Finding Life’s Purpose
I don’t know about you, but entering into the empty nest – “last chapter of life” – phase has had me feeling the need to get in alignment with my highest self and finding my unique – or true – purpose. It has also had me exploring the concept of having soul contracts.
For reference – a soul contract is the concept that our souls make an agreement with our higher self or someone else before we are born and then create an outline for what we will learn (and achieve?) during our lifetime. This ultimately leads to us realizing and – hopefully – achieving our soul’s divine mission.
Now, the one thing that makes me struggle a bit with this concept is that I was raised Catholic – and the Catholic religion does not necessarily believe in reincarnation. That’s not to say that having a soul contract means that we were definitely reincarnated. Because couldn’t it also be true that your soul was alive before you entered the womb and this world? Surely Catholic religion would support that belief – but either way – and whatever the real answer, which none of us will ever truly know until we die … I find the concept of having a soul contract – and a divine purpose – in this lifetime to be quite intriguing.
I have always felt that my soul purpose was to come into this world to be a Mother. I once had a psychic reading that reinforced that believe by telling me that in a previous life I was a concert pianist who traveled the world. While I was very accomplished in that field, I was always burdened by the fact that I had a childless life. Coming into this life, my soul purpose (or one of them anyway … because you can often have many) was to have children and to be the best possible Mother.
For that past 26+ years, that has been my focus. In addition building businesses, and enjoying a solid community of friends and family – having children has been my sole – or soul – focus. Most people who know me, particularly my children, can attest to the fact that I take motherhood and my role as a mother VERY seriously.
And I suppose that’s another blog/podcast for the future, because this blog is about realizing and/or fulfilling your life’s purpose once your children leave the nest. Because that is when you are slapped in the face with the overwhelming sense of being alone – and if alone sounds too dramatic – being an individual once again. It’s a time when you have to look back at yourself and realize that you are the only one who you really need to take care of anymore. And how are you going do that to ensure that your “golden years” are healthy, vibrant and fulfilling?
I have been pondering that question a lot lately.
Asking All the Right Questions
If you are asking yourself what am I doing here? What am I doing with my life? What gives me joy? What is the point of anything – then, despite the obvious confusion and anxiety – I believe that you’re on the right page,
It’s nice to think that there is plenty of time – but that’s never guaranteed. So why wait to live your best life? Why delay that possibility? When you think of things that way, you realize, there’s really no time to screw around.
So, if you find yourself stuck in the dreaded and sometimes agonizing process of transitioning from full time Mom to “part time or retired” Mom … it’s okay to feel a little lost or stuck. Because no-one ever prepares you for that transition and too few women are ever actually ready for it. And that’s a problem that really needs to be addressed for upcoming generations of women.
It doesn’t matter if you’re happily married, going through a divorce, or fully on your own … transitioning from full time Mom status into that empty nest stage can be depressing, intimidating, confusing and a little terrifying. But it doesn’t have to be.
Live and Learn – In Full Force
What should actually be the most beautiful and fulfilling time of our lives; overflowing with feelings of success, achievement, and celebrating major milestones is all too often spent lonely, afraid, confused and depressed, This is a time in our lives when we should be taking all of our lessons learned, wisdom and knowledge gained and using that gift to live our lives In Full Force.
What we really should be doing is leaning – hard – into this next chapter of our lives and truly celebrating what makes us unique. We should recognize that this is a time to stop putting everyone else’s needs, wants and desires before our own. We already did that … this is our time.
But how do you get to that point where you feel comfortable doing so? You can start by asking yourself – what is going to help me lead a more fulfilling life? Is it a community, connection, money, success, travel, health? What is most important to you? What matters most? Because once you know what is going to make you lead the most fulfilling life, then you can start working towards that – start doing just that. This is when you will start feeling better because you are no longer wasting valuable time … you are living YOUR life In Full Force.
Surely this is something we should have started thinking about when our kids were in middle school and just starting to need us a little less. Then we would have had 8 or so years working toward fulfilling our own dreams. But just because we are just now realizing this and starting to work towards that goal, does not mean it cannot be done.
While our younger generation of women definitely need to learn – and know – that it is not wise to wait 18 years after having your children to start thinking about themselves. It is a process that they should be done in alignment with raising a family – raise your family and raise yourself. Because – unfortunately – no one else is going to do that for you. That said, there is no time for regrets or second guessing the way you lived your life. Now is the time to finally connect with who you are and what your life purpose is.
Hope Springs Eternal
Did you know that negative attitudes about aging can reduce life expectancy by 7.5 years. A hopeful attitude about aging, including staying engaged and curious has been associated with a lower risk of heart disease and stronger brain function.
So living a healthy and vibrant last quarter of your life will not only help you live happier, it will help you live longer. Now is the time to cherish the perspective that comes from being older – we sometimes overlook the richness that comes from a life well lived.
An important part of living a rich and rewarding life is having a sense of community. It’s a weird transition going from full time Mom, surrounded by your children, their friends and their friends families, all the activities and things to do, to suddenly no longer having that. This quick transition can lead to a sense of loneliness. But it does not have to. There is a way to build a community for yourself in your later years.
Since the covid pandemic, the loneliness epidemic have been deemed a public health crisis, putting the spotlight on the importance of prioritizing connection and community, which can ultimately reduce the risk of developing dementia, and other chronic conditions that lead to an earlier death.
Building Community to Live Your Best Life
So my question to you is, do you lack community? Would you like to have a stronger sense of community in your life? If so, what does that community look like to you? How do you want to spend your new found time?
I created In Full Force to serve that purpose. Because I think this may be my life’s purpose – beyond being “Super Mom” – to help women create and engage in a community that brings joy, love and purpose to their lives.
How do you accomplish that? I have been asking my self that a lot lately. And in the absence of any real answers to that question … I am simply starting. I am putting it out there that In Full Force exists for that purpose, to build community for women in the later stages of life who do not want to crawl up into a ball and die … who want to live an amazing life filled with laughter, adventure, joy and love.
So if this sounds like something you might be interested in exploring, please reach out. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, comment on my social media platforms @liveinfullforce, attend one of our upcoming events. Because I can’t do this without you.
Now is the time to know in your heart that the best years of your life are actually ahead of you.
To coin one of my favorite sayings … Carpe Diem, seize the day. Because no one is going to do that for you.