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The 40’s Ain’t So Bad

June 23, 2010

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I was recently reading a blog post by Darren Hardy and his wife Georgia about turning 40, and I started to reflect on all the things that have happened in my life to this point. Over the last year and half since turning 40, I’ve come to realize that being in my 40’s ain’t so bad (pardon the slang).

When I was younger, I wondered what it would be like when I got older. But I didn’t worry about it much because I had a lot to do before I got there. I was daring and outgoing, and challenged authority at every turn. I focused on how to change things that I didn’t agree with, and I definitely wasn’t going to step into line. At that point in my life, I couldn’t fathom being a wife and mom, and everything else that comes with it. Boy have I learned so much through the years.

When I hit my 20’s, I realized that I had to conform (just a little) to get where I wanted to be in my career. I had to dress a certain way for interviews and act a certain way to get the job I wanted. I couldn’t have picked a better…or worse…career for my personality, I wanted to be a computer programmer. I had a very analytical mind, if I didn’t know how something worked or how to fix it, I would certainly figure it out. However, back then that field was very stuffy and everyone wore suits. Something I was definitely NOT used to, so I had to learn how to fit in. In my private life, my boyfriend (my husband now) and I were not quite as rebellious as we had been when we were younger. We had moved from NJ to TX and were trying to figure out how everything worked down here.

As I hit my 30’s, we started our family. There was daycare and working long hours, and I was always stressed out. I started to care more about what everyone thought about me and my family.I was always trying to make everyone else happy, from family to friends to coworkers. I didn’t bother putting on makeup and I just pulled my hair back every day, couldn’t take time for myself since it was all about everyone else. If there was a conflict, I lost sleep over it. If something went wrong, I stressed even more. My poor husband, I’m not really sure how he put up with me through my 30’s.

For my 40th birthday, I insisted on having a big party. I figured, if I’m going to get old, I’m going to do it with a bang instead of a fizzle. As I crossed over into my 40’s, I started taking care of myself more, physically and emotionally. I’ve been doing so many new things, and I’m starting to get  back to my adventurous roots. I’m not saying that I’m back to being the rebellious little girl I once was, but I’ve been meeting new challenges head on. My husband and I have also joined new athletic teams after being away from it for many years. It feels great to get out there and compete again. And there’s my career…my new career. Since turning 40 last year, I’ve made a huge career change. I realized that I can be out on my own and I don’t have to work for someone else. I’m now a spa consultant, and I’m helping my husband realize his dream of opening an athletic center. And who’d have thought I would have my own blog?!? I hated writing when I was in school, absolutely HATED it. But here I am and loving it!

As I figure out this 40’s thing, I’ve also realized that I can’t make everyone happy. There will always be someone who is disappointed, and I just have to learn to accept it and move on. I’ve also learned to distance myself from people who are negative emotional influences. You know the type I’m talking about, the ones that don’t have anything nice or uplifting to say…the ones that make you feel emotionally drained after a 5 minute conversation. Like Darren Hardy said in  a recent blog post, what you feed your mind is what comes back out. If you’re constantly feeding it negative thoughts, that’s what will come out. I’m choosing to feed my brain positive thoughts and influences instead.

I’ve learned that you need to take life as it comes, and you can’t dwell on the bad stuff. Focus on the good things in your life, and it’ll make you happier and healthier in the long run. Like I said, being in my 40’s ain’t so bad 🙂

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