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I turned 60 a couple of years ago, and it made me stop and look back at my life, the things I’ve done, the ‘mistakes’ I’ve made, and the things I haven’t done yet. I’ve learned so much about myself just in the last 10 years.

I went through so many trials and challenges. There were days when I wasn’t sure I could pick myself up out of whatever situation I was facing at the time. I’m proud to say I did!

In all this reflection, I realized I needed to make some drastic changes in my life in order to be happy. And I mean drastic!!

Here’s a tiny recap of how my life changed in the last 10 years:

  • I left my abusive relationship just after I closed my salon and declared bankruptcy
  • I had to beg and borrow from family to carry me through the next few months
  • I left my 25+ year hairstyling career and created my own job
  • I left Canada with two suitcases on a one-way ticket and moved to Guatemala

There was a poop ton of stuff that happened in between those major life struggles, but that’s it in a nutshell. I knew at 52 years old that I had better do something, or my life was going to suck forever, and I had no intention of subscribing to that anymore.

My life hasn’t been easy at all, and when I left my relationship back in 2012/13 (I forget the exact year), I made a promise to myself to never let anyone treat me like that again.

But I knew I had to change, heal, and grow—a lot. So I did. The healing and growing part never ends, and it’s such a beautiful thing.

Ah, well, those are behind me now.

I don’t make it a habit of wallowing in the sorrow of days gone by. Neither should you. What’s done is done. Take what you need from the situation and leave the rest. Anyway, I look back and think about all the things I’ve learned and all the things I need to carry with me moving forward in my life.

I’d like to share them with you. And, like me, take what you need and leave the rest.

11 Things You Should Do So Your Life Won’t Suck Anymore

1 Immerse yourself in learning new things.

I’ve taken courses, read PDFs and eBooks, watched YouTube tutorials and webinars, you name it, I did it. I used to hate learning anything new. I always thought it was too time-consuming, and I was too dumb. Both are false. The things you learn are valuable and will help you on your journey in life, whatever that may be.

Take some time each week to learn something new. You never know when you’re going to need it or how useful it will be for you in the future. And you aren’t dumb, either.

You can learn anything you put your mind to.

2 Use your voice more often.

Stop letting people walk all over you. Stop letting people take advantage of you. If you say yes and mean to say no, start saying no. Learn to value yourself and your time. Take a thick black magic marker and draw a solid boundary line between you and others.

Stand up for what you believe in. Don’t agree with everyone just for the sake of fitting in or to avoid an argument. Find your voice and use it. Speak up and speak out. People will learn to listen and respect you more.

3 Get up fast when you’ve been kicked down.

I’ve been kicked down more times than I can count. Every new year, I always start with, “Oh, this is gonna be the best year ever,” then, month after month, something stops me or kicks me down. Nothing keeps me down anymore. I wipe away my tears, brush off my butt and get back up fiercer than before.

When something doesn’t go our way, it’s the Universe keeping us from something that is no longer good for us or trying to get our attention and steer us in another direction. Things happen for a reason. Sorry to have to throw that cliche at you, but it’s true.

We may not find out the reason for a very long time. That’s ok. Just get back up anyway, rethink your strategy, and start something else.

4 Stop guarding your heart.

Stop being afraid of love and holding back on love. There is nothing bad or ugly about love. Everything about love is beautiful. I loved a man who I knew was eventually going to leave me. It didn’t matter. I loved him anyway; it was one of the best relationships I’ve ever had. I will never regret that love. I grew so much as a person because of it.

Love is to be felt, enjoyed, and shared. Don’t regret anything about love, and stop locking up your heart. You’re only depriving yourself of the most beautiful feeling in the world. Yes, sometimes hurt comes after love. Love is still more beautiful and powerful than any hurt.

Embrace love.

5 Push the envelope.

Go knock on doors you wouldn’t normally knock on. Say yes to things, events, and opportunities that you normally would say no to. Tackle new projects head-on. Jump at chances that are placed before you. Step outside of your comfort zone and start having more faith in your abilities.

We say no to new adventures or opportunities because of a lack of self-confidence. We don’t think we’re good enough, smart enough, or whatever enough. You most certainly are good enough. Say yes more to things in the new year and figure out how to do them later.

