Monday, 10 October 2016

Midlife Monday ~ The Power of Positivity

Midlife Monday ~ there is no question that there is power in being positive


AFFIRMATIVE THINKING

I've always been a realist - all those touchy-feely New Age affirmations have never really been my "thing" ......until recently. My husband is a family counselor and he is a big advocate of the power of positive thinking. The more we wire our brain with positive thoughts, the more we change our view of the world. It's not magic, or a miracle, it's a gradual readjustment to the way we approach  life. And as I've given time and attention to thinking about all the good in my life and being grateful, I can see what a change it has made. 

My 50's have seen the end of several preconceived ideas and the beginning of a few new ones:


Love is a combination of respect, friendship and understandingMARRIAGE:


No matter what you said in your vows 30+ years ago, marriage still takes work and there is a need to put in the time and desire to keep the connection alive. You can't expect to cruise through all the changes of an empty nest and not have to make some conscious decisions to re-invest in the relationship that you promised to keep through thick and thin.

My husband always said "I made a vow" as his idea of affirming that he wouldn't leave. That's all well and good until depression messes with his thinking and a life of solitude starts to look attractive! Making a vow is really important, keeping the vow is even more important, but the most valuable gift you can give is to keep the love alive and nurture the relationship that is the most significant long term one we will experience.




The greatest gifts you can give your children is responsibility and independenceKIDS:


They grow up, they move out, they have their own lives, and they don't need us anywhere near as much as we thought they would. Both of ours made lives for themselves in the city - first as uni students, then as they settled into careers and marriages that were based in the "big smoke" rather than in their home town.

I can lament the fact that they've left, or I can look at how well they're doing and be proud of the contribution our parenting has made in their lives. Our kids are independent, financially secure and emotionally stable - not much more that you could ask for as a parent (although a visit home now and then would be a bonus!)


we must cultivate our own gardenMIDLIFE:


So many women look at midlife as the beginning of the end. I was heading in that direction until I opened my eyes and looked at all the positives that have come my way in the last few years. I have a life that is flexible and not dependent on running around after others, a job that I'm enjoying, I have a blog that is connecting me to all sorts of amazing women who have become my friends and encouragers. This list could go on for quite a while but I'll stop here for now.

I am discovering who I truly am as a person - not who I think I should be to keep other people happy, but who I am under all the expectations (most of which I had heaped on myself). I am innately happy and upbeat these days, I feel that if my life was a garden, it would be blooming. I don't need anyone to come and plant flowers for me, I'm too busy planting my own and it feels like my garden is alive and thriving. No bitterness or dryness is going to get in there and kill stuff off - because I'm going to keep being positive - I think that's what waters the soil.



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Midlife Monday - www.crestingthehill.com.au

34 comments:

  1. Back in the olden days of undergrad I remember reading a poem which was very very very very sappy but one of the lines said we need to plant our own gardens and decorate our own souls.
    Even though I was as young as 18 or 19 that resonated with me and I've carried it with me ever since.

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    1. It is a little cheesy but it holds such a deep truth - basically we are responsible for our own happiness and contentment. It's a lesson we all need to hold on to isn't it Carla?

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  2. I like the idea of life as a garden and you are planting and nourishing it yourself. Wishing you forever fertile soil!

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    1. Thanks Haralee - sometimes the fertilizer isn't what I asked for - but it all helps in building life and resilience!

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  3. Love your take on all these parts of life. I am busy cultivating my own garden every day, too! At first it was scary, but now it is exciting and enriching. My children are independent and have become dear friends. I respect the people that they have grown to become. It feels good! My husband and I are approaching 40 years of marriage - we feel connected and loved. Each day is a new day to grab the joy in life!

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    1. Exactly Ellen - there is so much to be grateful for at this time of life. So many women are struggling with midlife but I think it's our mindset and how we choose to approach it. Life is very good indeed!

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  4. Planting your own garden - That's the way to true happiness. Weeds will grow but you can always get rid of them and plant whatever the heck you want. It's your life.

