Why I’m finally living MY dream

Why I’m finally living MY dream

“Life, it’s a bumpy ride – but I love it,” says Carol Vorderman

Take it from me, it’s about time!

As a woman in my 50’s there’s not much I haven’t done. But up until now, most of those things have generally been for other people. I’m a mum of two children (now young adults) and a loving daughter and carer to my mother (she’s 88 now!). Until quite recently my main focus in life has been them; my family, friends and loved ones. As a single parent and provider, I’ve done everything possible to make sure they have been healthy, safe, supported… you name it, I’ve done it… often the hard way. But now I am at a time in my life when I have more free time, the school runs are over and I can finally spread my wings, and I’m determined I’m not going to miss out on anything.

New goals for a new chapter in my life

I know our bodies change, the hangovers get worse, and we have to adjust our rhythms slightly, but I have a zest for life now which I’ve rarely had before. It’s like the fog has lifted and I skip with happiness. I honestly believe that it’s never too late to turn a page and start a new chapter of your own story - just take a leaf out of our new Prime Minister Theresa May’s book. Whatever your stance, there is no denying she is making headlines around the world. A recent iconic picture that really inspired me showed 59 year old Mrs May and the 90 year old Queen together, setting the course for a new Government. Whatever your politics may be, that photograph was about empowering women of a CERTAIN age!

Prioritising ME

Being a bit selfish isn’t a bad thing. The happier and more fulfilled you are, the more equipped you are to inspire others. I know that when I have had a day to do the things I love, whether it’s going out on a flight or just taking some much deserved time out at home, not only do I go to sleep happier and more fulfilled but I am better placed to help others. I wake up smiling, properly smiling.

Here are a few of my top tips to help you prioritise YOU:

  • Don’t put others first at all costs: It’s incredibly important to look after your loved ones, support them and champion their best efforts, but this shouldn’t be at a cost to you. You are always going to be your best if you have taken the time to make sure you are fit, focused and content.
  • Don’t do things the hard way: Swimming against the current is exhausting! We can help ourselves and each other without doing it the hard way. A simple word of support, hug or telephone call can make all the difference.
  • Drop the negative people who are in your life: We all have them, they are always a drain and always a pain and generally don’t have anyone’s best interests at heart. Just drop them and don’t look back.
  • Clock off: You don’t have to be on call all the time, if it’s not the right time, say so.
  • Be your own inspiration: Finding a passion or a focus can be incredibly liberating and will not only give you great pride and satisfaction but it’s another string to your bow.
  • ME time is ok: Don’t apologise for taking time to do what makes you happy. Whether its five minutes at the end of the day to soak in the bath, run 10k on the weekend or simply switch off, it’s important to recognise you need ME time – so you should have it.

So what’s MY dream?

Some of you might have heard by now, but my greatest personal ambition is about to get underway when I will take to the skies and attempt to be the 9th woman ever to fly solo around the world. It’s been a short but intense battle to get to this point with delays and complications which are way beyond my control. I’m under no illusion that this is going to be incredibly hard (why do you think only eight women before me have done it!) but my absolute love for flying has really taken off (excuse the pun) in the last couple of years and I couldn’t think of a more exciting and special way to spend my days. I don’t know what will come next but I’ll never stop trying to live each and every one of my dreams – and neither, my friend, should you. Have a moment in the fresh air to think about what those dreams are, switch your phone off and close your eyes and dream it… then start to make it happen… because you CAN.

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New life after retirement

linda30346 27/09/2016

This year I reached my "three score years and ten" and in many ways, life has never been better! Yes, I am not as mobile as I would like to be, as I had Polio as an infant, I've never been able to walk unaided, but a pair of crutches, my little mobility scooter and my car, mean I still have the freedom to be out and about. Since we retired, my husband and I have explored the world by cruise ship and I have visited some wonderful places I never expected to see and still more adventures to come!

I follow my passion too

Lorained8 05/09/2016

I now 60 but feel 25. Four years ago I started following my passion of cycling and trekking and have been all over the place. Trekked to Everest base camp last year,cycled Vietnam and Morocco and cycling around Cuba next month,then I write books about my trips,and so much more. Love this life and Carol you're an inspiration I will follow your adventure.

Not Everyone

OnlyMe1 28/08/2016

Don't drink to excess (if at all) is the only answer and women of a certain age, myself included, should know their limits anyway! I am 56 and hardly ever drink, I don't have to to enjoy myself, it's the company you're with, not the booze, that makes a situation great. I agree that we have come to a point in our lives where we should come first. As a single parent, I put my girls first for many years and quite rightly so, but now, when it comes to being slightly selfish, finances don't allow!

Looking after me

Hopegirl 28/08/2016

I agree with everything Carol has said about looking after ourselves and having time just for ourselves. I've booked some days off from work toward the end of the year so I can have odd days,at home resting and catching up with what I want to do.

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Carol Vorderman

Presenter, author, superwoman