The answers will come. Trust me on that.

6 Leave the pain behind.

Whoever or whatever hurt you in previous years must be left behind. Holding on to all this pain serves you no good whatsoever. Pain is very debilitating and heavy. If you keep hanging on to pain and grudges, you will never be free to move forward in the new year or with your life.

Do yourself a big favour. Release it all now. Forgive those who hurt you. Write yourself a truth letter (more on how to do that at the end of the article) to all who have hurt you, pour out all your anger and hatred, and then let it go. Burn or shred the letter and move on.

You have got to get rid of this pain once and for all. You’re only hurting yourself more and more.

7 Dump toxic people.

Every single toxic person in your life now is sucking the energy and life out of you. Think of how you feel when you are around this person and how you feel when you leave them. I’m gonna guess you feel exhausted and irritated.

For many people, that toxic person is a family member or, worse yet, their spouse. You can safely distance yourself from toxic family members. This article might help. If it so happens your spouse is toxic, well, could it be time to end your relationship?

This article might help with that.

I didn’t say it was going to be easy, but I did say if you don’t want your life to suck anymore, you do need to dump these things. Do what you want with this information.

8 Take more time for yourself.

Go do more things for YOU! Go do more things that bring you joy, make your heart sing, and motivate you to sing, dance, and laugh out loud.

So many of us are people pleasers; we do everything for everyone else and not enough for ourselves. It’s time to end that nonsense and start doing things for you first! Everyone else can wait.

You are number 1.

9 Take no sh*t.

Never, and I mean never, let anyone disrespect you or talk down to you. Ever. Say no to bullying, no to rude comments, no to belittling, say no to all of that nonsense, once and for all.

We show people how to treat us, and if you’ve let them disrespect you in the past, it’s up to you to put a stop to that ASAP!

Put your hand up, say nope, and walk away.

10 Be grateful every day.

Start your day with gratitude instead of moaning and groaning when you get out of bed. So many of us dread waking up to another work day, family life day, or whatever day, and we crawl to the coffee maker and hope for the best.

That’s no way to live.

As soon as you open your eyes in the morning, say thank you for a new day of life and go about your day embracing all the wonderful things you have in your life.

11 Be kind more often.

The world needs more kind and loving people. If you can’t find one, be one. Kindness is free and everyone should be sprinkling it everywhere. When you are kind to someone, it brings them joy, which, in turn, will also bring you joy.

Be kind to a stranger, a homeless person, an elderly person, hold the door open, buy someone a coffee, my God the possibilities of kind things you can do are endless.

Just be kind to at least one person every day and watch how your life changes.

How to write a truth letter

I told you earlier that I would show you how to write a truth letter. Here is what I do.

This is by far one of the best ways to free yourself from anger, hurt, and pain. This is what I do when I have to write an open letter to anyone who hurt me.

  • sit quietly with no distractions
  • turn on some nice soft music and light candles or burn essential oil (lavender is best)
  • notepad and pen or computer in Word, whatever, just start writing
  • get out all the hurt, the things that annoyed you and made you angry
  • write until you can’t write anymore
  • read it back, cry your eyes out, breathe deep, and then
  • burn it!

Trust me on this one; you will never feel so much liberation until you do this. This is one of the best forgiveness and release techniques I have ever done. Try it and see.

In closing

Life is too damn short to be miserable and be stuck with miserable people or in a miserable job. It’s up to you to change things in your life. No one else can do that for you.

So, how bad do you want it?

Peace and Love

xo iva xo

Author: Iva Ursano

Title: Writer

Expertise: Anti-Aging, Mental Health

Iva is a 60-something woman, originally from Northern Ontario, Canada, who now resides in sunny Guatemala. She helps women over 50 love the skin they're in and empowers them to live their best lives ever. When she's not blogging, she's out on her scooter feeding and rescuing street dogs.  

You can also check out her amazing eStore here. It is full of powerful self-help eBooks, personal development courses, and so much more—ALL at affordable prices!

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  1. I love this one Iva! Thank you!
    I so appreciate your wisdom – wishing you all the best each day. You deserve heaps of love and joy!

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