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    1. Some of those weeds are actually quite lovely in their own way - or you can hoe them under and use them to fertilize the plants you want to keep :)

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  5. Shiz happens and that's life. I have never been one to wallow--there's a reason they called me "sunshine" in college!
    Carol
    www.carolcassara.com

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    1. And Shiz is great fertilizer for the soil of life Carol :)

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  6. I'm all for positive thinking. Approaching life with a positive attitude doesn't mean nothing bad will ever happen. But I can guarantee that approaching life with negative thinking, colors everything for the worse. And even at the times where life doesn't go as expected, there may be something good that comes out of it, even if it's a lesson!

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    1. I agree Cathy - life is definitely affected by how you approach it. We are so blessed to live in this time and place - so we need to be grateful for it and do our bit to shine the light.

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  7. Oh, yes. Attitude makes all the difference in ALL areas of life. Thank you for the reminder. And this... well, so true: "Making a vow is really important, keeping the vow is even more important...." Yes, yes, yes!

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    1. Thanks Lisa - I've found that life happens regardless, it's how you handle it and how you choose to view your circumstances that makes all the difference between self pity or contentment with your lot.

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  8. I love your perpetual positivity. I just celebrated my 39th birthday so midlife is my new reality. I am NOT dreading it, however. Inspiration women like you have helped me to see the best is yet to come!

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    1. Thanks Rica - and it's true, the best is still in the future. It doesn't mean that what has gone before isn't wonderful, just that life keeps deepening and developing - how great is that?!

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  9. Love the idea of cultivating my own garden Leanne - although I don't have a green thumb! Positivity is what it is all about - sometimes it is hard but then we come back on focus and life is so much better.

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    1. My life garden is doing a lot better than my backyard garden Sue - I think a green thumb was not on the agenda when I was being made - but that doesn't stop me working on my soul's garden instead :)

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  10. I totally believe in the power of positive thinking. I just don't always do it :)! I can definitely talk myself into a good mood or a bad one.

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    1. It has a much bigger impact on our way of looking at the world than we give it credit for doesn't it Lana? :)

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  11. Leanne, I'm a big believer in positive thinking. I've never known a successful person who was a pessimist. They all look beyond the problem with imagination and vision. Thanks for this reminder.

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    1. That's so true Laurie - I hadn't thought about it that way, but you're right about successful people and their way of looking at their problems. We all have issues but how we see them makes a huge difference.

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  12. I particularly appreciate the idea that positivity is a practice. You don't just "take a vow" to be positive (like marriage) you need to work on it and train and re-train your pathways. I loved reading this.

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    1. Thanks Anna - it is certainly a journey and something you get better at if you put it into practice. I'm getting better as I go along.

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  13. I definitely agree with your husband about positive thinking, even though I still struggle with it from time to time! Great post and I love your mindset. :) <3 -Erin at www.stayathomeyogi.com

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    1. Hi Erin - yes it's something we all fall down with at times - none of us are ragingly proactive every day, but if we manage to be positive as often as possible, it makes life a lot better :)

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  14. It sounds like you are in a wonderful place. Midlife has become a new way for us as women to rediscover how we can live our lives, and by changing the focus to see things in a positive light rather than negative. It does make all the difference in the world!

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    1. It is certainly a much better stage of life than I ever imagined Rosie - and a lot of that is because I've chosen my attitude and I refuse to sink into a funk - life's getting shorter - we've got to party while we can!

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  15. Your post made me think of Dave Mallet's song lyrics, a native of Maine. Here is a snippet: "Inch by inch and row by row, gonna make this garden grow. All it takes is a rake and a hoe and a piece of fertile ground. Inch by inch and row by row, someone bless these seeds I sow. And someone warm them from below, till the rain comes tumblin' down." When you plant seeds of positivity you are much better prepared for the inevitable rain. Thanks for planting those seeds, Leanne.

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    1. My pleasure Molly and I loved that song - especially the part about someone warming them down below - we really need to warm each other's lives don't we? And blogging plays a big part in that.

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  16. Love this attitude! I tend to be a realist too, but I do believe that a positive attitude can take people a long way, not always the best at practising it though!

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    1. I think "realist" sums me up to a tee. But trying to incorporate some positivity into that makes me a much happier person now days.

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  17. Positive thinking is so important unfortunately sometimes I forget about it
    #LifeLovingLinkie

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  18. It really grates on me when people moan about their lives. Either change it or shut up. The negative moaning isn't helping and you won't feel better for it. You are truly a breath of fresh air Leanne.

    Sally @ Life Loving

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