Paula, Time Carries Me Forward, But I Don’t Feel 65!

Time Family Aging

How we feel about aging is a choice we make.

Time can be so mysterious. It looks different to us, depending on our age, and on what we believe about it.

That’s what struck me when I read a recent e-mail from one of our e-zine subscribers. Her particular challenge is about turning 65 — and her quandary illuminates a universal experience.

Time, since it’s always flowing forward and carrying us with it through transition-after-transition, certainly keeps us on our toes!

Here’s what she wrote:

Dear Paula,

I am struggling with getting older (I recently turned 65).

No matter what I do, I can’t seem to see myself as someone who’s 65 years old. I don’t like feeling this way, because I feel so out-of-touch with myself. Help!

Samantha in Denver

So here’s what I shared with Samantha…

Dear Samantha – I can certainly relate! When I celebrated my 65th birthday I found it to be a challenging life transition.

First, there was the simple matter of being 65 years old.

What is “65,” anyway?

I immediately noticed that my image of what “65” looked like was very different from who I am and how I live my days.

We carry images of “65” from our family history, from books we’ve read and movies we’ve seen – from old TV shows – you name it.

Those images are embedded and unconscious. We’re not aware of them until we bump into them, as you probably have.

Now what?

So, when my image of 65 encountered the fact of my 65th birthday, I had some choices to make. First, I needed to differentiate fact from fiction. Then, I had to decide whether I’d try to deflect the facts or I assimilate them and make them my own. So, I’d ask myself questions like:

  • What does 65 look like to me?
  • How does that affect the way I see myself?
  • Where is that realistic and where is it off-base?

Okay, how?

So I chose to sort out fact from fiction and then make friends with the facts. I accepted them and let them sink in. Getting used to the idea really helped.

As I did this, I paid attention to my feelings. I made note of any areas that were particularly “hot.”

I think many people have an inclination to view feelings as challenges or inconveniences. This is another choice-point.

You’ll be amazed at what happens when you open to your feelings. This was my choice: I welcomed ALL of my feelings and chose to view them as doorways to deepening self-knowledge.

So I made note of my feelings and came back to each, to explore and deepen my understanding, as I got comfortable with my 65-year-old self.

I hope that you find this helpful, and would love to hear what you think.

Best,

Paula

What if you could find another hour every week? You can. For more Time Finding resources, you are invited to sign up for my complimentary Finding Time Success Kit which includes my popular, weekly Finding Time Tips.

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