I’m 55 – a declaration that in and of itself, feels like a radical act. Compounded with the fact that I’m a woman, and a single woman at that – well, it almost feels inappropriate to say out loud.
Most of us, men and women alike, have been raised and accustomed to basing our actions that over time, create the landscape of our life, on the benchmarks of success “society” dictates. Underlying most of the rules, is the spoken and often silent belief that time is running out – more so for women than men. For women, it begins with our love-ability, marriageability, biological clock, and the ultimate demon: wrinkles on the freakin’ forehead!
As a woman who has passed through all those gates of hell and has survived to tell, as well as a Professional Coach who regularly works with men and women in their 40’s and older, I feel pretty qualified to share my greatest weapon against this harmful, completely unhelpful, and arguably untrue belief that time is running out.
For myself, and the men and women who have achieved midlife, and are enthusiastic about creating the second half of their life with consciousness and purpose, it goes like this.
Instead of making the usual to-do list of all the things you’re running out of time with, make a list of all the shit you don’t have time for anymore.
At 55, here, in absolutely no particular order, is what I do not have time for:
- High heels
- Cheap wine
- Small talk
- Uncomfortable clothes
- Listening to bullshit
- Boring people
- Working harder rather than smarter
- Appearing more intelligent than I feel at any given moment
- Playing small
- Asking forgiveness for wanting to create a successful business just because I want to
- Worrying about being a bad mom (daughter, sister, friend,etc….)
- Others’ opinions on whether I have enough trail shoes or hydration packs – Yes, I own 10 packs and no, I DO NOT have enough trail shoes, ever!
- Other people’s idea of what should matter most to me – even those people I love and adore
- Picking up the phone, just because it’s ringing
What’s transformative and almost magical about making your own, unique “Shit I Don’t Have Time For” list at midlife, or any age, is that we suddenly realize we have so much time for all the things that do matter to us, and in truth, time is never running out.