the lessons we learn from aging GenX and female

There are days when I see those young twenty-year-olds walking down the street and I long to be their age again.  I would be lying if I said that sometimes I wish for less wrinkles, and more taut, glowing skin.  But honestly, when I realize that wonderful skin would come with less wisdom and without the crucial life lessons that come from aging I have learned while the wrinkles were forming, I wouldn’t go back to my 20s for anything in the world.

I have developed so many strengths, and experienced so many amazing things since then, it is worth the fine lines on my face and the gray hair that I will cover up until the day I die. 

However, there are days when I feel less than thrilled to be me, and I need to be reminded of how blessed I am.  So I have created a list of habits we learn with age, to ward off those kinds of days.  I hope you find them helpful and maybe they can help you when you forget just how amazing and wonderful you are.

Meditate. 

I can’t explain it, but it works.  

Even if you meditate for 10 minutes a day, you will feel better.  

It helps me deal with life’s little and HUGE stressors.  

The amazing thing is meditation brings you peace, and not just during the time you practice meditating.  The peace you create will stick with you throughout your whole day. 

If you believe in a higher power, it will definitely increase your closeness with him/her/them.  

Warning:  it is NOT easy to train your chatty mind to be still. It can be frustrating. I am still struggling with staying focused but it doesn’t stop me from feeling the benefits of meditating. I look forward to each evening when I get to shut out the world, be still and enjoy the peace. 

Don’t Overthink. It’s Highly Overrated & Gets You Nowhere  

This one I can explain.  

Overthinking will steal your life.  It will crush your happiness and zap your soul.  

If you are constantly repeating your past over and over in your mind, stop it!  

Let it go.  

As women, we tend to need to analyze things to death. If a past experience caused you pain, and you still think about it, or wonder what if something would have happened differently or ask yourself what you could have changed, so this:

Your past has passed. 

There is nothing more you can do about it.  Leave it be.  

Constantly thinking about it won’t change a thing except make you miserable.  

There are a thousand ways to prevent over-thinking.  

My favorite is when an old thought keeps rising up in my mind, I immediately say, “Stop” out loud. This causes me to interrupt the thought and stop my rumination process.  

Okay, so I do get funny looks when it happens while I am in line at the grocery store, but that is just an added bonus.  

There is an exception, if this circumstance is very recent, and you need to think about it to learn something from it or to make amends with someone you hurt, you should think about it.  However, it only takes once or twice to learn from an experience and decide if you owe someone an apology.  If you are thinking about an experience that has long since past, you must let it go.

Stop Comparing Your Real Life to Other People’s Social Media Show.

Let me give you a few examples of Your Real Life vs. Your Social Media Scroll

#1

Your College Bestie’s Facebook Post:  So happy Hubby’s Mom is coming in town to visit with us!! Love her! Love her! 

Her REAL LIFE: She just had a HUGE no holds barred fight with hubby over his judgmental mother coming to town unannounced again.  Her dirty laundry is three feet high, and she has been wearing the same yoga pants for three days!!

#2

Your Other College Bestie’s FB post:  Junior made the honor roll again!!  His teacher is constantly talking about his participation in class!

HER REAL LIFE:  Junior is a spoiled rotten little shit whose teacher has to call his parents every day so he will stay in his damn seat, keep his hands to himself and listen for more than two seconds!

#3

Your High School Bestie’s FB post:  I met the most amazing, caring, loving man!  We are staying at his beach house this weekend!  He may be “The One!”

HER REAL LIFE: She ran into a guy selling hats, watches, and sunglasses out of his coat.  He lives in an abandoned fifth wheel at the rest area on the Interstate highway across from the beach, and he may be “The One” because her period is five days late!!! 

Do you get the picture???  

The only person you should compete with is YOURSELF.  Try to be better today than yesterday and if that means only wearing your yoga pants 2 days in a row instead of 3— damn good for you!!! 

Talk Nicely to Yourself

Most of the women I meet are kind, loving people who go above and beyond not to hurt anyone’s feelings or make others feel bad about themselves.  However, they speak to themselves like a Drill Sergeant with little man’s syndrome. 

We all screw up.  

We say the wrong things.  

We overlook the details.  

We forget our beloved best friend’s birthday.  

FORGIVE yourself. Tell yourself it is okay, and you will try harder next time.  

When you catch yourself cussing and fussing at the beautiful lady in the mirror, stop and tell her she is wonderful, lovable and fabulous!!! Your reflection and self esteem will thank you!! 

Get Out of Your Own Way

Ohhhhhh, this is where I struggle. My head can create all kinds of things out of thin air for me to worry about & reasons why I shouldn’t do what I want to do. I fight this battle daily.

So we need to quit making excuses and do what we want to do!!  Being busy is an excuse.  You make time for the things that are important to you, and YOU should be important to YOU.  

If you want to take a class on underwater basket weaving, take it.  

If you want to go see the AC/DC tribute band, go and rock out!  

Life is too short NOT to experience the things that make us smile and when you take the time to do things you enjoy, you return refreshed and able to be more present for the other activities you are required to do.

What Other People Think of You is NONE of YOUR  BUSINESS.

This is huge for women for some reason.  We actually worry about what people at church, at school, at work, at the grocery etc. etc. etc. think about us!!!  

Why?  

What difference does it make in our lives??  Not one stinking bit! 

If you go around choosing your actions by what others will think about it, you are going to miss out on your whole life. 

I have a NEWSFLASH for you.  

Most people are so absorbed in their own crap, they rarely have time to judge your latest adventures.  And if they do, that speaks to THEIR CHARACTER not yours!!  

My grandmother used to tell me, “They talked about Jesus Christ! So if they talk about you, just think about what grand company you are in!”  She was totally correct (about this and many, many other things!)

These are just a few of the little lessons that growing older teaches us.  

But sometimes, we forget them. We wish away how awesome it is to have experience, knowledge and the grace to discern life’s issues.  

So wage war on the gray hair and wrinkles with all your power (I DO!), but embrace these strategies that come along with wisdom and age. 

 And, whenever you get the chance, pay it forward and share your age induced astuteness with a younger woman.  

Being young isn’t all wine and roses either.

Thank you for reading! Gen X & Female