Reaching my sixties came with the realization that I had better get moving and change some old habits if I really want to live the life I wanted to. For me, it has never been wealth and acquisition. It has always been about people, art and creativity and spirituality. I had raised my daughter, worked hard and helped a lot of people through my profession. But like so many women I  always put myself last on the list. I decided that maybe it was time to start putting myself first, this also meant recognizing my worth, appreciating myself.

Easier said than done. Old habits die hard! It takes time…

One of the first things I did to reconnect with my goals and my talents was to make lists. The purpose was to get in touch with myself. I kept it in a handy place so I could add to it continually and I took my time doing it.

I started writing down:

  • all the things I loved doing, my hobbies, passions, interests
  • the things I found myself always doing for some reason or another, I am always helping and giving advice I just do it naturally
  • skills, things that I have spent time on learning or practising
  • character traits, put down positive ones (this is important to look at yourself in a positive way)
  • talents, things you can just do because you have a talent for it
  • things that I can do but actually don’t really like doing, I seem to end up doing them anyway

Then I started to look at the list for patterns, groups of things, some things belonged together…

There were things there that I did without ever thinking I could get paid for it I just did them because I loved doing them.

There were other things that I had done my whole life, my passions, like textiles, beads and art.

But there were also things that I did that I really didn’t want to do anymore, I did them because I could do them, but was it really something I wanted to do or pleasing others?. This was quite a list too.

Then I started to use this information I had gleaned to really work out what I wanted to do, not what I thought I should do/ or had to do. The ” now I am supposed to…” 

It took me quite some time, it was a whole process. I kept this big book by my settee and when I noticed something that belonged on one of these lists I wrote it down.

I did this 5 years ago at a critical point when I had lost my job and reached 62 years of age. Things slowly started moving in the right direction because I  finally got myself working on what I wanted. I was in charge. 

Now I am living the life that I created for myself and continue to create. I have freedom of decision and movement; I have a balance of doing things in society for others while keeping my creativity growing. I enjoy doing and experiencing the things that I love.

I found this very useful to do, maybe it could work for you too, or at least bring you closer to living life the way you want to.