I recently celebrated a birthday that someone said was, “The halfway point.” That feels good, right? I laughed at the time, but then…well…I started to think.
See, there are some changes I’ve been wanting to make in my life, and I know I need to give them more attention. Some goals were: 1) Be more positive; 2) grow my coaching business; 3) put myself out there more on social media to tell my story and connect with others.
I’ve been wanting to take action on them, and when this “halfway point” arrived, the sense of urgency went up.
The Urge To Make a New Start
I wouldn’t exactly say I’m in a classic midlife crisis. I don’t want to drop it all, quit my job, buy a shiny sports car, and zoom into oblivion. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, mind you, but I’m pretty happy in the here and now.
It’s more of an urge I have to make some changes – right in the life I have. If you’ve read my other posts or heard me talk, you know I’m big into growing personally, and…well…the time just feels right to sweep up a little. To balance the teeter-totter. To step more fully into my midlife walking shoes. But where to start?
I sat down and came up with a plan – a plan that leaves lots of room for adjustment!
3 Simple Steps for Starting a New Life Path or Reaching a New Goal
Before we get to the steps, let’s dispel a myth: A “new life path” doesn’t mean starting completely over. We all have a life in motion filled with strengths and weaknesses. We all have tools we’ve collected to help us through. You should use those! What I’m presenting here is an exercise to get you started on a different path – not to dig out and pave a whole new highway.
1. Make a list…an HONEST list. Ah, lists. They’re my best friend for good reason. They force us to write (or type) what we want or need so that it’s all visible, tangible, and real. I made a list of goals to pursue as I head into the second half of life, and made sure they were in line with my life in general. I know that sounds boring, but it’s important. You won’t find, “Be a linebacker” on there because the journey to that would kill me. Instead, you’ll find “Grow your coaching business.” I took steps to do that by playing with pricing, advertising, and more. It was something I could budget for, and the steps weren’t going to break me. Write out what you want. Review what you wrote. Then, go inside…go deep…and think about why the goal is on your list, and why it matters.
2. Take one small step. If we’ve gone decades without taking a step towards a goal (such as writing a book or exercising regularly), it can be hard to jump in. So don’t jump in! Dip your toe in, instead. I wanted to be more positive, so I made it a goal. Instead of plastering a fake smile on my face and punishing myself for frowns, I started by catching myself when I was having negative thoughts. I increased mindfulness around negativity in my day, and a natural outgrowth of that is I now know how yucky it makes me feel. It was all the motivation I needed to put a real smile on my face. Start small. Over time, big will arrive.
3. Hold yourself accountable (or have someone else do it!). It’s easy to take a step, then retreat into the familiar. One of my goals is to get out there more on social media (including TikTok and Instagram), because I like connecting with people in that way. But if you’ve tried to do it, you know it’s hard, because we put something out, the response is mixed (or non-existent), and we give up or slack off. And that’s okay! But I’ve asked my wife to help keep me motivated. I run posts by her before putting them up. I tell more people about my accounts so I’m motivated to post more. Create a calendar. Ask a friend to check in. Stay accountable for change.
Starting a new life or setting new goals can be daunting, but it can also be fun! Go easy on yourself and stay organized and accountable. Start with simple things, and you may just find they can add up to huge differences in the life you have right here, right now.