I was surfing the Internet the other day and found this interesting article on the Harvard Business Review: “We Need Mature Leaders”. And a sentence particularly struck me: “Maturity is experience-driven perspective and awareness of your emotional patterns and triggers.”
I couldn’t have found a better way to express why maturity is a privileged time of one’s life! And yet so many people believe that when they reach their 50s, they have no opportunities, they have nothing else to offer and give up they dreams and passions. I have had the honour to co-author a book published by Professional Woman Publishing, “The Female Leader: Empowerment, Confidence And Passion”.with a chapter devoted to the 50+ that I want to offer here in the following weeks to you, my readers.
To write this chapter, I have interviewed amazing women who have re-invented themselves , built their successful businesses and changed their lives in their 50s: Beverly Monical, Faith Barnard, Sue Price, Adele Pandolfi.
My 50s are a time of self-descovery to me. As it always happen when you embark in a journey within yourself, you inevitably face challenges and are called to change something about yourself and the way you react to circumstances and situations. However, you also realize how many beautiful things about yourself you have taken for granted or you have never noticed. These things characterize maturity, and are often qualities that great leaders have.
“I feel I’m in the best place I’ve probably been in my life. 50s to me is an opportunity for you to step into the fact that you’ve had time to grow and know yourself. It’s new beginnings” ~ Faith Barnard
However, despite all I went through , I feel very well, as I have never felt before. All these tests – as I like to consider them – forced me to engage in some intensive inner work: time to look within, take stock of what my life journey had been so far and start afresh, deciding how I wanted the next chapter in my life to be. Looking within yourself is not easy: it brings out emotions, buried pain, unresolved guilt, regret, dreams that you probably gave up a long time ago. But, in my case , it also brought about a pleasant and unexpected surprise: rediscovering myself. That was the start of a new beginning.
As everything else in life, the way you live your 50s (and beyond) is a question of choice: you may choose to get overwhelmed by the changes and transitions that this period of your life inevitably entails, or you may see them as precious opportunities to unlock or free parts of yourself that, for any reason, you may have chosen to deny or forget about.
I have decided to live this part of my life as a second chance for me to build and live the life I really want, honoring my truth and my inner desires. And I have discovered that many other women have chosen this path too: my global business put me in contact with women from different countries and with very different cultural, professional and personal backgrounds who like me are re-discovering themselves and going through the typical life transitions of this period of life. I interviewed them to see what turning 50 meant to them and was not surprised at all to find common patterns in our individual mid-life re-discovery journeys.
Rediscovering yourself at 50 and beyond seems to be a necessity because you are no longer the person you were 10, 20 or 30 years ago. And this new person has been carrying within a lot of conditioning she does not need anymore. At 50 (and beyond) you have the chance to get rid of it, possibly forever.
I have identified 4 phases in this mid-life rediscovering journey that I call Awareness, Understanding, Detachment, and Rebooting.
(From “50 And Beyond: Re-Discovering Yourself”, The Female Leader: Empowerment, Confidence And Passion”)
I will examine each individual phase in the following weeks, so keep visiting my blog!
I would love to hear from you: What does starting from scratch or re-discovering yourself mean for you?
To your prosperous re-descovery