The impact of Divorce plus an Empty Nest can certainly be challenging. I’ve experienced both as I’m sure many of you have. As my guest, in my Ageing Well, Living Well series, Allison from Start A Simple Life, shares her story of how she created a new life at 47 a life where both mental and physical health plus core values were a priority.
Living Well after the Marriage and Kids are gone
I just travelled 550 miles from California. We unloaded half the moving truck and now it lumbered down the Las Vegas suburb street, away from my baby. My youngest and last child living with me would now be 100 miles away and on his own.
Sadness rushed over me yet I also felt the weight of motherhood lift just slightly. I was a free woman. No husband and no kids living with me.
What do I do with all this time I now have?
I was 47 and knew I had some heavy choices ahead of me yet no matter what I did going forward I needed to keep myself healthy – physically and mentally.
This was just one chapter in a journey that started 5 years previous, right before my divorce, when I decided my life had too much clutter. So much mental clutter that I wasn’t taking care of myself.
At that time, I decided to simplify. Decided what truly mattered to me, focused on that and moved forward with a passion to live well.
Deciding to Be Healthy at Midlife
Starting over at midlife was not simple.
I was thrust into a huge life change after my divorce and then again when my kids where no longer living with me. I was on my own – later in life.
It was now “me, myself and I”. It was imperative I stay healthy.
I started to take care of myself better by doing things like drink more water, eat more veggies and walk more. I even took up hiking and cut dairy from my diet (ok, most of it, ice cream is my downfall.)
These helped me become more physically well yet I still felt incomplete.
My mind was scattered. I had trouble staying focused on what direction I should take in my life and how to build better relationships with my kids and those I love.
I knew what I had to do – decide what truly mattered in my life and cut everything else out. I needed to create a simpler life for myself by establishing my personal core values.
How Personal Core Values Help Me Live Well
Starting over half way through your life you bring a lot from your past. Insecurities, harsh feelings, and bad memories all play on your mind when you’re trying to make a better start.
Simplifying as much of the process helps tremendously.
I did this in 2 steps.
First, I cut back on many things and ideas that are not necessary for me to grow. These were things like moving to a smaller place, not listening to naysayers, cutting back on my social media time and giving away much of my stuff.
Once I culled back, I took the next step in developing my personal core values. With less to do and think about my mind was much clearer.
Personal core values are ideas and things that represent what is most important to you.
My personal core values involve staying healthy and living well, fostering healthy relationships with my adult kids, being autonomous and doing the things I love like hiking and writing.
When life gets tough, I look to my core values to bring me back to what I long for and love. They remind me of what is close to my heart.
And they always bring me back to my most content place in my mind.
My core values help me live well.
What Have You Done Lately that Helps You Live Well?
The theme for 2020 on Sizzling Toward 60 is Ageing Well, Living Well.
The second half of your life is for your enjoyment. How will you live well so you can enjoy life?
Would developing your own core values help?
Seeker of a Simpler Life. Allison is a single mom empty nester, hiker and explorer of the world. She loves sharing her story with others so she started her blog, Start a Simple Life.