50 and Fabulous – 5 Things I Learned from Samantha Jones
When I was twenty, fifty seemed ancient!
Even in my thirties, I couldn’t imagine being fifty. As far as I was concerned, when I reached that age, I might as well throw in the towel – life would be OVER.
But somewhere along the way, as I got closer and closer, I began to realize that life at fifty could certainly promise more than sags and bags, graying locks and wrinkled skin. And interestingly enough, that wisdom didn’t come from anyone I know. It came from a fictional character well known to many, Samantha Jones.
While the HBO series, “Sex and the City” grew in popularity, the characters on the show aged as well, and “well” is the appropriate word to describe the way Sam Jones portrayed a single woman in her prime.
This month, I turned the big 5-0 and through the years I watched SATC, I learned a thing or two about (single) women growing older, wiser, more beautiful and strong. I’m not afraid anymore about aging or the second half of life. In fact, I’m more excited than ever about what the future holds!!
Thank you, Samantha Jones (and the cast writers) for reminding me that:
- Confidence is beautiful and only realized through a deep commitment to being oneself no matter what. We can’t be confident while trying to live according to other people’s rules and expectations. When we’re young, we don’t get this. We think we’re being our true authentic self but mostly we’re trying out personas based on what we see around us. It’s not until we’ve been disappointed a few times by our decisions that we begin to point ourselves inward toward what makes our hearts happy.
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2. Aging well has more to do with attitude than the actual number of candles on your birthday cake. If you believe that you are still attractive and desirable at any age, then others will perceive you that way too. A positive attitude is the most attractive quality of anyone, at any age. Stay active and busy with the things you love. Especially when you are single, you must intentionally create a life full of meaning. Don’t wait for someone else to make your life meaningful. Building meaningful relationships is important, but building a meaningful life will sustain you even in times when you find yourself alone.
- Our relationships with women are equally if not more important than our relationships with men. As women, we have the power to lift each other up through compassion and shared experience. Men are great, but their ways of thinking and operating don’t always give us everything we need. Female friends are much more likely to let us be vulnerable and open without trying to fix or adjust us. Men will come and go from our lives, but our female friends (if chosen wisely) will be there for us through all of them.
Looking good and staying healthy is directly related to the effort you put into it. Even though there’s no real “fountain of youth,” exercise and diet can have a restorative and youthful effect on one’s appearance. Self-care works on the physical level, as well as the psychological level. A sustained habit of exercise makes us feel stronger personally and eating well improves our self-esteem. When you care for anything, you value it more.
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5. Good relationships transcend age boundaries. We often think, when it comes to relationships, love and companionship are only for the young, but some of the best relationships happen later in life when we have a better sense of who we are and what we want/need out of our intimate and close relations. The older we become, the more we tend to understand, accept and appreciate others in our lives. Take the time to love others intensely and with passion, but never love anyone more than you love yourself. Loving yourself, although it might seem selfish at first, is the key to success in relationships. Never lose your autonomy even when you are part of a couple.
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Life over 50 isn’t the end. In fact, nowadays, it’s ripe with new beginnings. Today, women (and men) aren’t pigeon-holed by society anymore. They are free to make life-changing decisions, especially during mid-life. We can be strong, confident, self-actualized humans at any age!