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Midlife Madness Or Cosmic Nudge?
Everyone hopes their marriage will last forever, everyone hopes their job future will be secure, everyone hopes they will age gracefully, everybody wants the safety and security of knowing what is happening in their lives and when it is happening. And because of this we sit comfortable in our life chair the one we have sat in for the twenty years of our marriage the one we sagged into every day for ten years after work the one we curled up into when things went wrong or something happened with the children. But what happens when the chapters are rewritten? What happens when the person you slept next to for twenty years moves his/her pillow to another house? What happens when the boss who went to your child’s wedding decides in with the new out with the old? What happens when the body you have traveled with all these years no longer functions as it should? What happens then? Mid life madness.
When you are with someone for a good chunk of your life you lose some of your identity this happens to even the most authentic of people. How could you not begin to define yourself by the roles you play wife mother? Who you were seems less important than who you have become. So when your partner decides to leave it is like an amputation. All those things you did together now you have to do them alone. Odd jobs once delegated to the best candidate now rest solely on your shoulders. Where once decisions were jointly made resources pooled and responsibilities shared now all roads point to you.
Midlife madness has signs posted
For the road to self condemnation turn here
Travel this highway of guilt and shame
To fuel up on doubt and drain your self esteem pull over here
And yes there are pit stops of regrets and lost dreams
The greatest test of any human is change. Change is that moment when the world as we know it ceases to exits. It is when we are challenged to expand our thinking, it is when we are challenged to define who we are in every sense of the word and it is when we get to see how far we have come and how far we have yet to go in terms of our growth and healing.
When we are young change is all around us all of the time as we struggle to define ourselves and our role in the world it is an accepted part of life. But as we get older changes are less frequent we build up a world that is safe secure and comfortable. We have a game plan that extends into retirement we have a partner who is going to be there to celebrate the coming of old age we have financial security a house a circle of close friends that support us. Or that’s our vision of our future. When change comes and throws all of this into disarray we enter what I call midlife madness.
Let’s look at the first scenario as it seems the most common. Your once loving partner who swore to love you for better or worst has a midlife crisis and decides he/she does not love you anymore and in a blink of an eyelid up and leaves.
For some women who left the workplace to raise the family this means loss of an income and financial security. For others it means loss if identity for who are you if you are not Mrs. Somebody. Some find friends split between whose corner to go too stop calling and the big card also comes out the age card because now your age is a neon sign saying your old who will want you now.
Some women will feel like they are drowning and grab onto the first person who comes along any port in a storm as they say…usually this results in the same situation arising at a later date. When a relationship ends you really need to take a breath and a break. Look at what role you may have played this is not to excuse a moral lapse by your partner etc but to look at what things within the relationship may have not been as healthy as they should have been. Look at communication openness the sharing of emotions and feelings shared dreams were they really shared? What this does is gives you a better understanding of what you want your next relationship to look like and what you need to contribute to make it the way you want. If you had communication problems in your first relationship maybe the lesson to take from that is how you can get to a point where you are able to speak your truth and listen to others. If you had intimacy issues maybe the lesson is one of priorities and making time for each other. The objective is to look at whatever happened as a life lesson what can I take from this experience that will help me grow and move forward as a person.
Age is a beautiful thing and finding a new partner to share your life with is not connected with the amount of wrinkles on your face it is deeply rooted in the beliefs you hold about yourself. Women who are confident about who they are who are as happy in their own company as they are in someone else’s who have explored their souls accepted themselves warts and all will attract a partner who has the same qualities. The secret is not in someone else telling you how beautiful you are it is in being able to stand naked in front of a mirror and being able to look into your own eyes and know deep within you are a divine creation and your life can be all that you want it to be with or without somebody in it.
