Are you living your best life now? If you want to age well, you need to seriously give this question some thought before we answer. If your answer is YES, then fantastic! If your answer is NO then YOU CAN CHANGE THINGS.
Today, I welcome to my first guest in the Ageing Well in August series. When I reached out to my guests, the first on the list was my BBB (Best Blogging Buddy) Leanne from Cresting the Hill. I explained my theme for August and knew that Leanne would come up with something special for us. Leanne has been experiencing a new chapter in her life and one which hasn’t been easy. She has shown strength and courage in adapting to a new lifestyle and letting go of a toxic work environment.
Today, Leanne is writing about Living your best life, Now! and I know that she speaks from experience. Don’t forget to visit Leanne and read about her latest journey. I’ve included the links to her website and social media at the end of her post.
Living your best life Now!
First of all, I’d like to thank Sue for having me here on her lovely blog once again. I’m such a fan of Midlife and making it our best time of life, so when Sue asked me to write about “Aging Well” I thought I’d write about why living our life to the full right now is so important.
WE’RE NOT INVISIBLE
For starters, no matter what society and social media try to tell us, we are NOT invisible once we hit 50. We don’t have to fade into the wallpaper and sit in a corner knitting socks while the Millennials get to have all the fun.
Our 50’s and 60’s are so much more than that, we’ve done the hard work and now we get to reap the rewards. You’re only invisible if you choose to be, if you stay open, engaged, interested in others, always having a smile, and choosing to be positive, you can’t help but shine. People are drawn to those who are living their lives well – they want to be a part of it, in the process they see us, and we stay vibrant and relevant.
Living visibly isn’t about fierceness or flamboyance (although it can be if that’s who you are!) it’s about being our best selves, celebrating who we’ve become and all that life has taught us. We don’t apologize for who we are, we don’t let others tell us what to think, we own our authentic selves and continue to search for ways to express that, and to develop even further.
WE’RE GATHERING SPEED
I saw a wonderful quote from Canadian singer/songwriter and Midlifer Jann Arden on Facebook that I’d like to share a little snippet of:
You are not getting older, you are gathering speed, and power, and wisdom.
It is an honour and a privilege to be here, on this mountain of knowledge, on this horizon of possibility. I feel more powerful and capable now than I have at any other time in my life.
I don’t know what’s ahead of me, and I don’t care.
What I do know is that I am capable of everything.
She expresses perfectly what “Aging Well” means for me. It’s not a time to slow down, it’s a time for making the most of all the wisdom and maturity we’ve developed from 50+ years of living on this earth. It’s a time of acknowledging our value and building our confidence and self-worth.
SELF WORTH AND SELF CONFIDENCE
I don’t know about you, but I’ve struggled with self-confidence all my life – putting on a front to cover the squirming insecurities and the negative voices in my head. It’s so debilitating to live that way and I’m sure I’ve missed a lot of opportunities along the way because I haven’t had the courage to reach out and try. Now that I’m older (and hopefully – wiser) I’m learning that my self-worth is entirely my responsibility, nobody else is judging me and those little voices in my head can shut up!
I love that Jann says
“I feel more powerful and capable now….”
And I do too, I’m not there yet, but I’m further along than I used to be. I have more confidence to live my life on my own terms and to let go of – what I imagine in my head – others may or may not be thinking about me. Because, in all honesty, the people whose opinions I value are cheering me on, and any other opinions are completely valueless to me so I can happily set them aside. Trusting myself and allowing my values and experience to guide me is such a blessing of this stage of life.
LIVING MY BEST LIFE RIGHT NOW
Jann mentions that she doesn’t know what lies ahead, none of us do. We could live to be grand old ladies of 103 or we could die far too young. It doesn’t matter if we have 3 months, 3 years, 30 years still ahead of us, what matters is what we do with the time we have right now.
If we put our lives on hold waiting for the weekend, waiting for an inheritance, waiting to retire, waiting to win Lotto, we’re wasting this “one wild and precious life” we’ve been given.
I left a very draining job behind earlier this year. I put off leaving for far too long because I felt obligated to stay. I put the needs of others ahead of my own wellbeing and came close to burning out and losing myself. I finally woke up to the fact that I was worth more than being in a miserable job. It seems so obvious to me now (and I wish I’d left back in 2017 when the rot first set in) but when you’re not living your best life, you settle for a lot less than you deserve. Once, you claim your right to a life that fills your cup, you have so much more to offer.
LIFE IS SHORT – MAKE THE MOST OF IT
I’ve come to see that we’re in the second half of life, we don’t have the luxury of waiting for another 20 years before we start living well. Our time is NOW – not tomorrow, not next week, not next year – NOW! Don’t stay in a job just to add a few thousand more to your pension fund, don’t put off the things that are calling to your heart. Free up the time and start pursuing those heart desires – it might be something small (like starting a blog) or it might be travelling the world, or turning your hobby into a career, or something as important as getting fit and healthy.
Start today, live well, age well, and celebrate your “one wild and precious life” – I know I intend to.
Leanne lives in the beautiful SW of Western Australia. She has two adult children who have grown and flown, married and settled in the city. Her empty nest consolation prize is two delightful grandgirls to keep her young and on her toes. Other than that, she spends way too much of her spare time blogging about the highlights of Midlife at Cresting the Hill and shares the rest of her leisure time with her husband and two cats.
Blog: Cresting the Hill
Facebook: Cresting the Hill