Life is filled with endless opportunities and every day is a chance to steer yourself toward a more fulfilled and happier life.
But how many times have you held yourself back from experiences and opportunities? How many times have you given up on your dreams or passions because you thought they were unattainable or you were too busy? If you could wind the clock back, would you?
What if I told you that it’s never too late to make drastic changes in your life?
I am Dr. Debi Silber and welcome to another episode of A Dose of Dr. Debi. Today, we will be discussing how we often prevent ourselves from achieving what we are truly capable of and why it’s never too late to pursue our life’s calling or make significant changes in our lives.
In This Episode
- Listen to Dr. Debi as she shares the moment that changed her life
- Understand the importance of reflecting on your personal journey
- Learn why it’s never too late to start something new or make changes in your life
Hi there. Welcome to another Dose of Dr. Debi and today I wanted to talk about how it’s never too late. And the reason why I want to talk about that is, you know on Facebook, sometimes you get those “memories” that show up on your timeline? Well, I had a memory show up, and it was such a milestone for me. It impacted me so much that I shared it. It impacted everybody who saw it. I put it in my weekly newsletter, and I got a lot of great responses from there, too. I thought I would share it with you, with the hopes that it’ll inspire you, too.
I actually want to read what I wrote, and then I want to talk a little bit about it.
A meaningful memory popped up on my Facebook timeline today. I find that we’re so busy thinking about what we need to do, what we haven’t done, and what we could do better. Yet, when we take the time to reflect on where we were a month, a year, 5 years ago, we often realize how much we’ve done, how resilient we are, and more importantly, who we’ve become because of what we’ve been through along the way.
When this “memory” showed up on my timeline, it was a great time to reflect on a personal journey of trauma to transformation, and coming out of it with the inspiration for what I’m blessed to say, has helped thousands of others do the same.
Life is filled with so many opportunities to see how resilient we are. These things don’t happen because we’re unlucky or we’re destined to live a painful story as victims of what’s happened to us. Things simply happen, and it’s what we do with these things that matter most. Yes, we can have our story, but becoming the hero or heroine of our story is a much better story. It’s through “opportunities” in the form of negative experiences, toxic relationships, and painful exchanges that we can let that define us, or we can find the strength to slowly and steadily rise above. I love that saying by Eleanor Roosevelt: “A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.”
Well, my tea bag self has been in hot water a few times in the form of the loss of loved ones, a disease that nearly ended my life, and heartbreaking, soul-crushing betrayal. Each experience had its own unique healing protocol, and each one left me with insights and strength gained from moving past them.
How would I define the healing process? Messy, uncomfortable, kind of like an “ugly cry”. Definitely not graceful or pretty, yet there’s something so beautiful about the process of self-discovery, especially when you can look at it from the other side and see from a healed space how strong, resilient and powerful you’ve become because of it.
After my painful betrayal, I was desperate to understand how the mind works, why people do these things, and how I can heal. I realized that boundaries were being crossed and I never took my needs seriously. Something had to change and that was me. So, at 50, with 4 kids, 6 dogs, and a business, I enrolled in a PhD program. I honestly had no clue how I’d manage it, pay for it or find the time to go through it. But since “nothing changes if nothing changes,” that betrayal was the catalyst for my life to change more than I would ever realize.
Talk about the unknown—have you ever done something without having any idea what would show up? Where, you felt so guided to do something, say something, try something without having any idea why? Yep, that’s exactly what happened and the pull was so strong that I just decided to go with it.
So here’s what my Facebook memory reminded me of, and I invite you to consider what memories you can think about to remind you of what you’ve been through, too.
1 – My 79-year-old fellow graduate friend who got his PhD along with me, letting me know that I can never use the excuse “you’re too old to do something” ever again
2 – Family to celebrate this milestone with
3 – Getting “hooded” as part of the PhD ceremony
4 – The minute after giving the commencement speech for my class and knowing that the words I just spoke would serve as the inspiration behind my book, Trust Again: Overcoming Betrayal and Regaining Health, Confidence and Happiness.
5 – My study chair, who said: “Debi, I believe you’ve discovered a process here,” and then the 5 stages from Betrayal to Breakthrough was birthed.
That was such a life-changing moment. And I’m sharing this because we don’t realize what happens when we’re in motion. I remember one of my mentors saying, and if you’ve listened to these shows long enough, watch the shows enough, you’ll hear me say: “You can’t steer a parked car.” And it’s so true. It’s only when we’re in motion do things happen. And, “You can’t course-correct standing still,” which is what another one of my mentors said and it’s so true.
We need to be in motion to see these things. And so often I see people who say: “Well, I’m just too old to do something.” You just heard it here, my 79-year-old fellow graduate friend picked up and got his PhD at 79. I thought I was crazy getting mine at 50, but 79!
Or I always think of Louise Hay of Hay House. Louise started Hay House at 60. Or sometimes I’ll look up athletes later in life and you see that they started in their 50s, in their 60s, and here they are looking and feeling so great.
