Posted by: Admin | January 7, 2011

Everybody’s doing it…

…reassessing their lives at 50, that is!

Helen Kirwan-Taylor writing in the Evening Standard describes her countdown to 50 and the reasons behind it thus:

Helen Kirwan-Taylor image from The Evening Standard, © Matt Writtle

“What you discover at 49 is that no one really cares what you get up to any more. It’s your choice how you spend your time. Careers by now are old hum (you’ve made it or you haven’t) and we’ve moved on to who we are rather than who we want to be. You realise everyone is just pretending to be grown up.”

It’s not physical ageing we should fear, she argues, but need to “keep an open mind and an open heart.”

Using the template of Jane Austen’s Emma, Helen has devised herself a twelve month plan in which she aims to take up something new every month. So from revisiting her childhood love of the piano to learning how to garden, through travel and learning to meditate, she has set herself the goal of becoming more accomplished whilst introducing more fun and joy into her life.

“Young is being open to new things. It’s also about having pastimes that fill you with enthusiasm that can continue into your nineties. I want to be able to see any point of view, which is more than I can say for some of my peers who have never been to Shoreditch and haven’t made a new friend since they left university. They reinforce each other’s values by never confronting anyone else’s. I don’t want to be 21, I just want to experience the addictive nature of learning for no reason whatsoever. What is young if not being random, purposeless and impractical?”

Quite. Some of Ms Kirwan-Taylor’s plans involve the kind of considerable cost in both money and time that is not available to everyone. But the principle is sound – a year of purposeful fun-seeking is within anyone’s grasp. What better way to celebrate life at 50?

Click on the link above to read the full article.

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