August 6, 2022

7 Life-Changing Lessons to Learn from a 70-Something.

 It’s my birthday week and here is the wisdom this 70-something has a need to share.

1. Life Wisdom: Find the Balance Between Doingness and Beingness

Over the years, I missed too many moments when I wasn’t fully present in each precious moment. Notice you are in each moment. As a wife, mother, dreamer, realist, musician, teacher, and writer, I remember rushing around and not even noticing that it was me rushing around. I felt like a robot going through the motions. As a result, I feel as if I became old in an unconscious blink. Why? I didn’t respect the quick evaporation of my moments.

Try with all your power to stop your mind from racing ahead too quickly with plans for the future or spinning out of control by spending time regretting the past.

Be here now. Feel each moment caressing and surrounding your body, mind, and spirit. Be in it.

I spent too much time worrying, planning, pleasing, regretting the past, thinking about the future, trying to be perfect, and dreaming dreams that took me away from each miracle that embodied the present.

Don’t get me wrong. It’s important to dream and to act upon our dreams. I am passionate about the importance of daydreaming and taking action steps toward manifesting big and small dreams.

In-between dreaming and acting upon your dreams leave empty space to simply be. No expectations, no pressure, no planning. Just be and breathe

2. Life Wisdom: The Disease to Please

I have always been a people-pleaser, and contrary to popular opinion, I think it’s a loving act of kindness to please others. There are many people in our world operating from a purely egocentric stance. Altruism and the good of the collective whole often get left behind in the blur of life.

If you are a natural people-pleaser, thank you for extending yourself and offering your open and kind heart to others.

The other side of the coin: If pleasing others isn’t balanced by leaving time for yourself, shift before it’s too late. Obsessive people-pleasing can deplete your body, mind, and spirit. Empower yourself to set personal boundaries.

Stay aware of your energy level and try to sway the giving-receiving pendulum to the middle.

 Self-love is not selfish. It is “self-full.”

3. Life Wisdom: Perfect Peace, Over-Thinking, and Nature—The Connection

Merge with the perfection of nature. We don’t need to give an exact name to what we are seeing. We can look at it “as is.” Our cognitive mind can stand in the way of being one with nature’s peace offering. Suspend the need to know the specific name of a certain flower.

There are times when it is awe-inspiring to simply look at a flower with an open heart and feel its purity in absolute form.

Just you and the flower being together. Perfect peace.

4. Life Wisdom: My View of the Word “Success”

If you don’t think you’re a “success” based on your financial situation, unmet dreams, or when comparing yourself with others, try to stop that annoying inner critic from destroying you.

Were you kind, considerate, loving, caring, forgiving, compassionate, empathic, or helpful to someone today? According to my standards, you are a stellar example of the truest meaning of the word “success.”

As you use the power of your imagination and creative visualization to project what you might like to do in the world to make a positive difference, be patient with yourself. The universe has its own plans for you, too. Work with it. When obstacles or new situations show up and seem to thwart your momentum, there is always a higher reason.

There is a time to be at rest and a time to step into your butterfly spirit. Discern and intuit which stage you are in. This is what personal growth and transformation are all about, and this is what inner happiness and success are all about, too.

There is an ebb and flow to life. We have to be patient enough to accept the ebb, and ready enough to greet the flow.

Be kinder to yourself. Take a loving look at the inner growth you’ve experienced over the years. How many obstacles have you surmounted?

Despite what you have gone through, you are still here.

Your determination, persistence, strong will, resilience, courage, and strength are all examples of the highest definition of the word, success.

Thank you for not giving up.

Divorce, heartbreak, addiction, grief, mental health, COVID-19, illness, dysfunctional family issues, dropping out of school, being fired from a job, homelessness, abuse, heartbreak, poverty, thinking your parenting skills could be better—through it all.

Whatever is going on for you…

You are still here. Congratulations. You are growing, shifting, changing, and evolving. Never give up. Stay in the light of hope.

Praise yourself for handling what you have been handling, sometimes silently and often secretly. You are amazing and your inner child and highest inner parent wants you to know that about yourself.

5. Life Wisdom: Social Media

Connect with people. Be on social media. It can be a positive platform for deep human connection and for doing good. I’m a big advocate of social media and I use it to make a positive difference.

