“Now I see that the journey was never meant to lead to some new and improved version of me; that it has always been about coming home to who I already am.” ― Katrina Kenison, Magical Journey: An Apprenticeship in Contentment
I was elated last week to turn 50. My husband makes fun of me. He says I’m the only person he knows who loves growing old so much that I lied about my age and started saying I was 50 when I was only 48!
I am incredibly intrigued by growing older. By the invitation to focus less on what I want to do and more on who I want to be as I move into my “second life,” and embrace the wild unknown.
While I believe age is irrelevant–my friends range in age from 21 to 91– I believe when we enter a new decade, we cross a threshold of sorts. Turning 50 feels like I’ve been given a new set of keys that open the gate to a magical garden I have not yet entered.
So, on the eve of my 50th birthday, I emailed a handful of dear friends who are a few steps ahead of me and asked these wise, powerful women, “What is the one piece of wisdom or insight you WISH you had been given when you turned age 50?” Is there a sentence you wish someone (your soul, the Divine, your mother, your wisest friend) had whispered in your ear as you entered your 50’s?
They were generous enough to share.
Kristine Carlson, author/coach
The year before I turned 50, I was definitely sweating it a bit. I knew it was in my mind, but also in my mind was the thought: I’m getting older and the fear that that might also mean irrelevant or redundant. I was also noticing my slowing metabolism and reluctance to “age gratefully.”
What I wish someone had said to me was what I know now to be true… you are getting older and with age, like fine wine, you become richer. Richer in wisdom, richer in spirit. Yes, your belly gets a bit fuller as do the hips, but you will fill with purpose and meaning and the chance to create a new dream with revitalized energy. The passion that I once felt in my yoni is now in my work. (Not that my yoni doesn’t still like some passion too.) It’s just that my energy is not going into my reproductivity as much as my productivity as I serve my bigger purpose. Turning fifty is a rite of passage that should warn all to take notice of what this woman is all about and what she deems important to her! She will be unapologetic as she reaches for her highest stars making the most of her precious commodity of life energy and time.
Margaret Keys, communications consultant
Take care to fully enjoy your body and connection with yourself ahead of other commitments and work. Live truly from the inside out; create more space for this. Enjoyment before felt duty. Embrace joy!
Jennifer Louden, author/teacher
It actually is true that life can become far richer and more real in your 50’s. There is an renewed opportunity to follow the thread of your truest life. It becomes easier to say yes and no to what brings you in alignment with that thread, which always remains a mystery yet animates you so completely.
Cynthia Treglia, accupuncturist/women’s health guru
Have an all-out, full-blown, spectacular, love affair with the incredible woman you have become. This will lead to a burgeoning, joyful, exhilarating love affair with your life, your friends and family, those you serve, and the ones who serve you. You will be a beacon of light for others.
Dr. Deb Kern, women’s health & wellness teacher/movement guide/author
At first I thought there were many things I would tell my 50 year old self, but it all boils down to one thing: trust yourself. I would tell her that if she’s having a hard time knowing who her true self is, then that’s the sign to remove all external distractions and get into her body. Once fully in her body, she will know herself. And that knowing is the one to trust.
Ellen Zimmerman, master herbalist and creator of the divine rose tincture
You are loved just the way you are.
I’M HERE FOR YOU. It’s belly-button gazing time. January/winter is the time of year to reflect on what worked and didn’t work over the last year and what we want to do differently in the New Year. Inevitably, “work-life balance” graces the top of most people’s wish list. Since 2000, my team and I have offered life balance workshops/retreats, coaching and books/online courses and would love to help you experience less stress and more resiliency in 2016. Shoot us an email at info at reneetrudeau dot com or call us at 512-459-6700 (and check out our offerings here). I’d love to support you! P.S. if you’re celebrating a milestone birthday this year, come celebrate with me at Kripalu Jan. 29-31 for New Way of Being: Women’s Self-Renewal Retreat where I’ll be continuing the party for my 50th!
Subscribe here to Live Inside Out, a weekly blog written by life balance teacher/coach/self-care evangelist and Career Strategists president, Renée Peterson Trudeau. Offering custom life balance workshops, women’s retreats, training/certification, books/telecourses and individual career coaching, her work has appeared in The New York Times, Good Housekeeping, Spirituality & Health and more. Thousands of women in ten countries are becoming RTA-Certified Facilitators and leading/joining self-care groups based on her award-winning curriculum. She is the author of The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal and Nurturing the Soul of Your Family: 10 Ways to Reconnect and Find Peace in Everyday Life. She lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and 13 year-old son. More on her background here.