Attention in Mid-Life

By mid-life the rules have changed. No longer are our days about striving, focusing on achieving a goal, or keeping someone comfortable. Now our attention goes to realms inside we haven’t visited. We explore our own undeveloped capacities. Never played duplicate bridge? Let’s do it now. Never danced onstage? Now is the time. We pick up the paint brush or the camera or the backpack or the pen and we allow our creativity to guide us.

“Allow” and “creativity” are mid-life words. They connote our respect for our partnership with Life and our trust that what we don’t understand knows what’s best for us. We move enthusiastically into spaces we’ve never travelled.

We explore the depths behind our feelings. Maybe we’ve always been caught by our neediness. Now we don’t let our fear stop us. Trying to satisfy those needs has never worked anyway—not with love or food or drink or money or prestige. Those same old feelings of “I want,” “I need,” “ I long for” still exist but now we move into our Observer and we say, “OK, tell me about it.” And we sit still and pay complete attention to those feelings and we don’t do anything. That’s right. We don’t solve our “problems” for we see that our so-called “problem” is a beautiful, valuable part of ourself. We want to know that part of ourself and help it develop and mature and blossom. There is always a gift hidden by the pain and now we demand the gift!

Creativity doesn’t come from our head or our training or anything external. Creativity is the experience of allowing Life to guide us and following with humility and attention and commitment. And always saying “Yes.” We are all artists with our consciousness and in mid-life our consciousness expands. We release limitations and identify with our spirit, not our intellect. We open to anything. Finally, we’re ready. We know that who we are is valuable and that we must offer our gifts to the world. So we do, because we must.


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