As a women’s counselor, I’ve worked with clients having difficulty coming to terms with growing older and the challenges it can present.
How often have you had a conversation with someone that starts with, “Of course at our age …”
It usually continues with one of the following:
· Aren’t as fit as we used to be
· Aren’t’ as attractive as we used to be
· Aren’t as slim as we used to be
· Aren’t able to do what we used to
What we tend to forget are all the wonderful things we have access to as mature women.
· We have knowledge, wisdom, and experience
· We have beautiful long friendships. Our friends know us so well … yet love us all the same, for who we are.
· We have a huge store of wonderful memories that we can draw on whenever we want or need.
· From the hard times in our lives, we’ve learned and grown.
- We’ve survived, and we appreciate the good times all the more.
These things are not available to the young.
But most importantly, this stage in our lives offers us the wonderful opportunity and space, to be who we truly want to be and to live the life we really want.
Younger people are generally preoccupied with living up to the expectations of others: family, friends, employers and other peers. In our early years, it’s easy to lose sight of who we are what we want for our lives.
This need to please tends to fall away as we mature.
Maturity gives us the opportunity to reflect on our life so far, to get some clarity about what has made us who we are and to make our own, informed decisions about who we want to be in the future.
During the course of my studies, one of my lecturers asked the class to spend fifteen minutes writing the Eulogy we would like to be read at our funeral.
It seemed like an unusual if not morbid request. But the revelations that came out of that exercise were quite profound for all of us. It gave us a clearer understanding of who we really wanted to be and the values that were most important to us. I still have the eulogy I wrote for myself. I read it every now and again as a reminder of what really matters and what doesn’t.
I’d highly recommend it as a way to find out what you want for your life, whether you’re 16 or sixty.
And the next time a friend reminds you of what you can’t do at your age, you may want to respond with what you can.
We can live our lives, as we wish, with wisdom and grace, without the need to fulfill the expectations of others. We can be mentors to the young and someone they aspire to be.
Bette Davis famously said that “old age isn’t for sissies” and in her statement, there is some truth. Retirement, becoming grandparents, facing age-related health issues, caring for aged parents, are challenges many of us are faced with. If you need help navigating your life challenges please contact me on M: 0438 388 336 or make an appointment via this website.