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My 3 Most Important Practices as I Move Forward This Fall

By Leslie Moon September 20, 2023 Mindset

Fall for me is like New Year’s Eve for many others. My summers are often crazy (in a great way) and tend to be completely unscheduled. When September rolls around, I begin to sit down and think about how I’d like my year to look moving forward.

I consider my goals each fall as well as how I intend to achieve them.

And if I’m being honest, this fall I find myself struggling a bit.

I have always been a very scheduled person with substantial “to do” lists. But this year I don’t have job commitments. My commitments are to myself, my family, and the community of women in Life Balance After 50.

During this past year I started saying “no” to things that were not on my top priority list, and it is the first year I have found myself with nothing left but my main priorities.

Which is a fabulous feeling and one that I don’t quite know what to do with!

As I consider what my goals might be for this fall, there are three commitments that I am going to practice daily. I know that when I do this consistently, regardless of what is on my “to do” list each day, that I will have a fabulous day and week.

Most Importantly – I Will Live My Best Life, EVEN WHEN IT’S MESSY

And I know from experience that there are days when it will be EXTREMELY messy! Days that won’t go according to my plan – which, for this control freak, can be a huge issue!

Many of us suffer from the negative core belief that things must be done perfectly and if they can’t be done perfectly, they won’t happen. This belief can often prevent us from taking any action at all. It can prevent us from trying something new that we might absolutely love.

At this stage of the game, that is exactly what we should be striving to do – trying out things that we might love.

Perfection be damned!

There will be days when I don’t get done what’s on my “to do” list because something better came along! Or maybe something awful came along that required my attention. Regardless, I will strive to live my best life each and every day. Even when it’s messy.

I Will Continue My Practice of Being Present

This has been a practice that I started last summer after going through a very stressful spring. I realized that never in my life had I been fully present for any event or experience. I was always worried about something, planning something that had zero to do with my current situation, or imagining something that could go wrong. Even during the most joyful occasions.

I began working very hard each day to remind myself to be fully present in what I was doing. To revel in my grandchildren’s laughter. To truly LISTEN to what my husband was saying to me without thinking about what I was going to make for dinner or what I was going to say back to him.

This was difficult at first. I was reminding myself constantly. It is not second nature to me and may never be, but it’s much easier than it was at the outset. And something that I will continue to practice daily until my dying day.

It has allowed me to fully embrace the joyful moments in each day and realize that there are many. Additionally, it has allowed me to accept the painful moments. We have to be present in all of the emotions – not just the happy ones.

Self-Awareness Is Key

This goes along with the practice of being fully present.

We’ve spent our lives with a set of core beliefs that can often interfere with our ability to live our best life. Beliefs such as:

  • The world is not safe.
  • I am not good enough.
  • I have to do things perfectly.
  • I need to be in control all of the time.

And the list goes on.

We’ve lived with these beliefs for 50+ years, so the likelihood is that they aren’t going to magically disappear.

BUT… when we are in situations where we are aware that they are preventing us from doing something, or helping us to make excuses, the awareness can help us push past our anxiety and power through.

Being self-aware can help us to live our best lives. And I intend to practice this daily as I move forward this fall.

Let’s Have a Conversation:

What does fall represent for you? Is it a time when you set goals? Do you have perfectionist core beliefs that might be standing in the way of you living your best life?

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Fall is my favorite time. This year it was Canning as we had a bumper crop of tomatoes. But as I grow older I look the other way when I see dust bunnies….I’m in the midst of rearranging closets, a little bit each day I say, I would rather sit outside with my other half and enjoy being with him…so often we are too busy to smell the roses, it’s time now to relax and enjoy the roses, garden, good book and great conversations.

Sheila Gunther

This fall I dealt with trash in my yard with the help of my neighbors and my yard is all cleared out finally after 5 years of working


I love this Sheila! I feel like I’d keep walking outside to marvel at it. Congrats on getting this done!


Before I went on holiday 3 weeks ago I decided when I got back I would get myself out of the rut I have been inhabiting since the very final lockdown period we had. It was a lockdown too far for me, I didn’t cope well with it, then adjusting to getting back into normal everyday life was difficult.

I came back last weekend and after all the initial post holiday stuff like doing laundry and cleaning I have started getting organised for autumn and winter coming. Yesterday I signed up to a free online mindfulness course via a university college psychology department (I’ve already done 2 courses in Switzerland, but they cost me 800 francs each, so anything free is welcome).

I’ve also decided in the dark months I’m going to finish craft projects I’ve abandoned and am going to start blogging again (husband is a software engineer and has offered to develop a new website for me). As a reward and to keep me going I have booked tickets for 2 musicals at the end of January. I’m sorting out notes and text books as well, I plan to pick up German where I left it at the start of the pandemic because there were no classes to attend. I speak terrible German as I struggle with word order, but God loves a trier as they say.

Most of all I determined not to fall back into the trench I have just emerged from!


Linda, this all sounds AMAZING! I love, too, how you’re rewarded yourself. So important for us to do and we often don’t. I love all of these action steps.

Karen Y

Yes, I have struggled with perfectionism for ever. I am working on letting go. I am learning to see perfectionism not as a vutue but as a trait that holds me back and causes my self talk to be negative. Fall has always been calming and renewing for me. It brings the idea that coziness is coming. I enjoy changing to fall decor and wrapping up any needed chores to put things to bed for the winter. And I look forward to cocooning with good books, quilting and doing watercolor art.


Karen, I love your view of winter. I need to save this comment and revisit it from time to time. It is cozy! I tend to think of it as cold and blech – I need to turn that attitude around. Thank you for this!

Genevieve Rohan

Fall for me is the time to see the changes around me as well as within me. The colors, the smells, the pace of life slowing after Summer. It is my favorite time of the year. Even better than Spring.


Another great and positive view of fall. Your comment sounds like you are very present in the fall. Thank you for this!

The Author

Leslie is the founder of Life Balance After 50 where she uses her background in counseling and behavior analysis to help women navigate their goals and dreams after 50. She created a free mini workbook along with a guide and a full-length workbook for women who are looking to redefine and find joy and purpose in their second half of life. Contact Leslie at

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