The other side of the coin: set boundaries. Leave it for an hour, a day, a week, and more. Connect to the earth and the sky and everything in between as often as possible, and don’t let the time you spend on social media rob you of your moments on earth.

Social media can turn into an addiction, and I am the only one who can control my addiction. Like my father said to me, “Everything in moderation.”  

6. Life Wisdom: Age and Expectation Downfalls

Don’t label any age as a “supposed-to-be.” Whether you are in your 20s or 90s, we are all in process and still evolving until the last breath.

If you are friends with a 20-something person, don’t assume he/she/they are supposed to be married, have children, love one gender, or have that dog and house with a white picket fence.

If you meet someone in their 30s, don’t assume they are already settled in life or “should be” settled. If we are internally growing and transforming, we are never completely settled.

If you know someone in their 40s, give them the compassion they need for attempting to balance a busy life while trying to find time for themselves.

If you know someone in their 50s, be kind. Menopause, “manopause,” and having mid-life crises are real and aren’t easy.

If you know someone in their 60s and 70s and beyond, realize that one age and one lifestyle does not fit all. Don’t assume any one person should be a certain way just because they are a certain age group.

My passion for peace, writing, life coaching, teaching, creativity, and music-making are stronger than ever. I am determined to make the most out of my final chapters and create a high resonance in the world.

I am also learning to let go of what I can’t control, which is just about everything.

7. Life Wisdom: Listen to your innate rhythms

Don’t listen to societal rules. If you need to nap, take a nap. If you want to go to bed earlier or later, do it. If you feel like having ice cream for dinner, have it. If you have a need to veer off your way of eating, try it. A brownie, a small slice of tiramisu, or a chocolate croissant may be just what your craving needs.

Then, stop. Balance. This impulsive choice doesn’t mean you’ve gone off the deep end. It was just an indulgent moment.

Life Wisdom Gems: Summary

Structure is good. Planning is good. Over-structuring and planning can be stifling. Leave room for spontaneity.

Listen to your body—what it needs, what it’s crying for.

Offer yourself the same compassion, kindness, empathy, and love you so freely offer others.

Changing, growing, and learning are continual.

Forgiveness is a process.

Love is a process. I’ve been married a long time. I am still trying to figure out how to love better, receive love better, and do better in general.

Give yourself a voice in the world. Speak your truth with clarity, strength, and love.

Savor each moment.

Take care of your body, mind, and spirit.

Leave time to just be. You’re not vegging. You’re being.

Underneath the silence are hidden talents and gifts waiting to call you forth.

Listen for the universe’s cues and clues.

Do everything in moderation. Balance, balance, balance.

Believe in yourself.

Trust in the magical mystery of life.

Don’t try to fix and control everything.

Don’t push the river.

Make time to be. Breathe. Meditate.

Immerse yourself in stillness and silence.

Let go of trying to fix the unfixable.

Surrender to the unknown and unsolvable.

Live with grace and forgiveness toward yourself and toward others.

Honor and love yourself, be your own best friend, and never minimize, berate, or dumb down.

Step into the full you. Don’t hold back. Don’t mute yourself.

Do your best to be the peace you want in the world.

Stand tall in your imperfections as well as your strengths. No one is perfect. Accept all of who you are.

You are enough.

You are an innocent child of the universe, and you are loved.

Accept yourself. Everyone makes mistakes. Let them go.

Everyone has pimples, wrinkles, moles, aches, and pains. Let them go.

Find positive distractions and projects of love.

Love yourself through everything. Heartbreak, grief, disappointment. Everything.

Don’t take anything personally. The issue is usually about them. Not you. (What they are dealing with is in their soul of souls.)

Be gentle with people.

Be gentle with yourself.

The poem, “Ode to Me” says it all. It was written by my friend, Judes Look-Why, and it is published in my book, “Peace Dreamer: A Journey of Hope in Bad Times and Good,” Chapter 5: “Best Friends Forever.”

Ode to Me

Judes Look-Why

I love you!

I stand up for you.

I am here for you.

I respect and honor you. 

I am infinitely devoted to you.

I have a best friend in you.

I love you!

Remember: even if it’s not your birthday today, every minute is an opportunity for rebirth, so happy birthday to you, too.

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