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It is natural to dread the march of Time, to mourn the passing of your youth. But with a little bit of mental tweaking, your 40’s can be the best decade of your life!
‘Life starts at 40!’ is one cliché we all have heard from our seniors and elders. The first thought that used to hit my mind in response to that always was: Wow! What a way to cover up the ageing journey!
Forty is that stage of life where an individual isn’t exactly ‘youth’ anymore, and is now stepping into middle age bracket, towards getting old. Eventually. This is a very brutal reality – hard to accept, harder to ignore.
No one in the world is spared from having this experience. And at one point of time in life or another I’m sure, everybody has dreaded that stage when you would have to say, “I am forty today!” No matter what elaborate lifestyle you enjoy, how wealthy and powerful you are, you are still in the queue of stepping into that phase of life, and you have no control over that.
Till the time I entered this stage, I was naïve about that cliché, ‘life starts at forty‘. But after experiencing the road of walking into that bracket, I proudly say today, ‘There is nothing is as beautiful as being in your forties!’.
There is a natural change within you once you hit 40, that you start understanding life much better than before. So far my journey has been beautiful. Not in terms of the overall picture of life on a canvas, but of experiencing life in altogether different ways, with different perspectives.
The word ‘perspectives’ has finally entered my day-to-day dictionary in a bold manner and believe me, this small word has made a humongous difference in my life. It surely is making my 40+ journey a beautiful one!
In these two years of my 40+ journey, I have learnt a few things. And I am eager to share them with my mates, struggling or flourishing in their own journey.
Happiness is nothing but a choice. To make it simple, the way I make a choice everyday about what to eat or how much to eat depends solely upon my interest and my appetite. I have learnt to choose how to feel.
Each day, I think and tell myself that nobody will stop me if I sulk the whole day over petty issues or some bad experiences of the past. There would not be any difference to the world if I am crying inside for all that I desired but couldn’t possess. The only person that would be affected is me.
So now, the first step I always take is choosing happiness. The moment I decide to do whatever makes me smile, I would do that. Every single day I make it a choice to feel happy. Not that I have stopped facing the worst situations! But the practice of being happy and calm has helped me ignore the negativity around me and catch hold of the smallest of reasons to feel good about the situations.
I haven’t yet become an expert but I am on the road to being one soon.
To err is human. I’ve realised that more than anyone else, I have reprimanded myself for my past mistakes and complicated my life by mulling over them. Over time, I have understood that there can be a different perspective of looking at my slip-ups. Enough harm had already been done by myself, to myself. Now is the time to understand that everything that had happened, happened to make me learn something from it.
This change in perspective has changed my treatment of myself. Mistakes are natural, and learning from them and moving on is what growing up is all about. Now, none of my past mistakes bother me much. Just a small shift in my vision, but it has helped me create my happiness!
I have learnt that before forgiving others, it is essential to forgive oneself. This is the thought that is adding to my mental strength and stamina.
Unless I feel proud of what I have already done in my life and what I aspire to be in the future, nobody else would take any responsibility to pick up a trophy for me. It’s important to applaud my achievements loud and clear, to make the crowds hear the noise. It doesn’t mean bragging about my work but it definitely means complimenting and appreciating my own achievements. Without arrogance.
In the past, I have paid for being shy and passive about my own work. This pushed me to (finally!) learn to respect my own self first. That is the best way to get more than expected.
Having a high emotional intelligence has always been my biggest strength. Polishing that strength and evolving into an even better person is something I must learn while stepping into this beautiful next phase of my life.
Today, getting trapped in emotions, losing grip of a situation, ignoring subtle nuances under the influence of emotional turmoil, burdening myself with the responsibilities of keeping everything and everybody happy has become a somewhat remote possibility. My emotions are still my biggest strength but I use them intelligently, making things and situations simpler to decipher and resolve.
No matter what, my health has to be my priority. The journey of taking care of my mental health and my physical health, has thankfully taken me on a beautiful spiritual journey. This has ensured that I remain sane in this world of insanity. Having a calm mind helped me decide to take care of my body as well.
No situation or crisis keeps me bothered for a long time now. I have learnt to go through what I have to go through without resisting and unbelievably, that has given me more strength.
Inner peace is the new success and happiness is my agenda. My body, my heart, my mind, my soul comes first, at any given point of time.
And the most important thing which is imprinted in my being now is to feel gratitude for whatever I receive, whatever I do, whatever I face, whoever I meet. All the falls, all the rises, all the pains, all the heartbreaks, all those things which I had experienced and am yet to experience, are treasured and welcomed. I feel grateful being in this world and am happy to get opportunities to experience different colours of life, to rise above the average life.
The complications are getting erased, obstacles are getting cleared and life after 40 is going on phenomenally! I am happy, and am getting happier with each passing day.
And I am all the more thankful for it.
Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay
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