Two weeks ago I was in a frame of mind where taking a look at my life meant wondering what the hell went wrong and how did I end up here. Where did all my dreams and hopes go? Is it too late to change? How do I start making changes?
Truth be told I kinda know what went wrong. It’s the how and why that had me questioning my whole existence. I felt lost, with no sense of purpose, just drifting along, like a log through the sea of life.
At fifty-eight years old I lived in a rented house, starting a new career with tons of debt and a two-figure bank balance. I was miserable, living in a house I hated, a community I wasn’t over the moon about, hating my life, myself, counting down to my expiration date while actively trying to move said expiration date forward.
Two weeks later and I feel like a totally different person. I still live in a rented house with tons of debt, trying to start a new career and my bank balance still reflects two digits. But today I no longer hate myself, my life, or my circumstance. I am no longer wanting to die or hurrying the process along.
So what changed? What happened? How did I end up there and what transitioned me to here?
If you have ever felt the sense of despair, lack of purpose, and defeat I was battling, you are in the right spot. Maybe I could shine some light and give you the push to make the change you need. It’s never too late to start over. I did and you can too. I write from my own experiences whenever I write so here’s hoping I can help you along.
So What Went Wrong?
There are a lot of things that went wrong in my life, yeah I know I am not unique we all have a back story. The reality is that it’s not what happened it’s how you react to what happened, how you process and deal with them that makes the difference.
What went wrong Is that I had a ton of dreams and hopes none of which I applied any sort of focus to. I merely hopped from one thing to another never bringing anything into focus.
My life had no plan or direction. I allowed outside influences to guide me allowing dream stealers to determine what I was capable of accomplishing. I did not focus on what I wanted to do.
Your dream for your life is yours alone. Never allow anyone to dictate what you want to do and where you want to go. If you have an idea hold it close to your chest.
While there are circumstances that predispose me to certain behavior, I still have to take responsibility for my choices and decisions. It is through this acknowledgment that we take the first step and begin our journey toward healing and recovery.
Formulate a plan of execution then go out and get it done. Sometimes we need to rid ourselves of toxic people that impact our decisions.
I did. Yep, I did. Without that as your first step, nothing will ever change. Okay now don’t go out attempting to throw everything to the curb. Baby steps.
Depending on what stage of your life you are at, you have probably accumulated a big bag of tricks you want to throw to the curb. Remember you did not get to where you are overnight, so making a change is not going to happen overnight either.
The biggest thing for you to change first is your approach and attitude. Now, this won’t change in regards to everything at once so start with one thing. The focus you apply to change that one thing may cause the domino effect that you need to start your journey.
My catalyst was making the decision to decide where I wanted to live. I looked for a new home in the parish I wanted to live in and focussed all the energies I needed to make it happen and it did.
Here are some steps to help you make the change you need to do the list is a little lengthy, but you may be able to find something here to help you along the way.
1. Try Something New
One of the first obstacles that you are going to face is trying something new. We can become so comfortable in our place of discomfort, that any attempt at change is thwarted by our fear of trying something new.
Your ability to make the change is going to depend solely on you and your desire for change. You won’t be able to do it for your kids, your moms, your pops or your bae. It may be hard but it can be done, depending on how bad you want it.
2. Set Intentions Every Morning
Setting your intentions daily, especially in writing is a good way to accomplish any goal and this goal is no different. At first, you may want to write about where you are now and where you want to be in three months, six months, or a year.
Setting long-term goals is important as it acts as a map to guide you along your journey. Having daily intentions will make the task more manageable and less overwhelming
3. Clean Your Surroundings
Cleaning out the old to make room for the new is always a good idea let’s face it. No one wants their meals served up on last week’s dishes. Nor would you go to work in last night’s party dress or makeup.
Sometimes cleaning your surroundings not only makes for a cleaner healthier environment but has also been known to improve mood and relieve stress. It will help to motivate you to get the job done
4. Do The Thing That Scares You
So we know making changes is a scary option for you, but maybe, just maybe you could conquer that fear by facing another. Outside of making changes, what’s the thing that scares you most?
The euphoria, sense of accomplishment, and pride you will feel for facing that fear may be just the kick in the butt you need.
5. Make Small Changes
Take small steps. We all know Rome wasn’t built in a day and every journey begins with the first step. Try not to overwhelm yourself by taking on too much and remember to give yourself credit for each new achievement.
6. Have Fun
All work and no play make Jack or Jill a dull boy or girl. It was true the first time it was said and it is still true today. Take time out of your busy schedule to recharge your batteries and energize your soul.
