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I’m 65. I’ve got runway left in my life. I’ve also come to believe, I am relevant. Why is this important to me?
During lockdown, I saw a dermatologist for what I thought would be a simple mole removal. It turned my life upside down. Turns out it was malignant melanoma. Within two weeks I was operated upon, and recovery consisted of sitting/laying still for three weeks. It gave me lots of time to think and reflect.
Reflecting on my life and learnings led me to consider the possibility I wasn’t the only woman who received a double whammy – stay home because of the Covid pandemic; stay still because of cancer. Let’s be clear – I haven’t had Covid – thank goodness. I have; however, experienced cancer.
I think this relates to many mid-life women with whom I’ve spoken. I started thinking about our adult daughters and how they were coping with lockdowns. I started thinking about friends with whom I could no longer enjoy face to face coffee. I reflected on my inability to go to a gym or gym classes for my workouts. I considered the types of meals I was consuming and how it was impacting my body and my mood. I considered my friends and colleagues in faraway places and how they too might be coping.
Much went through my mind. One of the things I recalled was a conversation with my mom who told me, many years ago, about a decision she made when she was 60. She made a decision. A simple decision really. A hard decision to maintain. My mom decided, “this is my time.”
I like so many women I know and love, believe women experience ageism differently than men.
Men whose hair is grey are considered distinguished. Women whose hair is grey are considered old. Men who gain some weight camouflage it with blazers. Women are required to maintain a trim figure so they are still considered ‘ageless’. Men have earned more money than women throughout their career because they did not take time off to bear children. Women took time – whether short or long periods – to bear children and perhaps dedicate time to raising those children. They missed out on time where they could contribute to their pensions and potentially raises associated with new roles. These are but a few examples. Hence, who I am now is defined by many of these thoughts I gathered, discussed, and disseminated to other women. I made a decision.
I want to help women believe they are relevant and they have runway left in their lives. I want to create a community of over 1,000,000 mid-life women who uplift each other, support each other, and ensure we all believe we are relevant. Those 1,000,000 mid-life women can expand their communities and help other women believe in their own relevance and their runways at and after mid-life. My career as a leadership, strategy and team building consultant equipped me for my new venture. I love to facilitate and share knowledge. I love to watch others grow and flourish. I love to watch women succeed at whatever is important to them.
I reached out to women throughout the globe. I started with my contacts and they referred me to their colleagues and friends. Patterns emerged in the conversations. And, ultimately, a Roadmap2Relevance was created. I used the emerging Roadmap2Relevance in my coaching practice with women. We refined it together. We tested it. We revised it. Now, it exists as a foundation for helping mid-life women find their relevance again.
Mid-life women, myself included, are meant to shine their light so they know their own power and share that power and wisdom with others.
As we hit mid-life, we experience different things. Our physiology changes as we enter and go
through menopause. Our mental health may be impacted by menopause as well. And, we begin to look at our own runway.
So often, our circumstances drive our decisions and actions. Our desire to step into our power
at mid-life and beyond, can generate new actions and different thoughts
than those we held for our first few decades here on earth.
Have you heard these phrases before?
– You’re not ready for that.
– The company isn’t ready to stand behind your idea.
– It’s not your turn.
– No one like you has done it before.
Now that we’re in mid-life and beyond, those phrases no longer guide us. Instead, this is our
time to stand up and step into our power so we and all others around us and even those
who haven’t met us know … WE Are ALL Relevant … and we have much to still contribute.
© 2023 – Yvonne Bridges
How do you get to a place where you really do feel relevant?
I’d like to share with you this free workbook to give you a process that moves you toward your personal relevance. It can be used over and over again. And, you will find yourself feeling relevant as you use the steps.
Interested? To move toward your relevance in mid-life, push the button below and I will send you this workbook.