Five years ago, my husband and I relocated from our home in Maryland to California. Our plan was to live near our children and family who had relocated to the area. We downsized and got rid of most of our furniture and belongings. We let go of things that had accumulated over the years.

Saying goodbye to our friends and all that was familiar to us, we sold our home and moved. I thought everything would be amazing. It was going to be a new adventure. Then reality set in, as it always does.

The move took much more out of me than I ever expected. Nothing, and I mean nothing, went according to plan. Within months I was discouraged and exhausted. Within in a year I was completely disheartened.

We all go through setbacks and disappointments. Life changes affect us in ways we never would have wanted or expected. However, this experience taught me that we make things more difficult when we have preconceived notions. Having fixed ideas of how things should be can often end in disappointment.

Many women in the Sixty and Me community are going through a major life transition. You may be trying to recreate and reinvent your life. If so, here are some hard learned lessons that I would like to share with you.

Accept Wholeheartedly What is Happening, Even if You Don’t Like It

Step into new experiences without judgment and resistance. Accept that life is unpredictable and that we don’t have control over everything that happens. The moment I let it go of my expectations, I felt a relief. I felt less burdened and more open to what was there. Only then was I able to notice people, events and opportunities that were showing up in my life.

Don’t Hang On to What Isn’t Working

Learn to let go of old ideas, beliefs and ways of doing things. If it isn’t working, try a different approach. We often hang on to what is familiar because it makes us feel comfortable. Sometimes, we don’t know what else to do. When life is not going as we want, we often persist and keep try harder to do the same things in the same way. When we stay open and try something else, we end up in a different place. A better place.

Change Exact Expectations

You may have the intention to create something new in your life. For example, the goal might be to be surrounded by a community of love and support. However, you can’t decide how that will come to you. Focus on the end results but in a general way. Leave room for possibilities, be ready to accept the unknown. Be open to what life is offering and to what is unfolding. I think that you will find yourself in a better more fulfilling place.

Get Very Clear About What is Important

Not everything that we focus on is as important as we think it is. Remove what’s not essential. Stop doing those things that no longer bring you happiness or that you want to be a part of your life. By doing this, you create a vacuum than can pull what is meaningful into your life. Live and create your life with intention.

Appreciate What You Have in Your Life That Is Working

Be thankful for your loving relationships, job, home or whatever is working in your life. When you appreciate the love you have in your life, you will felt better in the present moment. The future will seem more optimistic. You will be able to create something new with confidence.

As long as you are living, something wonderful could happen at any moment. Life changes may produce highs and lows that you never anticipated. But what lies ahead will be a life filled with joy, new adventures and new ways of thinking.

I didn’t get what I thought I would, but what I got was a life that is gratifying and expansive.

Would you say that your life has turned out as you expected? How have you dealt with life changes that taught you important lessons about yourself. Are you open to change and the unexpected in your life?

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