51

Today is my birthday.

I’m 51. 51 is the new 31. Look who else is 51: Will Smith, Hugh Jackman, Julia Roberts, Jimmy Kimmel, David Guetta, Kylie Minogue, and Vanilla Ice, people! I’m in good company. Jennifer Aniston is almost there and so is J. Lo.

I’ve decided to be proud of my age. It is what it is. How are we to be a society that embraces the elderly if we have shame just for living a long time? I’ve made it. I’ve had a couple close calls: a scooter accident in San Francisco….a blood clot post-labor 17 years ago…breast cancer…yet here I am. I’ve lost some loved ones this year (and in past years) and you know what? Life goes by fast. Live in a way so you won’t regret anything.

And I’m fit. I’m the strongest I’ve ever been mentally and physically. In my twenties, I thought it was most important to be thin. Now I see it’s most important to be strong.

I’m glad I’ve learned the lessons I’ve learned: Be present. Be open. Allow your children to be who they are. Love your job. Live well each day. Don’t take yourself – or anything  -seriously.

 

 

 

 

The Hexagon

daniel-von-appen-SUPJMZnXX1w-unsplash
Von Appen

I’m taking a podcast class. Seth Godin’s first lesson: start small. Your sister is your first guest…and then a neighbor…maybe a friend of a friend. But not until your sixth guest do you invite someone who has something “better to do.”

You’ll get more “yeses” once you’ve built your hexagon.

You need to develop your skills.

I love Seth’s closing: “Go make a ruckus.” I am thinking of my own…

 

Cellist Pablo Casals* on Work

img-4996.jpg

“To “retire” means to me to begin to die. The man who works and is never bored is never old. Work and interest in worthwhile things are the best remedy for age.”

“…Casals argues, we renew ourselves through purposeful work. (He) lived and worked for another four years, dying eight weeks before his ninety-seventh birthday.”

From Brainpickings.com

Hello, and what do you do?

rawpixel-589084-unsplash
Rawpixel

“When you completely identify with your role (mother…doctor…), then something vital is missing. If you play a role at work, you always have a secondary motive because the ego is at work. You’re not totally focused on the task at hand because there is some self-interest there. You want to protect yourself. You want to get credit for yourself…or use the people around you.”

Eckhart Tolle

 

Skipping

IMG-3465

“If you had everything in the material world (ambition, power, money), would that bring you happiness? 

Go back in time when you got something you really wanted. Were you happy? How long did it last?

You can be happy without anything achieved through ambition. So why not skip that step and just be joyous?”

-Byron Katie

 

 

 

Motivation

 

I am sitting at the open window (at four a.m.) and breathing the lovely air of a spring morning… Life is still good, [and] it is worth living on a May morning… I assert that life is beautiful in spite of everything! This “everything” includes the following items: 1. Illness; I am getting much too stout, and my nerves are all to pieces. 2. The Conservatoire oppresses me to extinction; I am more and more convinced that I am absolutely unfitted to teach the theory of music. 3. My pecuniary situation is very bad. 4. I am very doubtful if Undine will be performed. I have heard that they are likely to throw me over.”

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky 

 

“You absolutely have to believe in yourself. Man, you’ll get rejected hundreds of times. You have to believe in yourself if you’re going to succeed.”

Jon Bon Jovi

 

Confidence – noun, a feeling of self-assurance arising from one’s appreciation of one’s own abilities or qualities. 

Tchaikovsky was plagued by depression and also a hypochondriac. Somehow, he persevered and produced prolifically.  Bon Jovi and Tchaikovsky both possessed the drive to create music. This high level of motivation enabled them to overcome obstacles such as rejection and mental illness.

 

 

*photos from Unsplash.com