It is my birthday week – turning 55 years old on March 1. Funny, I don’t feel that old. I am proud of what I can do at my age – run 5K races, ride my bike great distances, lift weights, start a new business, hug my friends and family. I have been to 5 continents, 44 countries and 41 states, and plan to add to that count.
There is so much that I can do that I seldom look at what I cannot do, or not desire to do. I do not care to run a marathon, but I could try. I do not want to climb Mt. Everest, but I could try. I do not want to scuba dive, but I could try. I do not want to do a Tik Tok dance, but I could try. I have choices of what to do or not. I do not let my age limit these choices or let someone decide for me.
Author, Greg McKeown states “The ability to choose cannot be taken away or even given away—it can only be forgotten.” We should not let our age or circumstances make decisions for us. I look at my options then determine if that is something for me. The other piece of that quote is not to forget about our ability to choose. In life, we choose whether or not to learn and grow our knowledge and skills. I believe that when we quite choosing to learn, we slowly start to die inside. I choose to learn and live – no matter my age.
When I was 45 years old, I decided that it was time to learn to swim. I took swim lessons when I was younger but had not mastered the techniques or ability to float. I wanted to be able to snorkel with my family on vacations. At 45 years old, I took the leap to take swim lessons. Since then, I have snorkeled in many places, including Phuket, Thailand where sharks and sea turtles swam past me. The ability to swim has allowed me to participate in triathlons. Wow! If you would have told me years ago that I would be swimming plus participating in triathlons, I would have not believe you. Because I stepped outside my comfort zone and into the water, many new opportunities came to me.
If I had limited my choices and stayed in my comfort zone, I would still be sitting on the boat while my family experienced amazing underwater sea life. At 45 years of age, I decided that my desire to snorkel and swim with my family was greater than my fear of the water.
This year, I am challenging myself to master a crow pose in Yoga. It requires strength, focus and believing in myself. I know that there will be many falls before finding that balance. I am not giving up until I can conquer it. I will share photos along the way.
What about you? What limitations are you placing on yourself due to your age or a fear? Consider what is on the outside of your comfort zone. There is life to be lived, new experiences, success in going after your dream. It is your decision to make.
Decide to take that first step. Success is not immediate. There will be many steps on your way to fulfilling that dream. The first attempts may result in failure but do not give up. Acknowledge the difficulties then learn from them. You will learn a lot on the journey to success.
Have an accountability partner – let others know your dream so they can encourage you along the way. I am here for you. I believe in you and know that you can and will succeed in those things that you desire the most.
Don’t be limited by your age. Do not let others take away your ability to decide.
“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson