5 Things I Decided to Do (or Stop Doing) Before I Hit Forty

Tally stroke marks counting to five


Turning forty is one of those major milestones in life. It is the time when life supposedly begins and is a significant moment when you realise that who you are now is a mile away from who you once were, not least in the physical sense.

I look back at my teen self who thought knew it all and tell myself I didn’t know the half of it, or the twenty-something self who thought she was fat and wish I could have appreciated what I had while I had it. My thirties saw me growing outwards rather than upwards, and colouring my hair became a necessary chore to hide the grey instead of an experimental change to see what colour would (or wouldn’t) suit me next.

And last year I hit the big 4-0 and accepted that while we can’t prevent the effects of ageing there are still things that we can do to keep ourselves in relatively good condition.


Lose weight

Yes, I’m struggling with this one but know I need to do it once and for all. I have no more excuses. I need to deal with it and, I think I might finally have found a way. But that’s for me to share in a different post once I am a little more certain. Watch this space.


Move more

I need to do more exercise, I admit. I really should move more than I do and get physical. That’s why I like travelling as all the places we see and things we do naturally have us doing and walking more than we do at home. Perhaps I should just travel more and that would sort this issue out!


Stop smoking

I am one of those who thought it was cool to do in my teens. I thought it made me look classy in my twenties until I realised in my late twenties that actually it made me stink, cost me money and turned my teeth and fingers yellow. I finally managed to quit my then almost 40-a-day habit after lots of failed attempts. As I recall, nicotine replacements were quite new and very expensive, and there were no such things as electronic cigarettes to try in place of the real thing. I did it though and I can confidently say that quitting is probably one of the best things I have ever done in my life both for my health and my pocket.


Take care of myself

I am a mum. I have 13 children to consider. I have a home to run, a business to keep going and my studies to do. Time is limited and I have always used time as an excuse for putting off making appointments for dental check-ups or eye tests – even hair appointments. In doing so, I have realised that I’m doing nobody any favours – especially me – and I am just as important as the rest of my family. So now they are booked and on the calendar.


Keeping the brain active

I don’t know what it is about getting older but I am finding the more I have aged, the more I want to learn about things. My curiosity has grown and so has my determination to find out more and I do believe that keeping active – both physically and mentally – is key to a long, healthy life. This year I begin the third year of my degree, and I have also decided to stop talking about learning Italian and to get on and do it.


These are five of the things I wanted to do before I hit forty. I might not have achieved them all just yet, but I am on the way for most of them. Did you make, or do you have any changes you want to make before you hit an age milestone? I would love to hear them. Leave me a comment and let me know!






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