Today, I turn 40. 40! I just wrote that. Wow.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been reflecting… as those of us hitting “middle age” are likely to do. And I realized that although I’ve lived a very full life, my 30s hit me like a sledge hammer. My 30s relentlessly taught me lesson after lesson from what it was like to live like an illegal immigrant in a foreign country to what it actually feels like to “hit the wall,” literally. I learned and felt deeply and intimately what it feels like to almost die, memory loss, illness, disability and pain. To know the stress and strife of a lawsuit. To have your life put on trial. I suffered the pain of losing my career as a chef and found a new, deeper way to serve. And I learned what it is like to lose a friend WAY too soon. A friend who never got to see her own 40th birthday.
I also experienced the bliss of choosing someone to be my partner…for life! To choose a love for eternity. To stand up in front of your closest friends and family and declare your love and intention for each other. And I learned what it feels like to create a life inside my body. It’s freaky and magical. You witness not only your baby grow within, you experience yourself growing and expanding while simultaneously that naive girl fades away. I learned what it feels like to give birth naturally; to actually surrender and let my body do it’s thing. I learned what it feels like to hold your creation, in your arms, for the very first time – your life and heart opening so wide, you can’t believe you can hold a love this strong inside your body.
The 30s were full of lessons….maybe a little too full. While I did experience a few moments of the adventure I crave, my life was mainly full of stressful, challenging, and life-changing events. I had to reinvent myself over and over again so I didn’t really get to play in my 30s…. and that’s about to change. While I took a lot of lemons and repeatedly turned them into lemonade, I’m going to dig deeper and not let anything stand in my way anymore. Self imposed limits and doubts be gone!
My 6-year old told his grandfather last night, “I am smart. I am strong…and I can do anything!” Amen to that! And I’m about to take a page from his book now. Sweet little boy.
I’ve declared my 40s the decade of exploration and inspiration…filled with joy and dreams fulfilled. Oh yeah! It. Is. On. This is the decade I live in my truest self. The self that has gone through the fire and emerged victorious. In my 40s, I will live and love BIGGER than I ever have before. I’m gonna own this decade. I’m declaring my intention to live the life I’ve craved – joyously, irreverently, unapologetically and full of humor. I survived all the lessons I received in my 30s and am stronger for it. I healed my body both physically and spiritually. I am ready. And the time is now.
I took the past few days to sit and connect to my true self and to just listen; listen and discover what I wanted for myself this decade – what would truly bring me happiness. You know, the idea of happiness has been under attack a lot lately. For some reason, feeling and being happy is not in fashion these days. It’s looked down upon as a fleeting, superficial emotion. Well, I’m not talking about that kind of happiness; the one that can be bought or obtained temporarily.
I’m talking about the happiness that is deeply nourishing, that comes from living authentically, gracefully, joyfully, with gratitude and strength. The happiness that comes from trying new things, feeling satisfied, fulfilled and in your flow. And, very poetically when I sat down to write out what I wanted to learn and discover about myself, people and life, 40 experiences emerged. Forty experiences that will bring me true happiness for having tried them on for size. I’m open to more of course, but these are all the things I’ve ever wanted to do but haven’t done yet…until now…from the simple to the sensational. This is the decade I become the adventurer of my soul and do the things that will light up my life. Let the decade of true happiness begin!
My 40 Things To Happy
1. Discover my ancestry and genomics. (Bonus points if I become famous enough that some TV show like Finding Your Roots or Who Do You Think You Are does the work for me.)
2. Introduce myself to one new person a week and listen to their story.
3. Make relationships with local farmers and get connected to the land.
4. Learn to play the piano…again…so I can finally make the terrible/wonderful “Jen sings your favorite soulful hits” CD I’ve wanted to impose upon my friends and family for years.
