The first ten things on my 40 for 40 list were actions I took — places I went, things I purchased, etc. And there will be more of those on the list later this year. But there have also been many internal changes occurring during this hallmark year. Some of them are temporary, like the nagging sensation that I have limited time left in this lifetime to experience everything that I desire. But others have been more positive and, hopefully, sustainable.
One of these is self-acceptance. This has always been a struggle for me, and as such it is an aspect of myself in which I have invested a lot of reflection and intention. I am starting to feel an internal shift occurring. Perhaps it is related to the passage of time, an evolution of who I am with a cumulative impact. It could also be that reaching this milestone in my life has triggered something that would otherwise not naturally occur.
I’m starting to feel OK with who I am; I no longer feel that I am in desperate need of being fixed. I have realized that to be happy, I have to accept — and appreciate — myself and my circumstances as they are right now. I have not become complacent, and I have not given up on pursing all of my dreams. Rather, I have minimized obsessing over the consequences that may or may not occur as a result of my being in the world and the achievements that I may or may not accomplish. I have started to realize that every thing I feel, think, and do matters and has an impact whether it is realized now or at some time in the future. I have cultivated patience and compassion for myself which expand outward as I interact with others. I see other, younger, people struggling to come to terms with who they are and I understand because I have been there. But I am no longer there myself.