Living My Best Mid-Life

JoAnna Bennett

JoAnna Bennett, O’Brien Communications Group

18 October 2018

It turns out, the youngest years of my life may not have been my best. Sure, the plethora of vacations – summer nights spent on rooftops in NYC, winter days at a pool in Florida, and even a few Memorial Day Weekends in Las Vegas – seemed like they were part of the apex. And if you asked me during these years, “Is the best yet to come? I’d laugh and say mine was a lifestyle some only dream about. An on-the-go mentality, working in a fast-paced sales environment, more self-confident and self-assured than I’ll ever be again. But one thing that was missing was a sense of self-possession.

When it comes to a start-up, or a company that’s still in the idea phase, there’s an element of excitement. Plans are being made. Enthusiasm and anticipation are in the air. To prove you’re serious, you must be confident. But being confident in your business doesn’t mean you’re truly confident in its success. Even with the best-laid plans, success is not a guarantee. With more than half of startups ending in failure, it’s no wonder you need that grit to move forward.

But it’s a much different feeling when your company is in its mid-life. You passed the five-year mark? You’re golden! You had more experiences – both good and bad – with clients, vendors, and partners. But overall, you were able to survive and, with luck, thrive. You may have been disappointed more than you’d like to admit, but you also had your share of pleasant surprises. You know all about persistence and what it takes to keep the doors open. Your confidence comes from your experience, not your pumping adrenaline. It’s centered in calm, with an aura of composure.

This past Monday, the Ides of October, I made it around the sun for the thirty-fourth time. I’ve always thought I’d be worried or bothered by the aging process, but it’s had the opposite effect on me. I know more about myself today than I ever have before. And in the wise words of Regina Spektor,

“Today we’re younger than we’re ever gonna be.”