Good, if you said “yes,” then you’re old enough to appreciate the lyrics I’m referring to as I approach 64. My birthday is next Wednesday, July 4. I’ll have reached that landmark age immortalized by the Beatles back in 1966–the year I graduated from White Plains High School. Actually being a 64 year old was unthinkable then. Voila, here it is.
This is a great time to take stock, especially since I’m about to leave for vacation and sign off for a month of rest, relaxation and renewal.
At a meeting yesterday someone mentioned enjoying life in the moment, not waiting for ‘someday.’ It reminded me of my friend Beth Spatz who became a mom a few months before I did. We shared our daughters’ infancies over tea and lunches. Beth invariably served these delicacies on her fine china and used her sterling silver flatware as well. “What would I save it for? This way, every meal is special.”
It was a concept that was foreign to me, but I quickly adopted as making total sense. Why wait? Why not use all of our best stuff now?
I don’t mean squandering resources. But I do mean enjoying life in the present moment. For me, this is a daily exercise in contentment and serenity.
I can easily have my head turned, as I did after a phone call yesterday. The young woman I spoke to was researching coaching as a profession and had gotten my name from a mutual friend. She is enrolled in an 8 week program that costs $2000. She mentioned that there were 2000 women similarly enrolled. By my calculations, that would be $4,000,000 for the proprietor of the program. My gremlins leapt to the front.
I immediately got into my not-good-enough, I-should-have-mastered-social-media-by-now-and-then-I’d-be-getting-2000-enrollees mode. My body became tense, my heart started to race and I felt a sense of disappointment and anguish.
Until I put my Soul Proprietor cap on and talked myself down from the ledge. Compare and despair, I remembered. “Jane, you love your life. You personally know and care about every client you work with. You have everything you need and want. You lack for nothing. Stay where you are, in this moment of peace and happiness that you’ve created for yourself.” Breathing helps a lot at this point, which I remind myself to do. Inhale. Relax. Exhale.
I also remind myself of the last lesson in my book. Lesson 101: Success is enjoying what you’ve worked hard to get and recognizing you’re there.
What I have accomplished with my work and life is my own definition of success. I know what I want to be doing. I’ve gotten to a point in my life where I am doing it. I recognize that I have what I want. As simple as that sounds, I don’t know many people who have achieved this.
If this message rings true for you, I’ll be back delivering it on August 1. I hope you have a wonderful July. Assert your independence in a joyful way, and celebrate the fact that we live in an amazing country where we have the freedom to do just that.