Should I have done more?

Meg feels as if she should have done more with her life and wonders what she can do to stop feeling lost. YourLifeChoices’ relationship expert Jo Lamble offers some tips to give Meg a boost.

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Q. Meg
I’m turning 65 and my kids have left home. My husband and I are separated but we still have a good relationship. The thing is, I feel like I should have achieved more in my life. I feel lost. Do you have any suggestions to help me stop this slide?

A. It’s so common to question what we have achieved in life, especially at certain ages like 50, 55, 60 and 65. And when we do ask ourselves this question, we often feel some self-doubt. It can be dangerous to compare our own achievements to those of others. It’s also unwise to compare our current situation to our expectations of what could or should have been. In other words, the first step to stopping this slide is to stop assessing your achievements. Rather, it’s time to look forward.

What have you always wanted to do but have never had the time to do? Learning a language? Travelling somewhere? Skydiving? Getting in touch with an old friend you’ve lost contact with? Instead of thinking of things you should have done, consider things you want to do. At 65, you’ve earned the right to do what you want.

It’s also important to practise feeling grateful. Researchers have found that if we go to bed thinking of three things that we are grateful for, we will feel happier. You might not want to do this every night, but when you’re feeling lost, it’s a good idea to focus on the things you have got in your life – your health, your kids, your friends, etc.

Finally, try to see yourself as others see you. How would your children and your close friends describe you? The people who love us don’t care about our achievements. They see our wonderful qualities. Do they see you as kind and loving or interesting and fun? If you’re not sure how they’d describe you, ask them. It’s always nice to hear why our nearest and dearest love us. Hopefully, it will give you a bit of a boost.

If you have a question for Jo Lamble, please send it to [email protected] 

Related articles:
When is it okay to complain?
How to forgive and forget
How to calm him down

Written by Jo Lamble

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