can become the person we want to be in the future. You have a great mindset!

  14. First off, I’m a major Doctor Who fan too so it’s nice to meet you, Vincent! Who is your favorite Doctor? I wish 9 would have gotten at least more season as I thought he was quite compelling. /Whovian-ness

    It’s so crazy for me to think about life that far in advance. I don’t even know what I would write but I like the idea of trying. I’m going to be working on writing up my goals and such for the rest of the night so this will be a good extension of what I’m doing.

    What was the most challenging part of the letter to write?

    • Awesome! It’s nice to meet a fellow Whovian, Jeff. My favorite is 11. Our personalities and mannerisms have similarities, so perhaps that’s what makes me favor 11 over the others. 🙂

      I liked 9 as well, but I don’t know because I never felt drawn to season 1. When I convert people to Doctor Who I always recommend viewing seasons 5-7, then 2-6, and 1 last. Everyone who ignored my advice immediately was turned off by the first episode until they went to season five.

      It’s difficult for sure, but it’s fun! Awesome, man. You got to let me know once you get that done!

      Truthfully, it is easier than you would think. Writing to yourself allows you to be completely genuine and open, something that is a lot harder to do with an “agenda.” Just write with your personal voice and exactly the way you would hold a conversation with another person or when you talk to yourself! The words will naturally flow if you are completely honest with your writing. Best of luck!

  15. A humorous, light, yet profound post. This is awesome, Vincent! You gained another follower – I’ll keep checking back for more. More power!

  16. Amazing and thank you for sharing! I accidentally, nope I regress, it was the right timing to discover your site. I was encouraged and inspired, yes change should be embraced and can be positive and healthy.

  17. That was a great read, Vincent! Light, funny but a brilliant story behind it. It’d be depressing if in 17 years time you couldn’t see a change in yourself, but I think you’ve got that growth part nailed! It fascinates me as to what will come in the next few decades, to think that I’ve only been around for 17 years is incredible, there’s so much to come, do, create, change!

    Again, a lovely read, have a brilliant day!

    • It would be very depressing, Nick! 17 years is a huge amount of time.

      So this post was pretty timely for the both of us because this like a checkup on how we’re doing as we’re halfway there.

      Thanks, Nick. Hope you have a good one too!

  18. I love your letter, Vincent. It’s very personal, light and funny. I certainly hope they’ve invented the TARDIS by 2030. Although I’m not holding my breath. I’m still waiting for flying cars that Back to the Future promised would be here by now.

    So the next step would be to put this in a time capsule and wait until 2030 to read it again. That’s a strange thought to read something to yourself so far into the future. I think it’s weird to read something I’ve written only a few years ago.

    • I’d much rather have the TARDIS than flying cars, but that’s just me! 🙂 Hell, if we had the TARDIS, we could jump into the time where we do have flying cars! Boom!

      Oh Self Stairway is definitely going to be around in 2030. I’ll be sure to remember to check it on New Years Day as I sit in the offices of Google (as CEO.) I’ll even give myself a self high-five.

      Haha it is going to be weird for sure, but it’ll be a great smile even one year from now. The changes are going to be huge!

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