How I Live a Life of Contentment After 50
I have learned we choose to be contented women over 50 or discontented. We have that choice. Choice is one of the positive spices of life. Contentment is many things: comfort, love, satisfaction, pleasure, fulfillment, tranquility, happiness, and gladness. If you ache to live a life of contentment but feel as though there is always something in your way, you’ll want to read How I Removed Roadblocks to Enjoy Success, and also What DNA Tells a Woman Over 50 (hint: positivity is in your genes but it is also a choice!).
“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need” —Cicero
How many of you are content with your life?
I asked myself this question last evening as I stood over the stove, mincing fresh garlic and adding it into the pasta sauce. As I began to stir the sauce, I glanced up at my Ultimate Concierge staring at me. He was sitting at the kitchen table and smiling. Soft music flowed through our home, which has become ‘the norm,’ our norm. “What are you thinking?”
He answered, “I am just thinking how content I am watching you make dinner.” I felt a double wave of physical and emotional contentment sweep over me because he was content. Already, I was in rhythm with everything in my kitchen and enjoying the experience.
A Number of Factors for Contentment
I have come to understand that happiness is influenced by a number of factors. Contentment is at the head of my list. It means you are satisfied. I also know that happiness is just a part of life.
It is now 5:29 a.m. the next morning. My laptop is open. The sun is rising in the east, and I am happy. I decide to focus on what defines contentment. Naturally, I think of myself and the people I know and conclude there is a difference between happiness and contentment. Happiness is a frequent state of mind when a person feels joyful over an incident. Contentment is a long-lasting state of mind when a person is satisfied with their accomplishment(s) and their life and not always wishing for more. As women over 50, this would be a good lesson for your grandchildren.
Thinking Back on Old Memories
I leaned back into my chair and thought further about the word and remembered a time in my life when my situation could have put me in the depths of despair. Darlings, I had every reason to be genuinely unhappy and could have been very discontent with my life. But … I wasn’t!
When I was a young married woman, I was faced with a very long-lasting and difficult time in my life. So, I decided, at a young age, that the way to combat the problem was to be grateful and content with what I had and not let the situation stop me from living a fruitful life of contentment. I made a conscious choice.
“It is not the unhappy situations that steal away contentment but rather the choice of how you meet your challenges. Remember, your attitude is your latitude.” — Honey Good
In a way, I was wise beyond my years. It was part wisdom, I suppose, and part of my inherited gene pool of positivity. I knew I would make lemonade out of lemons and not let anything stop me from being content.
I made a conscious choice to join a specific group of women who had the same calling I had and eventually I became the chairman of the group for four years. My effort gave me lasting contentment because I derived self-satisfaction, gladness, gratification, serenity and a feeling of pride and a spurt in intellectual and spiritual growth. And now, I feel the same happiness when I join in conversations in my private Facebook group, Celebrate Life.
Later, when my life normalized, I was the Queen of Gratitude and am to this day. It does not take much for me to be a content woman.
My Key to Contentment After 50: I Am Loved & I Love
Back to my story…
I never discussed the problem and focused on enjoying the group. And because I made a conscious choice to find contentment, I was happy.
Am I always happy? Of course not. Am I always content? No. But on a scale of 1-10 in this difficult period of life, I have to give myself an honest 7 (my lucky number!).
Why? Because I am loved, and I love. Because one of my favorite words is simplicity, and though I lead an extraordinary life, my mind thinks of simplicity. Little things make me happy and content.
I know many women over 50 are not happy with their life ‘situation’ and for good reason. There are family matters, financial situations, health worries, loneliness, adult children stressing you out big time and the feeling of invisibility after the age of 50 (and before).
It is not the unhappy situations that steal away contentment but rather the choice of how you meet your challenges. Remember, your attitude is your latitude.
Why not sit alone with your thoughts in your library, your garden, your kitchen or bedroom and reflect on how you are living your life. Remember, no one is going to create a utopia for you. It is up to you to create one for yourself. Everyone has the ability to harness personal contentment.
How to Choose Contentment
As Gandhi said, “Man’s happiness really lies in contentment. He who is discontented, however much he possesses, becomes a slave to his desires.”
So, think about your gifts, your family, your relationships, your friends and the roof over your head, and the food on your table and let yourself breathe the fresh air of contentment into your life.
I mentioned that at this time I am a 7 in the contentment department. I have problems, too. Sometimes it is hard for me to cope with everything. I tell myself, “I am being tested. I ask myself,” What do I do?
My answer is: I stay in the game no matter how tough my plight. I dare myself to dare. Like you fall, I fall, multiple times. I have self-doubts but where many women over 50 give up and choose an easy path because it is comfortable and safe, I am able to persevere. Thankfully, I have always been resilient. I learned the importance of having resiliency as a child. Fortunately for me.
It is never too late to gain an understanding of what it takes to be a contented woman. It is not the smartest woman who wins the game in the contentment arena, it is the most resilient woman. She will find a positive path to living a life filled with contentment.
My advice to find contentment:
1. Be around resilient women. Learn from them.
2. Read positive material.
3. Listen to podcasts and watch videos.
4. Keep a journal and record your authentic feelings.
5. Remember, you cannot materialize anything by wishing.
6. So, be precise with your desires.
7. Record your intentions because this will help you focus.
8. Have a vision. What areas of your life give you the feeling of contentment?
My Number One Tool
Life will reward you when you do your homework, not instantly, but definitely. I have tested the waters and learned.
Out of the list of 8, journaling has been my tool. It may not be yours because it takes months and years to lean into your answers.
When you journal, you become your own truth seeker. It is the most reliable form of learning to understand your needs on how to balance life and feel content. Your words are your intention.
Please consider combining journaling and listening to podcasts on the subject of contentment. You will gain instant gratification to start the process and long-lasting gratification through your own voice.
The end goal: None of us want a bucket filled with regret. We would all prefer our bucket to be filled with contentment.
I know a woman who wears a tattoo on the inside of her wrist. It says, ‘Simply Be.’ Without a doubt, this is a good place to start on your journey, to find what triggers contentment from within. Simply be, darlings. Simply be.
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