I just read this awesome article called, "What you learn in your 40's" by Pamela Drukerman and decided, heck, I can make my own list of what I learned in my 40's...(Mind you I am only 41, but, a very mature 41 I'd say....so, here it goes...
1. I learned that having lots and lots of friends is not any better than having a few great friends. Definitely, quality over quantity when it comes to friendships in our 40s. I find myself pairing down my facebook friend list, rather than trying to build it up.
2. When people reveal themselves to you now, I believe them. I not only believe them, I remember it and act on it. You can be an meanie once to me, but, to get a second chance after an offence, it is almost impossible.
3. I stay FAR away from characters. By that I mean anyone that just talks for talk's sakes, or people who care far more about their social image than simply being themselves. "Characters" have a way of prioritizing on their image and should not be trusted, ever. Their insecurities are so intense that any day you can find yourself under a bus.....not a real bus....
4. I listen to whatever tunes I like now. Years back I might have been seeking tunes that carried a certain embedded identity, but these days my playlists are so eclectic, there is no rhyme or reason to them...One thing's for sure, nothing stays on that list unless I love it.
5. I see young people making mistakes and saying things that sound utterly out of this world and I try hard not to say a peep and just let them be. I was young once too, and man, the things that would come out of my mouth make me cringe to this day......In my youth, I might have wanted to correct them, but now, I simply try my best to allow the young to be young, say the crazy things they will say and and pretty much let them be....correcting them will not do any good, plus it would take energy to do that
6. External validation is not so urgent in my 40's. I have found ways to validate my own successes personally and feel very independent of others', proverbial, "pat on the back". You can say what you want to say, or not.....but, I am much more emotionally self-sufficient and will work hard to follow my own path.
7. I am a much better listener. Possibly due to the fact that I am not jumping around like a chihuahua anymore looking for validation, I am now able to just sit back and allow people to share their stories with me. I love to hear people's stories, they are like mini-novels full of surprising twists and turns. Unfortunately, I have found there are very few real good listeners out there. Surprisingly, even close friends forget to ask questions of one another.
8. Cool is what I say it is, totally subjective. Cool is no longer dictated by my female buddies, or magazines, or TV, or celebrities. Cool has its own unique flavor seasoned by me....no one else.
9. My politics have become a lot more solid and clear in my 40's. Whereas in our youth we fear offending others with our strong opinions, in our forties, we secretly want to repel all people who disagree with us away from our circle so as to make our lives drama-free. General rule of thumb here is, "You don't like my politics? then unfriend me, walk away....run away....please! This old dog ain't changing".
10. In our 40's we vote with everything we do. We vote with our friendships, we vote with what we teach our children about the world, we vote with where we shop, what we eat, what we wear, whom we buy our clothes from, even where we work or whom we choose to grow old with. I am not sure about men, but with women, there is a certain fearlessness that takes over in our 40s. We become more pointed and purposeful in everything we do.
I can pretty much claim I am having a blast!!
What have you learned in your 40's?