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Because I am “of a certain age,” I tend to click on the articles that list all the things I “should” be doing at my age.
“Ten things All Women Should Do Before Age 40!”
“Five Things Women Over 50 Should Know!”
Should, should, should.
Well, I’ve got my own little list of “shoulds,” and guess what? To me, these are things every woman should do (and know) regardless of her damn age!
1. Wear sunscreen. Yesssss. We know who we are—we’re the ones who are lazy and don’t really feel like applying it, and “want to get some color.” We need to just wear it, b*tches. The earth is melting and we will melt right along with it if we don’t take care of our skin.
2. Vacation alone once a year. Why not? What a great way to reset, go inward, and get our groove back. No one to carry our bag or make the reservation. Nothing but free time, books, air, sun, and taking care of our own precious self for a change. Let’s not forget the sunscreen!
3. Make a big purchase. A house, a car, a guitar, a camper, a cabin. Yes, we can earn and save the money to make a purchase big enough to make us break a sweat without justifying it (or qualifying it). Sometimes “stupid big” material things are fun, and we deserve to treat ourselves. If it sparks joy, why not? YOLO, hot mammas!
4. Ask for a substantial raise. We have a great work ethic, excellent ideas, and we actively contribute to the company climate in a positive way. We are worth more money, dear. We must know our worth. If we don’t, we “should.”
5. Learn to dance like a pro. The art of real dancing has been lost, and it’s high time we brought it back. If everyone really knew how to dance, the world would indeed be a better place—if only for the laughter and fun a good dancing session brings with it. So let’s pop ‘n lock it, ladies! Let’s jitterbug as we go. Most importantly, let’s show off at parties.
6. Hire a cleaning service. This one is huge. Cleaning is a time suck. We women often end up doing way more than our share, and quite frankly, it’s not f*cking fair. A cleaning service relieves resentment and gives us much needed time to do the things we want to do, like go on vacation alone with our sunscreen.
7. Plant a rainbow vegetable garden. Yummy! The earth is here, just waiting to be of service. But, even if we live in an apartment, we can still plant container tomatoes and lemon trees.
8. Walk 20 to 30 miles a week. Or more! Walking is amazing. No crazy cardio. No sprints. Just straight up walking, all day, every day, every where. It’s the absolute best for our bodies, minds, bones, and spirits. It’s great for keeping the buns high and tight too, right?
9. Write a memoir and leave nothing out. We can write a memoir at any age. Our life story is special. We each have unique experiences and it’s good to write them all down. Our stories tell our bigger story. They help us see patterns and cycles, and they help us grow.
10. Change the damn oil in our cars. Let’s just learn how to do this one stupid thing so we can stop paying for it already. When we stop paying for stupid things, we save money for the big purchase we don’t have to explain to anyone.
11. Invest. Stop being afraid. Let’s find a financial wizard and start small. Let’s just do the “big girl thing” and make some sound, wise, planned investments so that we aren’t waiting tables or working at CVS when we’re in our 70s.
12. Throw a huge birthday party—for ourselves! Let’s face it: no one can plan a better party for us than us! We know what we want. We know what we’ll want to wear. We know we don’t like surprises, and we know we don’t want to be disappointed! Let’s do it; it’ll be fun. The eye-rollers can shove it. They’re just angry because they didn’t think of it themselves.
13. Learn to cook a few perfect dishes. I’m talking masterpieces here. Two or three meals that absolutely silence our guests and make their eyes roll into the backs of their heads. Let’s get them moaning and groaning like porn stars while they chew.
14. Fire up a chainsaw. There is nothing quite as satisfying or powerful as wielding heavy machinery with expertise and purpose. This is why the boys do it.
15. Know how to do our taxes. Yes, there is peace of mind when we let someone else sign off of on our yearly financials, but why can’t we learn how to do this? We’ve learned how to do other hard things. We can certainly learn how to do this too!
16. Say “no” without explaining why. Why? Well, I’m not going to explain it.
17. Be an extra in a movie. Why not?
18. Spend a weekend in a big city alone. Let’s just feel the vibe and remind ourselves we are rock stars, independent and free, in the truest sense.
19. Purchase a piece of expensive jewelry. If jewelry isn’t our thing…perhaps plan a “spa day”—with services that involve seaweed and expensive moisturizers. Something that costs more than a brand new sectional. We need to treat ourselves! We can afford it because we did ask for that raise after all.
20. Go on a two-week camping road trip with our ride or die girlfriends. This is a “must” not a “should” and it’s high time we planned it. My ride or die gals know who they are. Let’s do it now while we still look good in cut-offs.
Carpe Diem. No time like the present for all the “shoulds” we should be doing at any age.
And if this list doesn’t inspire, my goodness, sweet ladies, write your own!