The following article was published on the Huffington Post contributor platform on August 1st 2017. You can read it directly on the Huff Post site here . Feel free to comment & share.
Another amazing year to celebrate life! Last week I inched one year closer to another decade milestone. Sometimes life can get really, really rough and I would admit that despite outward appearances, my year has been filled with many ups and downs, but I am still grateful for the many blessings.
Most of all, I am thankful for the amazing network of people I have in my life and the ones I somehow continue to attract almost on a weekly basis. These people really make life richer, more beautiful and loads of fun with each new day, as we all support each other unconditionally in good times and bad, despite the hurdles we all experience.
I have absolutely no qualms about disclosing my age in public despite what many other women (including those in my family) have told me in the past. I will be sharing why I feel the way I do in the hope of inspiring others to release those hangups.
And also perhaps achieve a huge pipe dream of breaking down those societal hurdles and misconceptions we have imposed on each other, since inevitably we will all get there one day!
Almost a decade ago, I was having a meltdown about turning 30. After a crazy Friday night of celebrating with my work colleagues and a more introspective Saturday night ringing in my 30th year with my friend Patrice, I came home and wrote an article which to my surprise birthed and rejuvenated my writing career.
When I wrote my thoughts about turning that corner, I thought it was for my eyes only, but those closest to me at the time told me it was newsworthy and I should try to get it published.
One newspaper editor didn’t think so though! However, one email and phone call later, another editor published it in her Sunday magazine without a single edit!
As I raced to the closest store that Sunday morning I tore open the paper to find a huge life-sized photo of myself along with the article! This continued to happen as I continued to contribute. Wow…to say I was thrilled was an understatement.
It was indeed an honor that this very prominent magazine published my first article that I had written after many disappointments in the early years that almost caused me to kill my dream of making a difference with my writing.
Back then my mom on the other hand did not like one bit that I disclosed my age and so much of myself for the nation to see, but the response was phenomenal! Colleagues past and present, managers, friends, even my post grad lecturer and loans officer at the bank lit up to share how they could relate to what they read in the Sunday paper.
Later I saw these articles were even shared internationally.
For once I was left without words.
Today my mother is one of my biggest supporters and often compliments me for my courage and undying faith.
My point throughout all of this however is that age, is just a number and state of mind. Just like poverty and race and anything that we allow to divide us. You can create the destiny you desire by your thoughts and your mere aura.
Sometimes when we haven’t dealt with our past pain and baggage, we subject ourselves to unnecessary tension and strife that pushes others away, attracts more pain and harm to ourselves, or causes opportunities and even friendship and love to slip through our fingers.
People are attracted to your energy and pure heart. I guess that’s the stuff that solidifies lifelong friendships and marriages. Honestly, I don’t feel a day over 25 and I actually still fool some people! Professionally, it should not hinder you either, once you stay consistent, groom your talent and exude your radiance and passion for life.
People hire you for what you can bring to the table and the unique spin you can put on it. People are attracted to humility and genuineness (Oddly enough, I hate to use that buzz word ‘authenticity’!).
It is also important to take good care of your mind, body and soul so as to look and feel great on the inside and outside.
Some folks may pass through your personal life and opportunities may pass you by professionally, but once you condition your thoughts to positive thinking, bet your bottom dollar, you will connect with the right ones or reconnect at the right times, regardless of any societal or physical barriers or foibles you may possess.
Opportunity, just like love comes to those whose character and spirit outshines any of those perceived imperfections, labels or challenges.
People and events enter/occur in your life for a reason. Sometimes we are not open to receive the lessons they may bring, because of pride or our myopic vision, because we are hell bent on a particular ‘fantasy’ for the outcome of our life – whether personally or professionally.
Maybe those people or events are meant to lead us to something else or prepare us for other greater things to come. Everything that happens to us – no matter how harsh it is, has a purpose.
But if we remain closed and focus on the pain too long, we will not learn the lessons so as to be able to move on to the next level of our journey.
Some of us stay stuck in a phase/job/relationship/place – longer than necessary because we fail to accept the truth, or we may lack the courage/confidence to go after what is rightfully ours in life. Maybe because of ego, fear of the unknown, lack of self-love or faith in our greater destiny.
Each of us will get what we are deserving of in due time. We must continue to stay open to the lessons and signs that are all around us; be consistent with our growth and conscious of our human frailties, in order to evolve into who we were destined to be and find our true joy, peace, fulfillment and zenith.
I have one more year to go before I turn another corner and decade milestone…I have lots and lots more work to do on ME and my micro-business in order to get where I need to go, but I do reckon this time I would not have another ‘meltdown’ but rather embrace this new and wonderful journey of celebrating my life, my passion, my unique purpose in this world and my new youth!
Endless Love & Cheers to Life!
Carolyn K. Correia is the author of Thinking out Loud, How To Find Yourself and Claim What’s Yours and she missed the boat on love. She is also a communications consultant, freelance writer, blogger and speaker. Learn more here www.carolyncorreia.com or connect on Facebook – CarolynCorreiaAuthor.