Why I’m no longer afraid to turn 40 and other insights
Tomorrow is the day. Yes, the day I’ve been both fearing and looking forward to for a long time.
Except, I wasn’t quite expecting that I’d be turning 40 during a global pandemic.
For years I wanted to push turning 40 back. I didn’t feel ready to reach this milestone yet. I thought that by age 40 you needed to be deep in your career, running a department, making the salary you dreamed of, blah, blah blah.
You basically needed to get your shit together.
I didn’t feel I had it together.
Until I realized that the “together” part of my vision for this age was complete crap. The age doesn’t define you. The job doesn’t define you. Your things don’t define you.
About two years ago I did a lot of personal work on myself and realized that this life I’m living is entirely up to me to make. No one else gets to choose it for me.
Gratitude and Joy
The best lives are made based on gratitude and finding joy. Those are the secret ingredients. At least for me.
That’s why this next decade is truly going to be best one for me, because I am living it for a feeling, not a status or a checklist.
Stepping fully into who I am meant to be, and not what society or anyone else wants me to be.
What brings me joy are family, friends, fun, coffee, wine, good food, a good workout, travel, thrift stores, and the business that Sarah and I built and the clients who have become great friends.
When I think of the list of things that bring me joy, I realize I won the lottery!
I have people who care so much about me and I’m forever grateful for that. I will live the rest of my life in the glow of these amazing people in my life.
I’m a different person now
The person I was at 30, chasing the high-profile jobs with the bigger paychecks because I felt that was what made me successful is not who I want to be.
That person was full of stress and anxiety. Constantly trying to be the person others wanted me to be. She was negative, tired and constantly put herself down.
It’s funny how much you learn about yourself when you start listening.
The biggest lesson I learned in my 30’s that has changed the way I will live my life in my 40’s is that I don’t care about other people’s opinions of me or my life or how I’m living it. It’s so freeing!
In fact, a friend told me the 40’s are called the “fuck it 40’s” because you just don’t care about outside influences anymore.
That attitude must be applied to how I treat others as well. I try not to judge someone for living their lives, hoping that whatever decisions they make is out of joy as well. Me focusing on what other people are doing only makes me feel crappy, and I refuse to feel crappy in my 40’s.
I also have learned to release control. I can’t control that we’re in a global pandemic and the economy is reeling. I can control my reaction to it.
Happiness if found when you let go. Trust in the Universe.
When you fight to control situations or control how others think of you, and everything else, that’s unnecessary energy you’re releasing. And it’s often driven out of fear, which is a negative energy.
I don’t have time for any of that now. When you release control, you’ll find there’s a lightness that comes with it.
Remember: You can’t control situations, but you can control your reaction to them.
When it comes to body image, I really thought I’d have a six pack by now, but I’ll take having energy over a six pack any day. I love that I have the energy to run a business, a home and take care of child without needing breaks. So, my workouts are pushed hard, focused on performance and endurance and that makes me so happy.
All these things I thought I would be or thought I’d achieve don’t matter anymore. They’re not really my dreams anyway.
The life I’m living now is beyond my dreams. I’m truly and completely happy and ready for this decade. I can’t believe I dreaded it for so long.
Now once we’re out of quarantine, we’ll be celebrating. I promise you that.