Thoughts on Aging: Red Hat or Grumpy Old Bitch?

  • Laugh everyday – I don’t want to be one of those people with lines down the side of my mouth because I didn’t laugh or smile enough. Maybe I can start a laugh group in my condo?
  • Take care of me – I don’t find it easy taking care of me in the family mix – everyone else’s needs always seem more important than my own, but I need to take care of me, and be a little selfish maybe? I’m talking health, sanity, pampering, alone time, me holidays, etc… I often escape inside my head when I need to be with “me,” but I need to create more of that time in a positive environment, on beautiful beaches or ancient places around the world. I need to do that, because it just makes me happy.
  • Pay attention to those around us – I just feel that as a world community we’re not paying enough attention to those in pain around us. We’re all on social media sites, running around, being busy, but those closest might be silently screaming: “oi! I need some help here!” Sometimes it’s just a non-judgemental ear to listen. I don’t think we’re listening or seeing as much as we can. I definitely want to make that more of a focus in my life and stop being busy doing nothing. Being a good friend is more important to me after all – and always has been.
  • The bravest face often hides the deepest pain – I’ve seen it time and time again, people who carry themselves with so much integrity and such a smile, only to find out later that they were suffering or did something dramatic that hurt themselves or others. I suppose this is the paying attention to those around us extended -that’s what community is.
  • Live in the moment – I find this HARD, but it is so true and a gift our children teach us every day. Being a ‘heady’ person, I am often there but not really present in what I’m doing or experiencing. I had a full-on experience with this the other week. I took the boys out for an ice-cream, and as they were quietly devouring their goodies, I completely left the room – not just thoughts, but vision as well. After a few moments I came back, with the room coming back into focus around me, which left me thinking: wohay - what the hell was that? That is the power of my mind, sucking me literally out of a little but important moment with my boys. I need to get more present, because I also know it is the key to happiness, but I do find it VERY hard. The present moment is all we have after all.
  • The value of my word – I am one of those people who still believes that their word is their bond. I don’t think this is valued as much anymore, and quite recently I was kicked in the arse again when someone gave me, and then broke, their word. It hurts every time, but I will continue to place importance in my word, accept that not everyone else can do this, and try and in-still in my boys that giving one’s word is a really important quality to have, even if other’s don’t value it. The important lesson is not to carry negative feelings within me when others don’t place similar importance on it.
  • Trust – Steve thinks I’m too trusting, in life and in business. It’s one of those qualities I’ve got that perhaps makes me ill-suited to the life of an entrepreneur? If someone says they’re going to do something, I believe them. I’m often “let down” and I don’t like it when I am, but I am going to hold onto my trusting-ness because it makes me a nicer person at the end of the day, and that’s much better than becoming an untrustworting cynic in my mind.
  • People are essentially good – People are essentially good and while you meet turds along the way, the majority of interactions are positive. I also think the turds are here to teach you something too, so even the turds are welcome in my life - because I obviously need to learn something to keep growing or I wouldn’t have encountered them. Let’s face it, nice people can’t always teach me the hard lessons. So no matter what, everyone is good.
  • Hang out with happy people – I love nothing more than being with people who just love every minute of life. It makes me happy. In fact, I was in a McDonald’s recently – I know, a very rare occurence for me – and I wasn’t feeling too happy that day. Anyways, the lady behind the counter beams for joy and welcomes me into the store. I get the boys some chips, and the whole time they’re munching away, I’m watching this incredible woman greet all of the customers, making everyone smile. This is not a typical experience in Asia, as people are more subdued, but this woman was phenomenal. As we were about to leave, I asked to speak to the manager. I said: do you appreciate how wonderful this woman is? She says, yes, she’s excellent at customer service. I said no, it’s much more than that. I came in here feeling unhappy and she has turned my whole mood around – she’s amazing.

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