Have you ever wanted something (or someone) so badly that you just knew if it didn’t happen for you, life would just not be complete? The more you thought about that one thing, the more convinced you became that this was God’s will for you. It was your dream and you knew it was meant to be.
Then it didn’t happen. Or it did, but not in the way you had fantasized? Now, you’re thinking, what was I thinking? Why did I think this one thing was going to fulfill my destiny? Make my life complete?
Was this really God’s will or something I “hoped” was His will?
Oh, let me count the times I pushed, pulled, and manipulated results that ultimately ended up disastrous when I finally got whatever it was that, at the time, was going to bring me life and joy.
I placed my identity, my worth, on the ideal that I conjured in my mind. That thing or person would complete me, not my life, but actually me as a human being.
No wonder I always fell short. No wonder after I finally got what I so desperately sought, I would feel empty, cheated, unworthy.
This happened in my career, relationships with men, possessions, even in the striving for a certain physical appearance. All of it defined me and always let me down.
And to cover that disappointment and pain, I would resort to “feel-good, short-term” solutions like overeating, overdrinking, over-you-name-it.
It wasn’t until I began the journey back to God that I finally realized that I have value as a person simply because He created me.
And that I could have whatever I wanted in this life. It would only require that I count the cost. Would I be required to go against TRUTH and my most authentic self? When I answered this and other questions I could courageously venture toward the goal, the dream.
And it was okay, no matter how it turned out because the thing itself did not identify me.
And knowing God’s will? I only know for certain that He loves me. And, if I ask for help, it comes in the form of angels with skin on—those people who guide me on the road to freedom, a peaceful spirit, love and myself. I also make time to be still, to listen to the small voice inside.
Can you relate to this? If so, please, let me know. I’d really like to hear from you.
It’s never too late to Take Back Your Life! You are so worth it!
60 is the new 40 and other myths about aging
Some even say 60 is the new 30. I say tell my body that!
The quest for eternal youth isn’t new to our culture. With a number of us approaching or well into the senior years, there seems to be an increasing struggle to maintain a youthful appearance. It’s part of our youth-obsessed culture, and it doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.
The anti-aging industry has risen to the demand for eternal youth, or the appearance of it, to become a multi-billion dollar force in our country. They’re giving us what we want in the way of procedures and potions.
While I was in grad school in my 50’s I studied the aging of the American woman and its impact on increasing depression and substance abuse issues in women over 50.
My research revealed that when women are satisfied with life when their identity isn’t tied to how young they look, but how good they feel—that healthy self-esteem and confidence that comes from deeper spiritual and emotional work—the number of years becomes insignificant compared to their enthusiasm for life.
When we engage with others in meaningful relationships, life-enriching activities (fun included), and a sense of purpose, we can stop chasing the elusive 60 is the new 30 social construct and respond to our bodies with love and kindness. That means we can take care of our emotional, physical and spiritual health and reap the benefits well into older age.
There has never been a time when we can re-assess and re-invent the next stage of life as today. Look around—women are boldly taking control of their lives. They’re building businesses; volunteering where their heart leads, and doing all the things they finally have time for!
From my view, I see more women getting into what stimulates, inspires and moves them. Retirement from a long-held job position means time to plan another great adventure.
Am I getting rid of my lotions and potions anytime soon? No, but I’m not chasing the dragon of the next big thing to look like a younger me (there are two things women can’t hide; one of them is age).
Instead, I’m dedicating time and energy to my life’s mission of helping the next woman to take back her life! I am so excited that my life experience and training can show women that they do have what it takes to live a fulfilled and prosperous life when they let go of what they can’t control (growing older) and focus on what they can —finding meaning and happiness today. Click here for more.
I’m taking time to see my grandkids, spend time with my friends and husband, and making sure I live this one life God gave me to the fullest.
How about you? If you’re under 50, how are you feeling about the aging process? How about you Boomers? I’d love to hear from you.
On the journey to taking back my life, I discovered that while I thought I was looking good and doing pretty well, I was, in fact heading for a fall.
The truth about what was really happening in my life presented itself in various ways. When I could no longer hide behind the carefully-constructed image of who I wanted you to see, my relationships, my work, my finances, my life began to suffer.
Self-gratification–immediate satisfaction, with no long-range focus. There was a long, long time of hurt behind the actions that were part of my low self-esteem.
Everything I did was to make me look good or feel good.
When I was engaging in temporary ways to find pleasure or to soothe and comfort me from pain—mostly emotional–I was anxious and depressed all the time. That’s what happens when we operate from ego and low self-esteem. Our focus is always on right here, right now.
My beliefs–the false and unhealthy ones–protected me from having to do what was right–what God wanted for me. I could rationalize and justify any behavior.
Learning right thoughts, right action, right behavior; finally living with a new perspective changed my entire life! A lifetime of living with low self-esteem, fear, and addiction called for a new way of living.
How did this happen? First, I had to hit the proverbial bottom. I had to get into enough pain to see that how I was living wasn’t working. Hopeless-and wanting-to-die pain.
Then I had to get help because I didn’t know how to change.
“We are called to live the truth of our uniqueness.” David Benner
When I finally let down my guard, got honest, hope came in. The mentors, spiritual guides, and others who God brought to me through His grace helped me heal and I finally learned how to “live out loud”—be me.
Authentically, confidentially. I learned how to love myself and others.
It’s been over 30 years since the journey began. And, sometimes I still want to do what I want to do instead of what’s right. And I suffer major consequences in my body, mind, and spirit when I give in to instant gratification.
I don’t ever want to go back to the way it was. When you have high self-esteem, your confidence is high. You know how to handle the setbacks in life. I work at this every day. I have learned what I need to do to live the “higher life”.
And, it’s the reason I do what I do–working with women to show them how to get out of the trap of feeling anxious, hopeless, wallowing in low self-esteem.
We work together to get them on the path to their best and true selves. And a beautiful life in the uniqueness of God’s creation.
Is it time to Take Back Your Life? Say yes to you today. The good stuff is waiting for you.
What does Christmas mean to you?
The season holds different meanings for each of us.
Maybe you don’t celebrate Christmas in the traditional way—the tree, the decorations, the gifts, the celebration of the birth of our Savior, Jesus, the music and the gatherings. And gathering with family.
Maybe you celebrate the Holiday season—the festivities, gifts, or just getting together with family and friends. Or maybe you travel somewhere special.
It may also mean a season of sadness, hardship, and loneliness for some of you.
I’ve been through a few rough Christmas seasons.
As a child living in a chaotic, abusive, and alcoholic home, Christmas meant opening our presents, the parents getting drunk and not knowing what was going to happen next. It could be peaceful or explosive.
Years later, in an unhappy, alcoholic, abusive marriage, it meant the same. Not always; I just never knew.
When I finally decided to reach out for help for my co-dependency and my own alcoholism, the journey to Take Back My Life! began and with it a life of endless possibility.
And through that healing, I created new holiday traditions. One year I spent the day with girlfriends at the beach where I lived who, like me, were alone. Good food, a long walk, and plenty of conversation, I felt happy, fulfilled. I wasn’t anxiously waiting for bad things to happen, I expected only the good. And, it came to me.
Even when it meant the first Christmas celebration without my dad, I allowed myself to feel the pain of his absence and relish in the joy of being with my kids and my sisters. We found solace and happiness in being together even in the sadness.
Wherever you are this holiday season, I pray that you will find love and joy. I pray that you will not face the loneliness or grief alone. Reach out for help.
Life is too short, and you only have this one; make it happen for you.
Merry Christmas with love.