THE BLOG

'There's Courage in Trying' -- Especially in Midlife

01/16/2013 03:39 pm ET | Updated Mar 18, 2013

I love to see spunk in older women! That's why I so enjoyed this week's interview with Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor on "60 Minutes." Don't miss it! Such an inspiration!
The takeaway, for me, was her statement: "There's courage in trying!"

Justice Sotomayor, age 58, knew as she grew up in the South Bronx with juvenile diabetes that life was not going to come to her. She would need the stubbornness and courage to go out and take what she wanted. Raised by a single mother because her alcoholic father died when she was only 9, she knew that it was all up to her to make something of herself.

Justice Sotomayor saw early what life would demand of her, but for some of us, this realization may come later in life. Life circumstances converge, losses accumulate. Perhaps we see for the first time that we do not want to remain in the same job or role for the rest of our life. You may suddenly see that the plan you laid out unconsciously decades ago will not suffice. Do you then have the courage to try something different? Do you have enough time to change your life? In the end, there's only one way to find out, and that is to try. Find the courage inside to experiment. Open your mind to all of your possibilities. Decide that you are now ready to find new meaning and purpose.

When I ran into my own life crisis around age 49 -- a divorce and losing my job for the first time ever -- I took the time to sit and consider what I wanted more of in life. What did I need to happen before I died? I decided I wanted more fun and meaning, but I did not realize at the time how much courage these goals would require of me.

Going inside and defining fun and meaning can be quite the challenge after decades of just doing the usual. I found remembering the child I once was, and what fun used to look and feel like is a great place to start. You may find your definition of meaning has changing quite a bit over the years.

There are definitely do-overs before it's all over, but only if you're stubborn and willing. Life is constant change, so why not make the changes you choose instead of just rolling with the punches? Take ownership of what you want to see in your future.

You may find, as I did, that there are a few life-changing opportunities well-hidden in misfortune. Underneath your fear of striking out on your own and trying something new and different there is EXCITEMENT. Anything could happen!

Take the time to open to all of your possibilities today. There's courage in trying!