Reinventing Yourself at Any Age
By: Bonny Osterhage
Necessity is the mother of invention—and reinvention. Maybe you’ve found yourself suddenly single. Perhaps you are in a job that no longer brings you joy. Or it could be that you are simply a woman who wants more out of life. Whatever the reason, re-invention is normal, natural, and nothing to fear. As humans, we are continually growing and evolving and it’s not uncommon to discover that the things that served us well during one stage of life, might not work so well for us later on. However, even when it’s necessary, it can be daunting to make a big life change, especially if you aren’t sure where to start. Here are four tips for reinventing yourself regardless of age or stage of life. You grow girl!
Pursue your passion.
Take a moment to reflect on what really, truly, makes you happy. What are you doing when you feel like the best version of yourself? Is it when you are enjoying a favorite hobby? Is it when you are volunteering or helping others? Then ask yourself how much time you spend actually doing those things and adjust accordingly. You might find that your hobbies or interests are actually a professional calling. As someone who left a high paying, corporate position to pursue a career in the fitness industry in my mid-40s, I feel like have some experience in this area.
Silence your inner critic.
Often the one thing that is holding us back is the negative committee in our heads. Turn off the voices that tell you that you aren’t good enough, smart enough, or talented enough to try something new. That’s just fear talking. Replace those negative thoughts with positive affirmations. Ask for support from the people around you. Be brave enough to go after what you want, even if that means taking small, calculated steps forward rather than one giant, risky leap. Progress is progress.
Ask for it.
There is an old adage that says, “If you don’t ask, the answer is always no.” How do you know your company won’t let you work from home a couple of days a week? How do you know that you can’t get a startup loan for a new business venture? How do you know that the article you wrote won’t get published? You don’t, unless you ask! If the answer is no, go back to the drawing board—or ask someone else. Just don’t give up. Did you know J.K Rowling’s “Harry Potter” manuscript was rejected 12 times? I think we all know how well that turned out!
Don’t be afraid to fail.
In fact, remove the word “fail” from your vocabulary and replace it with the word, “learn.” Whether it’s a change in hair color, a change in career, or a move to a new city, not all reinvention works out right away. However, that doesn’t mean you failed. It means you learned that blondes don’t necessarily have more fun, or that a fast-paced, urban lifestyle just isn’t your cup of tea. Figuring out who you aren’t and what you don’t want is just as important as figuring out who you are and what you do want—maybe even more so. And don’t be surprised if what you want changes again…and again. That’s why it’s called reinvention.