S2Episode38 Midlife Magic + Third Acts

April 6, 2024

Good morning from New York City. I’m sitting here noodling this morning a recurring theme that’s coming up. I’ve talked about how I’m feeling restless and I had originally said that I’m bored. The reframe for myself is I am feeling restless or desiring more or wanting a third act. You can say it in many different ways. What I’m noticing in my conversations is – surprise, surprise –  I’m not alone.

What I find interesting is it doesn’t matter what theme I’m talking about, whether it’s loneliness, or needing to be more patient and tolerant or forgiving, or being indecisive and waffling – whatever it is – this is simply what life is all about and these moments or themes or conundrums come and go in all of our lives. Now, why am I talking about that? Yes, of course, I’m stating the obvious, but why am I stating this? It’s because I remember at one point, I was very much thinking about and reflecting upon grief. I was reading about it. I was seeking out wisdom. I felt like I had a lot to say, and the message going through my head was, oh my gosh Constance. you don’t want to go down that route that’s like the last thing people want to hear about. Then lo and behold, Anderson Cooper comes out with his amazingly beautiful podcast, All There Is, and takes the world by storm. He had the cojones to address it, to be vulnerable about it. Listening to him speak and listening to all these amazing stories, it’s like a fast and furious dose of empathy and the express elevator to your heart space.I truly experienced that podcast as a stunning work of art and an important and beautiful window into humanity.

Anyway, all of this to say that the theme that’s coming into my life that I’m trying to avoid at all costs is related to aging and midlife and all that that encompasses. And the negative Nelly bird that sits on my shoulder sometimes, screeching self doubt tells me, nah, don’t go down that route. And I know it’s important. And that feeling that it’s important is the same thing I felt when I was so much thinking and writing about grief, The negative voice is also saying things to me like you want to appeal to a broader audience who wants to hear about getting old, there are a lot of great people out there talking about it, and if people are interested in that, they’ll go find it on their own.

But this time I’m trying to think about it a little bit differently. I feel more inclined to share my process because the truth of the matter is I am a 62-year-old woman (I’m about to turn 63 on May 21st), and I feel strong and vibrant and better in my skin than ever before. Life isn’t over when you’re 60, and it’s not over when you’re 70, and it’s not over when you’re 80. We get to choose how we conduct our lives. We get to choose how we show up. We get to choose the narrative that runs through our head. Just yesterday in fact, I was having lunch with my two buddies, Sarah and her sister Alex, and Alex stated at the table, I’m never going to retire. They were telling me the story about their father who is vibrant and vital and working and he’s 90.

This isn’t all about working. but that is on my mind right now. If you haven’t heard previous podcasts, I am looking for my third act. I have shied away from this many times in the past a little bit because I’ve had doubts about my ability and my desire to reinvent myself in some way. And of course, let’s face it. It feels vulnerable.  But I want to step up to the plate and own it and be honest and share my journey with you. Now, of course, not every podcast will be about this, but I do want to share what I’m doing and how it makes me feel, and what kind of response I’m getting. Yesterday at my lunch with Sarah and Alex, I was lucky enough to receive a reframe of my language and how to handle myself in an important meeting I’m going to be having. I walked away feeling really encouraged. And while it may take time to find my way I’m in it to win it.

The last thing I want to say here is you may have heard me speak in the past about M. E. A., the Modern Elder Academy. That’s the beautiful place I went on a retreat in Baja, California (they just opened a new campus in Santa Fe). Anyway, I called my friend Kathe yesterday and I said what is the other word that we use for modern elder. Because the use of the word elder is something that I don’t love. Another word Chip Conley, one of the founders of MEA, talks about is the midlife chrysalis, Chrysalis is really beautiful because the chrysalis is of course about transformation.  But the dear Constance language around this period of life, which is actually quite an extended period in time, well, I’m going to call it midlife magic, baby. There you have it. I am experiencing midlife magic. Oh, I just love that.

I’m going to end here. That’s all for now. I wish you all a wonderful, wonderful weekend until next time from my heart to yours.

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dear Listeners,

Friends say I live my life out loud. That’s because I’m a curious, adventurous person and, as an appreciator, I simply love to share what lights me up. Consider this is your invitation into my fun, multi-faceted world.

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“Speaking with Constance helped me to see myself  – and my experience –with fresh perspective.  I got great clarity and completely shifted gears. She totally got it. The experience fully re-energized me.”

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