Go hang out with friends, visit the beach, or curl up with a book. Whatever your pleasure don’t forget to enjoy yourself on a regular basis.
7. Fake A Better Attitude.
They say you have to fake it till you make it. Waking up in a bad mood and walking around with a frown on your face all day will keep you in that bad mood. Put a smile on your face.
When you smile, your brain releases tiny molecules called neuropeptides to help fight off stress. Then other neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins come into play too. The endorphins act as a mild pain reliever, whereas serotonin is an antidepressant.
So put a smile on your face even when you don’t feel like smiling. This method can also be used to change your attitude and way of thinking. Be conscious of your thoughts and actively try to change the way you think and your attitude to life.
8. Stop Complaining
The next time someone asks you how your day is going instead of rolling out the list of things going wrong. Try to highlight the good things you have to be grateful for.
The fact that you woke up this morning is a good thing. You are here and alive.
If you are reading this article you have taken the first step towards change. You have acknowledged the need to change.
9. What Habits Do I Need to Change?
We all have some bad habits. Take a good long look at yourself, be honest, and try to identify the things you do that cause a negative impact on your life.
- Do you have a sweet tooth?
- Drink excessively
- Spend too much time on the internet?
Bad habits are hard to break and many of us spend years trying to quit unsuccessfully. Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day and it took years to build a bad habit. Be patient, trust yourself, and get help if you need to.
One of the strategies you may want to try is to not just eliminate the bad but to try to replace them with good habits. It took years to form a habit don’t beat up on yourself if you fail. Keep trying.
Unfortunately, many of us were not taught the art of money management. The high cost of living and sometimes bad planning will have us looking at a bleak future. As it pertains to our finances and our ability to retire comfortably, it’s never too late to change.
Go ahead address your finances and make plans for the future. You may need to consult with a financial planner to guide you as to the steps you need to take.
Most banks and investment firms have retirement and savings plans. Most will be willing to talk to you about how you can shake up your finances and make some changes. Learn to budget.
11. What is My Emotional State?
Many of us are burdened with emotional trauma brought on by events in our childhood and or our relationships. Emotional scars are detrimental to our growth and development.
These oftentimes impact not only our mental state but our current relationships and life in general. Taking a look at your mental health and finding ways to heal is important to your overall well-being. If you need therapy don’t be ashamed to admit you do and seek out help.
Exercise is important and not only a method for losing weight. When you exercise you not only keep your body in shape but your mental and emotional state are also affected.
Exercising helps to reduce your risk of heart disease, and manage blood sugar and insulin levels. It also helps to keep your thinking, learning, and judgment skills sharper as you age.
Changing your environment can be supremely beneficial. Traveling opens you up to different experiences. You can reap the benefits of travel just by taking a trip out of town if you can’t afford the time or money to travel overseas.
14. Change the Life Script
What is your life script? Your life script is the subconscious life plan that we often create in childhood. We don’t even know we are creating it. Your life script is often determined by influences from:
- Your primary caregiver
- The expectations of the people around you
Societal influences are often subliminal and come to us through the tv programs we watch, the music we listen to, and the books we read.
Words are powerful. If you grow up being told you were no good and won’t amount to much, chances are the impact of those spoken words will influence your decision-making.
It could either hinder your capabilities or push you to become an overachiever. It is possible to change your script and when you do your whole outlook will change.
15. Meet New People
Who you associate with is often a reflection of who you are. Try to meet and associate with people who are already living the lifestyle you seek. These relationships will encourage your efforts to change and become better.
16. Share Your Story
It is true that whatever you’ve experienced in life, whatever trauma you faced, there is at least one other person who has shared your experience. Quite often we isolate ourselves feeling alone.
When you share your story you will discover people who have had similar experiences. This will help you navigate your own experience. We help ourselves by helping others
17. Practice Self-care
When you travel on a plane, the stewardess will tell you that in case of an emergency, you need to first put on your mask, before trying to help anyone else. The same is true in life. You need to take time out to care for yourself before taking care of others. You can’t pour from an empty cup. Get a makeover, and improve your wardrobe. Pamper yourself.
18. Let go and Let God
I watched a video where the professor asked his student how heavy a glass full of water he was holding was. After they made a few guesses he said the glass itself was not heavy, but the weight of the glass was determined by how long you held it for.
In other words, just like the glass of water, the impact of the stress of life was determined by how long you held on to it. You don’t have to hold on to your stresses and past experiences. It is ok to let it go.
