Too many Baby Boomers live in the past. Sure, the magnificent 60s can never be duplicated. But how many times can we relive the concerts we attended or the first time we heard the Beatles? And I loved the groovy space toys of the 60s. But I am sick of looking in the past to get a thrill today. I refuse to spend the remainder of my days looking to the past.
Here’s what I believe: the best years of your life can happen after 50. Stop looking back and start looking forward.
Try these 7 ways to make life after 50 the best years of your life:
1. Let Go of the Past.
I get it. You’ve been hurt. Your spouse screwed you over during the divorce proceedings. Someone else got your promotion. Your son turned out to be less than you hoped. But let it go. You cannot grab onto your bright future while hanging on to your dim past. Write down the hurts of the past. Take that piece of paper and flush it, burn it, tie it to a helium balloon and let it go.
2. Reinvent Yourself.
You’ve worked hard to become the person you see in the mirror. Maybe it’s time for a change? Make a list of the 5 people you most admire. Then list the outstanding qualities of these people. Review the list and choose some qualities you can incorporate into your life. Reinvent yourself into a new you.
3. Take a Class.
Finish this sentence: “I’ve always wanted to know how…” Make the time to take a class. Learn taxidermy, blacksmithing, astronomy, or study the classics. Learn a new language. Study fashion design. Find an area of interest that you’ve shoved over in the corner and pursue it. There is no better time to learn than now.
4. Turn Your Passionate Hobby into an Income.
The majority of people hate to go to work each day. They cannot wait until the grind is over. This is a sad reality of life. But what really turns you on and gets the motor running? Consider turning that passion into a way to make money. Start slow. Explore the options. If you are still in a career don’t quit your day job. Start dreaming of how to turn that hobby into cash.
5. Become a Mentor.
You possess a wealth of information. Why keep it to yourself? There is someone you know who could benefit from your input. Find that person and pour your life into him or her. Take your time finding the right person. Not everyone is teachable. Some might be offended by your mentoring offer. But when you find the right person your life will take on new meaning.
6. Get Serious about Getting in Shape.
One of the happiest days of my young life was when I realized I would never again be required to take another physical education class. Now, 45 years later, my disdain for exercise is obvious. It’s time to get in shape. Start slow with consistent minor changes. Dump those extra pounds. Start walking every day. Get the blood pumping. You will feel better and live longer.
7. Work at Making Family a Priority.
The older I become the more I find myself thinking of family. Confession. Too many times in the past I choose career over family. My bad. It hit me that the only legacy I can leave behind is family. When I’m gone my stuff will be auctioned off. Soon I will be forgotten. But it is through family that a legacy can make the greatest impact. It’s time for you to invest in family.
Robert Browning almost got it right when he wrote, “Grow old along with me. The best is yet to be.” My version is this, “Grow BOLD along with me. The best is yet to be.”
Boldly claim that the best years of your life are after 50. Go. Make it happen. Right now.
Which of these 7 ways are you going to pursue?
Great points in this article, Randy!
Randy, Another great post. In many ways my life is the best it has ever been and I’m thankful for that. An additional quality that will serve any of us well is Gratitude. A great book that would be helpful to anyone is Joan Chittister’s book ‘The Gift of Years’. This book is a gem that has so much more depth than most books on this topic. Thanks for the life lessons you are sharing! I enjoy reading them.
Randy, Great insight…You are exactly right, brother! I have engaged in all seven. The vision becomes brighter following your list.
Thanks for your kind comments. Life after 50 really can be the best years of life!
Always looking at the present & to the future for what God has in store. Appreciate the “plan of attack” and need to work on it.