Today is my 55th birthday (yes that’s a tough one to swallow) and although this blog is usually about organization I thought I would switch gears for today.
I heard a wise women once say if the younger generation would listen to the advice of the older generation their life would be much easier. The reality is everyone has to learn by their own experiences and their own mistakes. These are a few of the things I have learned through the years.
This too shall pass.
Everyone has heard this a hundred times but as you age you begin to realize how true this really is. If you think back two months, six months or even a year ago of something that had you so upset and now you can’t believe you wasted so much time and energy on it. I have learned no matter what it takes, take a breathe, be patient and time seems to heal it.
Nothing is meant to last forever.
Enjoy the moment instead of thinking of forever. This one has been especially hard for me because I’m a planner and thinking in the here and now is a newly learned skill. Whether it’s a job, a relationship or where you live, things change and thats okay.
Your family is everything.
I can’t say this enough. You may not agree with family members, you may get angry at them, you may even take a time out from the relationship but in the end they are the ones that will have your back no matter what happens. Mend those relationships because one day you will need them.
Marriage takes work if you want it to last.
I have been married for 29 years in November and I have learned that if you want to have longevity in a marriage it takes work. When your first married you are in the honeymoon phase with no responsibilities other than to each other but overtime real life takes over. Colicky babies, job changes, mortgages, elderly parents, health issues, aging and the empty nest. It’s not easy and there are some days I think why does this have to be so much work but I have to say there is nobody I would rather be sitting next to in my golden years than the man I married.
Listen to the advice your Mother gave you.
It took me a long time to get this because when you are young you think you know everything. You hear the advice and keep it stored but you really don’t understand the meaning behind it until you are older. I have learned so much from my Mom through the years and continue to this day. No one loves you like your mother no matter how old you are.
Even if I could, I wouldn’t turn back time.
I have to be honest their are a lot of things I miss about my 20’s, 30’s and 40’s. I use to be able to stay up late, drink without getting a hangover, loose a few pounds in a couple of weeks and not have a wrinkle on my body. Would I give up what I have learned in my life to be young again? Absolutely not! My experiences have made me who I am today. I may not have always enjoyed the lessons I have learned along the way but it has made me a stronger more confident woman.
Supplements are important as you age.
I have so many people ask me how I keep my hair so thick and healthy at my age. I went through a period a few years ago that I saw signs that my hair was starting to change. It was not feeling or looking as healthy, thick or shiny as it use to. You may think it’s genetic but good genes can’t save your hair from aging. I did my own research and began using a hair, skin, and nail supplement and within a few weeks I noticed a big difference. If you don’t get everything you need from what you eat sometimes you need to supplement especially as you age. Just my opinion.
Make time for yourself.
As an organizer I often hear how over scheduled, tired and stressed out everyone is these days. Make time for yourself even if you have to schedule it on your calendar. Get a massage, go for a walk, take a bath or just have a glass of wine and listen to music. Take time for yourself and everyone around you will benefit.
Love what you do.
I can’t stress this enough. Whatever your passion is follow it. When you love what you do it’s no longer work.
Simplify your life.
Of course I had to mention this because less stuff definitely equals less stress. I think I have this mastered not just because of my profession but because I practice it in my own life. When you simplify your life you focus on what’s really important.
Find a form of exercise you enjoy.
I have tried almost every form of exercise you can imagine. Jazzercise, kick boxing, weight lifting, spin class and many more. You name it I tried it and then in my 50’s I found Pilates. It has changed everything about my body. I have better posture, muscle definition and most importantly flexibility. As you age you can’t do some of the things you use to do but you can still be in great shape. Exercise is an important part of staying healthy and youthful. Find something you love so you will look forward to it instead of dreading it.
Make your home a place you want to come home to.
I can’t stress this enough! In the world we live in today your home is your refuge from the craziness going on outside. If it’s an unwelcoming place that is full of clutter you will avoid it rather than embrace it. There really is no place like home.
Volunteer your time.
Nothing has been as rewarding as the time I have spent volunteering at the Sulzbacher Homeless Shelter. I have met the most amazing people and it has shown me a different perspective on life. Volunteering makes you feel needed and everyone needs to feel needed especially as you age.
Spend time with your girlfriends.
Have a few close girlfriends that you can count on when you want to talk or just be yourself. Men don’t understand woman like women understand women, end of story.
Take a break from social media.
I never grew up with social media so I know what it’s like to be without it. There are times I really miss the days of no social media. There is so much pressure and anxiety associated with it that sometimes you need a time out so you can regroup and reconnect with yourself and others.
Regret is not productive.
No matter how much you try to avoid it regret seems to rear its ugly head as you age. Where did the time go? What you should have or could have done differently can take over your thoughts. Write down your regrets and let them go. Nothing good comes from regret. You can’t change it you can just learn from it.
Your age is NOT just a number.
No matter how you slice it if you take care of yourself you will definitely feel better at any age but I don’t believe that 50 is the new 40. As you get older the signs start to appear that can’t be denied. You need glasses, you can’t wear high heels for more than an hour without being in major pain and you have to go to more doctors appointments just to stay healthy. With better cosmetic procedures we can look younger longer but there is no doubt everybody gets old.
Your health is everything and without it nothing else seems to matter.
I think many people take their health for granted until they don’t have it. Everyday you are healthy is a gift. In the past few years I have seen so many people get sick or die from cancer and heart disease. As you age you get very in tune with your body and you know when something is not right. Listen to your gut and follow it!
“At age 20, we worry about what others think of us. At 40, we don’t care what they think of us. At 60, we discover they haven’t been thinking of us at all.” Ann Landers
Image: by Sarah Stone and Neatly Designed