A partner leaving us after many years of marriage highlights all we have lost over the years our youth maybe a few dreams and ambitions it highlights how much of who we were as young adults has faded away and reminds us of our immortality. There are a few things you need to ponder
o Loss any loss needs to be grieved allow yourself to feel what you need to feel and give yourself time to do so
o Before you find somebody else take the time to find yourself first otherwise the relationship will be based on an illusion
o Strength is often our greatest weakness its okay to reach out for help
o The greatest relationship you will ever had is with yourself become friends with your body nurture your spirit and creativity and feed your mind
o Beauty is always in the eye of the beholder and the Higher Power who ever you perceive him/her to be sees you as a most magnificent creation
The thing that causes most of our anxieties is money when your partner leaves he/she may take with them your means of survival. But this fear of the future can also occur when you are made redundant after many years of employment when the boss decides he can get a graduate for half the wage he pays you. Ageism is a fact of life. Not surprisingly most women faced with these scenarios go into beat myself up mode. I am not good enough I am not young enough I am too stupid too old to learn no one will want me now they allow doubt to crawl all over them and every self suffocating message they ever heard comes out to haunt them. The threat of debt hangs over their heads and the walls start closing as the clock ticks.
Here are some things to ponder
o Money is a tool learn how to use it go to a financial counselor
o Possessions versus stress and anxiety. Is living in a big house worth your health? It is worth noting nobody has ever slipped a Mercedes Benz through the pearly gates but you can bet they never leave without telling somebody they love them.
o Learn how to prioritize
o There is more than one pathway to any given destination. Do not limit yourself to things you believe are in your comfort zone look at all possibilities.
o Whatever job you take to begin with doesn’t have to set in concrete as the only thing you will ever do in your life. Be open and the universe will provide.
o You are never too old to learn new skills or go in a different direction. You simply have to throw your limitations out the window
o Who you are shows walk into an interview believing they can find somebody better and it will show and the chances are they will find somebody else.
o If a door closes then consider the possibility you were never meant to walk through it
Losing a partner or a job may or may not happen but one thing is certain time will always make its mark on our bodies. It is not up to me to tell anyone to simply allow age to come gracefully and to surrender the things of youth. Some have no wish to do this. However it is wise to point out if your concept of who you are is tied into appearances then you will never truly find peace as time will always be one step ahead. It is a personal perspective for some there comes a day when you look into the mirror and do not recognize the body you see. You stand there stunned thinking when did I get old? With age also comes medical issues the things we once did are no longer possible. It is all about acceptance and being at peace with our bodies our physical appearance.
The most beautiful woman can be the most unappealing and vise versa. Who you are determines your beauty not what you look like. Do what you feel is right for you. Doing something that is special and feels nurturing to your spirit is always healthy. If that is getting a massage or going to the spa go for it. If it is getting into a bathing suit and not worrying about a few extra pounds that weren’t there last summer good for you. If you are doing something because it is something that brings you joy or makes you happy again good for you but if you are doing it to fit a stereotype of beauty projected by the media etc or you think the only way somebody will love you is if you recreate yourself physically then you are in for disappointment. Love begins with self then extends outwards.
Change comes to everybody at some stage in their lives it doesn’t have to be the event that destroys your life but the event that gives birth to a new life for you. You do not have to move on quickly there is time and you should make time to grieve the loss of a job of a partner even grieve the passing of years and youth lost. Then you should forgive anybody or anything that needs forgiving. Anger and blame are anchors to a past life let them go if you want to move forward forgive accept let go and move forward. Forgive yourself let go of might haves could haves should haves they are redundant. You can not rewrite the past but you can shape the future. Find yourself again what you like do not like what your dreams are or were. Spend some time alone. Look for the lessons learn from them to build a stronger foundation. Absolutely believe everything will be okay. Throw shame guilt pride out the window and while you are there throw away self recrimination too. Ask for help ask for help ask for help ask for help. What does not asking for help do? Apart from keep you where you are? Healthy people looking to build healthy lives will ask for help will accept it and will use it to build the life they want.
Midlife madness or simply the Higher Power saying time to for a change. Either way it doesn’t have to be overwhelming or full of anxiety take a breath take a step back take another breath then take a step forward you can do it what a wonderful opportunity for something new and great to enter your life. You are a traveler on life’s highway and the journey has just begun.
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