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Home If the line, "Life begins at 40" is true, what are the life hacks that can make my 40s my best years yet?

If the line, "Life begins at 40" is true, what are the life hacks that can make my 40s my best years yet?


Have you started asking and saying, “Where has time gone?”, “Is this life really the one I want?”, “Time is precious!” 

Life’s curveballs thrown at us may trigger these moments of introspection. These questions lead us to take a pause and think about what matters in life. 

A hundred years ago, 54 was the average lifespan in the US. Now, it has gone up to 75! That’s why among the age groups, the 40 to 60 years of age is the least studied one. Nowadays, research is exploring how individuals entering the stage of middle adulthood can prepare for it and the changes it brings so that they can live longer and have a fulfilling life in society. 

Navigating middle adulthood

Many Western societies think of middle to late adulthood negatively, overemphasizing physical and mental decline as something scary. A sense of low-self worth is associated with reaching midlife.

Thus, many experience stressors and challenges related to the perceived effects of aging. These stressors are further enhanced by real shifts in one’s physical health, relationships, career and finances. 

What can we do to progress in our 40s with satisfaction? 

  • Change is inevitable. Accept it as reality and live true to yourself. 

A shift to a more adaptive and growth-centered mindset helps us to soothe our worries. It helps us find satisfaction in this season. Hairline, skin texture and quality, joint mobility. These will change. First, we can assess how we really feel about this transition period. Processing our feelings helps us manage our stress and lead us to a more solution-based mindset. 

“How can I adapt to changes during midlife?” 

By 40 years old, you have accumulated experiences and dealt with pressures from society to conform. You have seen your own strengths and limitations. By this time, you have more wisdom to look back and decide. 

“How can I use my strengths and experiences to write the story of my life?” 

  • Continue to find areas of growth, personally and professionally. 

People in their midlife show an increased desire to invest in the good of the community and to build lasting relationships. This period of change is a good opportunity to connect with people who are on the same journey. 

An unfortunate symptom of our desire to change things is deciding based on impulse and engaging in indulgent behaviors. The satisfaction we are looking for will come from first acknowledging that we have grown by leaps and bounds! Let’s celebrate our past growth! Then use our decisiveness and independence to assess other areas with room for growth. 

Go easy on yourself too! As you feel your inner self-critic ambush your self-esteem, know that a slump in our 40s is normal. You will get over it! 

  • Break down big challenges into small steps. 

Whether you are dealing with physical changes or stepping into new responsibilities in midlife, investing on your goals will give you both short-term and long-term joy. List down the things you prioritize and break them down into small and actionable steps. You become a more resilient and stable person in the long run. 

For example, our sleep habits, diet and physical activity will influence the quality of our midlife. 

  • If you were not so active before, include simple exercises or enjoyable physical activities into your routine. 
  • Check your diet and relationship with food. Since the risk for developing lifestyle-related and metabolic diseases increases with age, find realistic ways to incorporate more whole-food, fruits, vegetables, minerals, and antioxidants to your diet. 
  • Sleep has an influence on our mental wellbeing too. Make sure that your sleeping environment and your bedtime routines are conducive for sleep. 

  • Pursue connectedness. 

Decisions in the past definitely have affected the quality of our current relationships. During midlife, there might be feelings of grief and loss, loneliness or emptiness, sadness, anger and confusion. 

What are the things that are within your control now? Reaching out to others and connecting with them in order to bring in friendly and caring relationships back to our lives is life-changing. 

You can continue or start a hobby that will not only give you another challenge and a sense of purpose, but also enrich your social circle. You can also start some volunteer activities that make use of your skills and strengths!

Midlife might usher in feelings of unhappiness, but changing your perception and preparing for it can make it a happy decade in life! Arm yourself with knowledge, and live a life that is satisfying and full of gratitude. 

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If the line, "Life begins at 40" is true, what are the life hacks that can make my 40s my best years yet?
Brandon Resasco