The thing to remember is: if you are here, you still have a chance to live the life you truly desire. What makes a lot of us hesitate to change our lives after a certain age is our social anxiety. We fear what our peers may think. If we go back to college at 40, we might be twice the age of some of our classmates. We may feel embarrassed to be the “grandpa” or “old lady” in the class. We also fear addressing our own insecurities and past errors. Starting over is more than taking a class or switching careers.
Starting over in life is essentially admitting that the path we were on is no longer suitable for our most important needs. This should be actually be celebrated for it is an indication of wisdom. We realize we made mistakes. We realize maybe we were not as smart as we thought. The reason it is not celebrated as often is because there is the societal pressure to have everything figured out by age 27. But for those that hit the reset button at 30, 35, 40 or older, there is something critical to remember.
You and I have lived through the mistakes and slip-ups. We know first hand how it feels. Therefore, if we are serious about changing our lives, we know exactly what the dangers and threats to our progress are. We know our own weaknesses. We understand our behavior better at 35 than we did at 25. The things that impressed us in our youth are meaningless to us now. What we took for granted a decade ago has become sacred.
For the person who starts over and has a bit of anxiety about beginning again, consider this: How many people have such an opportunity? How many people wish they could change their lives but they are locked into their circumstances? And think about yourself. After all the opportunities you blew, all of the mishaps and all of the screw-ups, you still have a chance to change your life. It is as if you were granted a second (or third) life. That is a blessing. I know it is for me!
When you start over, yes you are older and the mountain to your new goal may be steep, but now you have the proper equipment to climb that mountain.
I have taken many paths and made many mistakes in life. In my career and in relationships there are plenty of things I could have done better. However, I cannot focus on my past mistakes. Recently I re-enrolled in school. I can only be thankful that I have the opportunity to take steps in the right direction. At the end of the day I must be accountable for my life. I refuse to let age or social stigmas stop me from getting to where I need to be.