Understanding and embracing the stages of life, as one grows older is the key to a fulfilling and enjoyable life. I was fortunate, at a young age, to know what type of person I wanted to be. But I did not understand what stage of life I was progressing through.
When we are young, we long to be older and established. When we are older, we long for our youthful days. Until we understand and embrace the stages of life, we’ll find ourselves missing out on the best things life has to offer us right now.
The stages of life each have their own unique and wonderful joys and challenges. As we progress through life, the goal should be to enjoy the current stage you’re in so that in the end we have lived a fulfilling and meaningful life. The stages of life are marked by each passing decade.
The First Decade – The first ten years of life are the discovery years. Around every corner is a new adventure. We long to be a “big kid” but this will be the only time in our life we’ll have someone to do almost everything for us.
The Teens – Your teen years are marked by experience. Learning to drive, casting your first vote, attending a party, finding and losing love. These are the experiences of our youthful stages of life.
Twenties – The twenties are for learning. You hopefully attend college and obtain a bachelors or masters degree. You learn who you are and what you want to be. You learn what industry you desire to work in and who your mentors will be. You learn the skills that a will become your launching pad for success in the future.
Thirties – Your thirties are a time of investment. Your time is a scarce resource as you find yourself on the fast track at work during the day. At home, you’re family is beginning to expand. The sounds of little voices fill the air and your heart. This is one of the most memorable and difficult stages of life.
Forties – The forties are not for a mid-life crisis. Those are for people who skipped through the other stages of life in an attempt to get ahead. The forties are for maximizing performance. You’ve learned to balance work and family. Now your focus changes from just getting by to getting the most out of every moment. This stage dictates how well you’ll set yourself up to really enjoy the remaining stages of life.
Fifties – Your fifties should focus on leadership. The experiences in the previous stages of life have endowed you with a great deal of knowledge and wisdom. In your fifties will be where you’ll begin to give back.
Sixties and beyond – The sixties are a time of coaching and counseling. Gone are the days of high output and sacrifice. This is your chance to sit on the sidelines and help those around you progress through their stages of life well.
As we grow older we must not only understand the stages of life but also embrace them. Not fully living one stage only takes away from the later stages of life. When we are young, we often long to obtain the success of the older people we see around us. Do not make the mistake of trying to live their life.
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” – Matthew 6:34. Live for today. Enjoy each of the stages of life as they come. Do not waste today worrying about tomorrow or longing for yesterday.
What stage are you in and what can you do to better embrace it?