5. Pack the family in an RV and travel the U.S.
6. Dance around the world and learn a traditional dance in every country we visit starting with Flamenco.
7. Learn to speak with a British accent…just because.
8. Visit at least one new country every year.
9. Buy a sari and crash (er, um attend) an Indian wedding. Done! 2/7/15
10. Sit to have a portrait painted of me all 19th century style or like Kramer on Seinfeld.
11. Take a silent meditation retreat. What?!?!?
12. Give back to my community through weekly volunteer work.
13. Put my phone away at 5 pm every day and stop checking emails and Facebook!
14. Experience an African safari and not freak out at seeing real animals…in nature…where they live.
15. Find a gospel choir or Kirtan group to join and belt my soul out.
16. Take an improv class and find my inner child. Where did she go? Who knows but I’m ready to play!
17. Spend a summer overseas to kick the tires on this location independence thing.
18. Ride in a hot air balloon and face my fear of heights.
19. Sing Karaoke regularly…because, why not?
20. Take a private jet to a private island; sipping on champagne and eating caviar like the rich and famous do (they do that, right?) I’m looking at you Richard Branson.
21. Dance in a ballet recital (children’s or adult’s recital, I’m not picky)
22. Learn to make my own hair and body care products from real food ingredients.
23. Learn to make natural remedies for the family. Get back to the skills and knowledge of my grandmother’s time.
24. Take a Cross Cultural Solutions trip with my family. I’ve wanted to do this for over a decade!
25. Take my son sledding. He’s never seen snow! Done! 2/6/16
26. Take one of those painting vacations you see old ladies do in the movies…and I don’t know how to paint.
27. Learn how to sew and make a dress. Seriously.
28. Cook and eat in Sicily with Divina Cucina. Figure out how to make gluten-free Sicilian pastries.
29. Drive a vespa through the streets of Florence.
30. Dress up all sassy and dance the night away in Miami with my man. Done! 4/5/15 31. Try out a transformation retreat at Esalen. (It’s not only for naked hippies apparently) Done! 1/23/15, 7/29/15, 2/12/16 #imaddicted
32. Create a monthly “salon” at our home featuring artists and live music.
33. Learn how to survive (in the woods or without electricity or if a bear is near. I mean, what do you do if a bear is approaching? What do you do? Get big? Play possum? Idon’tknowandIneedtostoppanicking.) Point is, become self-sufficient.
34. Shop the souks of Marrakech. I find shopping at Old Navy overwhelming at times. I can only imagine what an explosion of sights, smells and sounds this would be.
35. Learn to stand up paddle board on the Russian River. Happening this week!
36. Publish more books to support others’ transformations and my own. I like to write – go figure!
37. Let myself cry more.
38. Meditate every day. EVERY DAY, JEN WITTMAN, I’M TALKING TO YOU.
39. Take the journey within and see where it goes. Find weekly opportunities to connect with nature and spirit.
40. Keep learning and growing and give, give, give.
What would light up your life? Share your inspiration in the comments below.
I leave you with this…because I’m happy!
To help you nourish yourself with happiness and live >i>your truth, I provide a ton of resources on healing your thyroid naturally, including:
- Our totally free Thyroid Healing Type Assessment, Report and Coaching Sessions
- Right here on my blog, where I talk about what’s worked best for me and my clients, as well as the latest research and resources I come across. You can subscribe to get new blog posts delivered right to your email by signing up on the righthand side of the page.
- My book, Healing Hashimoto’s Naturally — part memoir, part instruction manual for how I personally healed my Hashimoto’s disease.
- My exclusive free 6 Thyroid Myths That Can Keep You From Healing workshop — with info on the comprehensive Thyroid Fix in 6 program, which walks you through, step-by-step, the exact actions you need to take to heal your thyroid and get your life back! We’ve seen hundreds of participants in the Thyroid Fix in 6 avoid, decrease, or even eliminate the need need for thyroid medications.
- The incredible Your Best Thyroid Life Video Bundle, in which I personally invited 27 of the world’s top health experts to share their best tips for living with and healing thyroid disease.
The time is now–to heal physically and spiritually, do the things you want to do and create the life you’ve always wanted.
Jen Wittman is a Certified Holistic Health Expert, Chef, Author & Vitality Coach, who teaches women how to reverse thyroid and autoimmune conditions naturally. She’s helped hundreds of women decrease (or even eliminate) their thyroid medications and has helped others stay off thyroid medication entirely.
Through her free Thyroid Healing Type Assessment, Jen teaches easy and simple steps to thyroid healing that can fit into your busy day. She also provides print outs to bring to your next doctor’s appointment so you can get the support and respect you deserve.