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How to Reinvent Yourself at Midlife?

Have you looked at yourself lately in the mirror? Oh, not the hurried to peek in the mirror to comb one's hair, apply a tint of lipstick or the hurried dabbing of face powder. The "look in the mirror", I'm talking about is the one that sees right through one's self. The "look in the mirror" which leads us to ask our midlife self, "where to now?", "what's in store for me, now that I have spent a half-century in this world?".

Fifty years have gone by, what do you want to do for the next 50 years (God willing we live to a 100). Have you thought about that? Or are you content to continue what is keeping you busy nowadays? REINVENT. Yes, you have to reinvent yourself. Merriam Webster defines reinvent as to remake or redo completely. Cambridge English Dictionary defines reinvent to produce something new that is based on something that already exists. I prefer the latter definition of reinvent. It applies fairly well with how you will reinvent yourself. You exist, you live, you survive the first 50 years of your life, from birth, childhood, puberty, adulthood and menopause. Do you want to reach the last phase of your life, feeling with regret that, you should have done this or did that concept? Do you want to feel incomplete, now that you're old and grey? Live life to the fullest, they say! There's so much wisdom in that short phrase. There's congruity between reinventing and living life to the fullest. If we built the courage to do something new in our life, to learn new things, to discover the whole wide world then you can say, you had lived your life to the fullest.

Now, how to reinvent yourself at midlife? Focus on these three areas:

Self care - the past years had been spent taking care of your kids, your husband, your ailing or ageing parents. You had so little time for yourself, maybe a 30 minutes bath complete with scraping yourself with a loofah is the best that you could say was your "me time". Maybe the best gear you had on, is your old reliable sweats or house dress. The best make up you have on your face is a tinted lip balm and good old baby powder. Now, is the time, to forego the letting go of yourself. It is time to take care of yourself. If you don't, who will do it for you? Ditch the sweat pants, torn shorts, torn shirt, house dress for nice fitting pants, a more fashionable, cosy top or a classic, hip dress. Go on, try it, you'd see the difference. You'll see a new you, dressing up a bit makes you surer of yourself, you ooze with a new kind of self-confidence. Try putting on more cosmetics, instead of just plain lip balm or baby powder. Admit it, at midlife, our skin is not as poreless or as supple than before. We need to enhance it to show the glowing side of our skin. Try on a new pair of ballet shoes, closed toe flats or cute sandals, instead of wearing flip flops all the time. The point is, to take extra time to look and feel good about your self, to live again and get out of your ennui. It is the time to live healthy, by eating a well-balanced diet. Consumed more fruits & veggies, skip on the pork & beef and chew more of fish and skinless chicken. Take brisk walks early in the morning or in the evenings, whichever suits your schedule best. If you have a bike, go biking around your neighborhood. Exercising releases the hormone endorphin, which releases a happy feeling and being in love with life and self.

Work and career - work and career are usually associated with 9-5 desk jobs or office related work. Stay at home moms have full-time work and career, they are managers, treasurers/auditors, doctor/nurse all rolled into one of their very own "family business". You may find your current work as no longer fulfilling, wait, don't quit yet. If your finances are not that secured to go without pay for several months, stick with your present work. You don't have to be a martyr or be miserable, but you also have to be realistic. If you quit your work now, without a good plan, you will just add stress and anxiety for your self and for your family. Instead of wallowing in self-pity, this is the best time to reinvent your self in terms of your career. Reinvention is not just for the young but for working midlife women too. Maybe, getting another degree is not plausible at the moment if you have kids finishing school too. What you can do is to take short courses to level up your skills. The government has established the TESDA online program that enables you to study at your own pace, at your own time. It is worth mentioning that TESDA online program is available for free, there is no tuition fee required to access this course. After taking the short course, this is the best time to venture to another field of work. If you live a healthy life, you will live longer and you'll be able to work 15 or more years past the traditional retirement of 60 years of age. In that time period, you have the opportunity to live a new life with a new job or career. Midlife is not the time to be afraid of the future, it is the time to get excited about the new prospects that life will bring.

Spiritual life - life encumbrances might have driven you to work head on to be able to support the financial needs of the family. You are so busy with the daily grind, that you don't have time for your spiritual life. That is the greatest mistake, not to foster one's spiritual life. The daily stresses that come with taking care of the family, relationship with our bosses and co-employees, financial concerns, getting sick leads to depression. We read about popular figures and celebrities taking their own lives because of depression but did you know that WHO states that close to 800,000 people die due to suicide and those at risk are people who experience life stresses such as financial concerns, break up in a relationship or those suffering from chronic pain & illness. This is the ultimate reason you have to cultivate your spiritual life. We can not exist without God, life is not all about money, popularity and position. At the end of the day, it is you and God, it is through Him and Him alone who can give you solace in your darkest hours calms the tempest that batters your soul. God sees everything so end your worries, God is merciful, He will help you. "For I know the plans, I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29-11".

Midlife is not the end but the culmination of new beginnings. Go ahead live your life to the fullest, reinvent yourself.

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Middle life is beautiful.

Till next time. God bless.



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