Decluttering your life is important. When our physical surroundings are cleared of the things we don’t need, we free up space for the important things we do need.
The same is true of relationships. If your relationship does not bring you joy or any positive input it is ok to block and delete toxic people from your life. This includes toxic family members and that childhood friend you have grown away from.
20. Improve Your Eating Habits
They say you are what you eat. I love pork and have not yet turned into a pig. However, your diet and nutrition do play an integral role in your general health and well-being. Try to improve your eating habits. stay away from a fast-food diet and make an effort to practice healthy eating.
21. Learn Something New
Learning expands your mental ability and improves your critical thinking. Try to learn something new. Learn a new language, acquire a new skill take your passion and turn it into a business. Take up reading.
22. Stop Trying to Please Everyone
At some point, you may discover that your life was spent trying to please everyone. This can be one of the greatest drawbacks in life.
Trying to be a people pleaser will have you on an endless merry-go-round heading nowhere fast. It is time to take control of your life learn to trust yourself and form your own decisions,
23. Learn to Walk Away
Learning to walk away from anything is not always easy. We become so comfortable in our spaces that even walking away from things that are hurtful to us presents a challenge. Fear of the future and the unknown prevents us from walking away from harmful relationships and environments.
Learn to walk away, go ahead quit that job, leave that relationship, move to a new country or state. It will be Ok.
Trust yourself and make the changes you need. It is ok to be happy, do whatever you need to do, and push yourself out of your comfort zone.
24. Forgive Yourself and Forgive Others
The ability to forgive ourselves and others is an important part of healing. In life we all make mistakes and mistakes can be positive or negative depending on our attitudes.
When you are able to learn from your mistakes it will allow you to use the experience as a tool for learning. Stop beating up on yourself. Forgive yourself and others, and open yourself up to new growth.
25. Learn to Love Yourself
Learn to love yourself. Accept your beautifully made flawed self cos if you can’t love yourself no one else will.
26. Celebrate and Accept Yourself
Now that you have made all these changes it’s ok to celebrate your achievements. Congratulate yourself on a job well done and step into the new you.-
Benefits of Making Changes
Making changes is a positive step towards growth and improvement. By embracing change, individuals and organizations open themselves up to a world of possibilities and opportunities. Here are a few of the benefits of change:
Increased Adaptability and Resilience
It allows you to develop a higher level of adaptability and resilience. By stepping outside of your comfort zone and embracing new experiences, you become better equipped to navigate challenges. Change provides an opportunity to learn and grow, fostering resilience and the ability to bounce back from setbacks.
Enhanced Personal Growth
Making changes promotes personal growth by encouraging you to challenge yourself and explore new avenues. It allows for self-discovery and the development of new skills and abilities.
When we step outside of our familiar routines, we open ourselves up to a wealth of learning opportunities and self-improvement. Embracing change can lead to increased self-confidence, expanded horizons, and a deeper understanding of oneself.
Improved Problem-Solving Skills
Making changes often requires finding solutions to new problems or adapting to unfamiliar situations. This process of problem-solving strengthens our cognitive abilities and enhances critical thinking skills. By actively seeking solutions and thinking creatively, individuals become more adept at overcoming obstacles and finding innovative ways to tackle challenges. These problem-solving skills are transferable and can be applied to various aspects of life, leading to more effective decision-making and problem-solving abilities.
Increased Efficiency and Productivity
When we are open to change, we become more receptive to new ideas and approaches. This openness allows us to identify and implement more efficient processes and strategies.
By embracing change and seeking out improvements, you can:
- Streamline your life
- Eliminate redundant tasks
- Optimize your productivity levels.
By breaking free from old patterns and routines, you can explore new career paths, build new relationships, and discover new passions. Change can lead to unexpected connections, collaborations, and experiences that may not have been possible otherwise.
Embracing change expands our horizons and increases our chances of encountering exciting opportunities. This will propel us toward success.
Embracing Change for Continuous Improvement and Growth
Making changes brings forth a range of benefits. It enhances adaptability, resilience, and personal growth. It improves problem-solving skills, and efficiency while opening doors to new opportunities.
Embracing change allows us to embark on a journey of continuous improvement and advancement. To learn more tips on how to live a healthy life after 50 and thrive, follow us for valuable insights.
We encourage you to leave a comment, share your thoughts, and join our community of like-minded individuals committed to making positive changes. Let’s embrace the power of change and unlock a world of possibilities.