Over the last few years I’ve discarded obligations and reorganized my life. A lot of these things happen because of age. It’s natural. Just like a snake sheds his skin or a tree loses its leaves, people change their habits. It doesn’t mean we’re fickle. We grow. We change. If I can’t do something anymore, I know that it’s time to let someone else do it. Mostly though, I’ve made a conscious decision to change my focus in this part of my life. In the past, I’ve been helpful. I’ve been nice. And somewhere deep inside of me it seems as if I’ve tried to make up for some unknown mistake or atrocity, which I can’t remember committing from my past. It’s as if I’m afraid of being selfish even. Whatever it is, real or imagined, it doesn’t matter, I’m moving on. Nice is too flimsy.
Are you feeling stuck? If you’ve found yourself in the middle of the road, and feel you’re not going anywhere, maybe it’s time to reevaluate what you wanted when you started walking. It’s possible you started strong, then lost your focus. Stop whatever you are doing and ask yourself, am I doing this because I want to do it? Or because I feel an obligation? If you want to do it, then keep on going. If you feel you should do it, it might be time to let someone else take over. Worthy causes need someone who can give to them passionately. That’s hard to do when you are not enjoying yourself.
What makes your heart sing? You’re going to make mistakes. You will look silly. People may even wonder if you’ve lost your mind, but that’s alright. You’re about to have some fun. I’m asking myself these same questions now.
For all of you who have matured and feel comfortable in your life…don’t get too comfy. Life is full of surprises and you never know what’s around the bend. If you want to keep your mind and heart healthy you need to think young. It could time for you to learn a new hobby or take up a new challenge. We want to stay unstuck throughout our lives. Stay nimble.
I want to start with some simple ground rules that apply to all of us;
- It’s time to get quiet and clear your head.
- Get an idea. Whatever brings you delight.
- Do what you value. If your heart isn’t in the work, you will have difficulty completing the task.
- Take one step towards that idea.
- Take the next step.
- At first don’t ask anyone’s opinion.
- If anyone wishes to give you advice tell them you will consider what they said and
- Just keep walking
- If no one supports you, support yourself
- Express yourself in some way, whether it’s with a sticker on your car or the shoes you wear.
- Read inspirational stories. They come in many forms; books, magazines and blogs. Feed yourself inspiration.
- If you’re feeling stuck, do one thing differently.
A book I just read: Success Through Stillness by Russell Simmons
The universe is PERFECT (darn it all!) I have been noodling “pressing the reset” all day and hopped over here to see if maybe something you wrote might change my channel. Same show/new episode!!
I have generally done many of the things on your list for most of my life, but #2 stopped me cold. I have been consumed with overcoming set-backs for so long now that — like the frog on the stove, boiling to death because the increase in temperature was gradual — I’m not really sure what WOULD “delight” me anymore.
It’s as if I’ve forgotten that one of my core values was FUN! Somewhere along the line “responsible” and “resilient” kicked it out of line and ripped its invitations to the Values Gala right out of its distracted little hands. I’m not the same person I was when life seemed one delight after the next (or maybe, not so easily amused now that I am older?), so I’m not even sure where to look for the answer at this stage of my life.
Don’t get me wrong, I “enjoy” much of what I do, but nobody could legitimately argue that the majority of the tasks on my plate are “fun” or “delightful” (besides the puppy to-do-s, of course — I have laughed more in the few months since I brought him home than in several years prior!)
Hmmmm – what do other “third act” Boomers do that I could begin to add post haste? What could I PLAN to do in the not-too-distant future, to give me new wind beneath extremely tired wings?
New noodling with new questions — thanks!
(Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
– ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
“It takes a village to transform a world!”
I know. and omg do I know. It’s the one I think we all forget. I recently went back to my journaling, 3 pages long-hand writing. I discovered that I’ve been telling myself no to fun stuff. I’m almost 50. How many more years am I going to have left to have fun? What am I waiting for? So I decided, which is why I wrote this piece, it’s time to press restart. I don’t want to be the frog and end up cooked. I want to dig my toes in the sand and enjoy Netflix marathons. Keep noodling.
Sounds like “the morning pages” — 3 pages, hand-written, The Artist’s Way. If you count “morning” as “shortly after awakening” (vs. the morning nazi’s o’clock-based reckoning), I did them for some time.
If I recall correctly, I stopped when I hit “no read week” in that book. My life simply could not support stopping my business because Julia Cameron thought it would be a great idea for me not to read anything for a week.
Like most black and white suggestions, that one backfired — at least it did for me. I suppose you could say I had a black and white reaction to it, but doing morning pages every day completely lost it’s appeal once I hit “no read week.” (Sadly, I stopped my evening journaling at the same time).
I do miss noodling on paper, though. Perhaps I’ll think about going back to journaling in some fashion.