I see it so often where people are just so settled in their ways. Is it really too late? I just told you about my 79-year-old friend and Louise Hay starting Hay House at 60. Is it really too late? Or, is that your way of saying: “I don’t know if I have the energy, the strength, the wherewithal to change what I’ve already created.”
I think so often that’s more the case, coupled with: “You know, I don’t know if I have what it takes to do this.” This means we just haven’t pushed ourselves far enough because you’re so much stronger than you think, you’re so much more capable than you think. And it’s only when your “tea bag self” is in water, does it get tested.
There’s something so often that you’ve been meaning to do, that’s on your list, that you would love to do, try, become. What’s stopping you? When you think about it, what’s stopping you? Is it that it’ll cause a bit of a shake-up with the people around you? Is it that it would cause you to change a well-oiled machine that you already have in motion? Is it that it would cause you to learn something new? What is it?
And here’s the thing. I’ll do a whole other show on this too, regrets stink. You know, when you look at the end of the road and when you look back, if you didn’t do that thing, try that thing, become that version of you…what’s that going to feel like?
I remember reading something about going back to school later in life. And I think it was somebody going back to become a doctor later in life and everyone said: “Oh my gosh you’ll be like 60 by the time you get there!” And the man said: “Well, if all goes well, I’ll be 60 anyway, and this way I can be a doctor when I get there.”
So the whole idea is, what are you preventing yourself from starting because you think it’s too late? I would really take a look and say: “What COULD life look like if I take this on and play it all out?” Yes, it may upset the applecart with something you have going. It may, maybe, upset a few people. It’ll, maybe, inconvenience a person or two.
But I also invite you to question this. How often is it that you’ve put yourself last for everybody else’s sake? I see this with women and I see this so often with moms. Guys, you do this too but I see this particularly with the women. Where we take care of everyone else and if everyone else’s needs are cared for, it’s at that point that we take a look and say: “Okay, it’s my turn.” Well, by that point, there’s no time, energy, effort left for our own self-care. We’re depleted, we’re exhausted, there’s nothing left.
So when you look at it and you feel that sense of unease, that calling. You know it’s real when you see someone else do it and you may get jealous. You may be envious and you may find reasons to put that person down for doing it. But secretly you’re saying (and I remember someone else saying this, too): “When you’re complaining about something, it’s because you know you can do it and you’re not.” And I invite you to look at, let’s say criticizing someone else. Use that same thinking. You’re criticizing someone else because you know you can do it and you’re not.
This is just a big call to action here to take a look at how you’re living, what you’re doing, and more importantly what you’re not doing. I’m not saying at all, don’t be happy with where you are or that you’re never supposed to feel comfortable, and you’re never supposed to be proud of where you are. That’s not it at all. What I’m saying is when there’s that calling inside of you, when you know there’s more, and when the reason you’re not doing it is because it would take too much energy, because it’s too hard, because it would be an inconvenience to other people because I’d have to say no to something else. All of those reasons (which are very likely very often excuses), where the person you’re inconveniencing the most, is you.
For example, when I went back for that PhD, were my kids affected? Of course, they were. I wasn’t as available as I normally was but who was I really inconveniencing? Me! I missed out on many beautiful, sunny days and I couldn’t go out and be with everybody because I was studying, I was writing, whatever it was. Was it worth it? 100% and I have a feeling if I asked my 79-year-old fellow graduate friend, he would say the same thing.
So, from here, I would suggest, take a look at what is gnawing at you. It could be something as simple as growing that garden, taking that class, speaking to that person, whatever it is. And then when you say to yourself: “It’s too late. I’m too old,” take a look, my 79-year-old fellow graduate friend because he’s here to prove it. Louise Hay was here to prove it. Take a look at all those adult athletes later in life, they’re all here to prove it. It’s never too late and you’re never too old.
I hope this inspires you. If you like this show, subscribe, rate, review, and tell everybody you know. And if it would serve to download a chapter of my book, Trust Again: Overcoming Betrayal and Regaining Health, Confidence and Happiness, you can just get the first chapter of that just to see if you like it. You can just find that here.
Of course, there’s the most incredible membership community waiting for you as well. And you’ll find everything there at The PBT Institute. There truly is no community like it. We have live daily classes with our certified coaches. We have programs 24/7 that literally walk you through the Five Stages of Betrayal to Breakthrough, which was one of the discoveries in the study. So staying stuck has now become a choice. You can literally walk through the different stages, we have masterclasses with the most brilliant experts. I’m in their teaching Q&A, forums with the most incredible community all there to lift and inspire. We look at the community as training wheels until you don’t need them. It’s the same thing. You’re not meant to stay in there forever. You’re meant to get your job done, learn to feel safe again, love again, trust again, and then you’re good. Then you move along. Tune in next time for a lot more, I’ll talk to you then.