Surprisingly Good Things About Turning 50

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There are so many good things about turning 50 that can make this time and the decades that follow the best time of your life!  You can be healthy, sexy, beautiful, and create a life you love after 50.

March 2024 Update: Now that I am 61, I can tell you that even after that milestone birthday, life continues to get better! While most women just see lots of potential problems; I am creating my best potential life!

That being said, turning 50 felt worse than turning 60. I remember feeling lost and unhappy. I began disconnecting from my friends and social life.

This did not turn out well!

I spent the second half of my fifties creating a life I love and getting the coaching support I needed to make my dreams come true.

So read this, not just with the idea of how it will be to turn 50, read it with the idea of having the best years of your life!

Picture of smiling woman with the words: surprisingly great things about turning 50!

Why Does Turning 50 Feel Bad?

Your 50th birthday is a major milestone and it can be scary, depressing, and upsetting to finally hit that age that you used to think of as OLD.

Another reason is that most of us expected our life would be different in some way by now. Maybe you haven’t achieved all your goals or you don’t like the way you look.

I get that. If you spend any time online or watching TV you see an endless checklist of things that can go wrong with parts of the body or with your finances. It can be scary.

As you begin a new decade or maybe are fully into it, you will find that these mindsets really helpful to create a meaningful life of positive experiences that make this feel like the best time of life.

Yet the truth is that midlife also comes with the many gifts. You have experience, strong relationships, and an appreciation for life.

With life expectancy saying you may have decades left, it makes sense to have a positive mindset about your fifties and the rest of your life.

Sara Garska

When most of us think about turning 50 and beyond, the first thing we have to get used to is simply coming to terms with the number 50 in relation to our age.

Overnight, we become 50 and that age can feel so old. For me, it was hard to even say the word 50!

What I have discovered in the years since turning 50, is that my life has actually become better, richer, and more satisfying than I could ever have imagined.

Now that I’m in my 60s, I have never felt happier or more self confident in my life.

50 really is just a number and has nothing to do with how good or bad life is. I promise you that this is true! You can love your life more than ever!

Turning 61 was way easier than turning 50!

What Does it Mean to Turn 50?

Your age is simply the number of years you have lived. My recommendation is to not just get through it but to embrace it!

The age of 50 and beyond, has nothing to do with how good your life is, how healthy you are, or what kind of relationships you can be in. It is a number.

When you stop focusing on this particular number as a measure of ANYTHING, then you finally have the freedom to start living your life on your terms. 

This can be an excellent time of your life. I believe, hitting 50, is a wake-up call to start living your life, the way you want to, if you haven’t already.

By this time, many of us have figured out a lot of things, raised our families, and are ready to see what life still has to offer.

In the past, many women have thought that their life was over and that it was too late to change at 50. Thanks to social media and an aging population, we now know that anything is possible at any age.

Turning 50 does not have to be the end of growing, learning, and changing; turning 50 can be the beginning of finally going after the life we crave!

Can You be Healthy after 50?

There are many assumptions about health after 50 and many women assume that they won’t be as healthy after they turn 50. This is absolutely not true!

You can be healthy at any age. You can have a healthy lifestyle as you grow older and you can be proactive about your health in middle age and beyond.

In the later stages of life, you may actually have more time and money to devote to your health. So in a way, your health might even be better at this time.

Accept that much of your health is in your own hands. Many of the common health concerns of aging are simply do to our diets and lifestyles. You can make different choices.

Healthy aging is more than just about weight too. Having a healthy life includes nutrition, exercise, and consisitent health care decisions.

Choosing to be healthy isn’t about having perfect health care or dieting. I believe that being healthy is also about reducing stress, having healthy social connections, and making positive choices about food and lifestyle.

I’ve read research that says, having positive social connections is the number one healthy thing you can do for yourself. The people you surround yourself with make a difference to your health.

Nutrition and the things you eat matter. Not just to your size but to your overall looks and health.

There is no one perfect way to eat for every person. However, there is clear research that some kinds of food are more inflammatory and that other foods promote health. 

Moving our bodies and exercise is good for us, especially if we enjoy it. Long walks and yoga not only help us stay in shape, they reduce harmful stress hormones.

The bottom line is that your health can be great in your 50’s and beyond.

Can You be Beautiful after 50?

You can be beautiful after 50 and at any age. My mom at 91 gets compliments all the time on how beautiful she is.

It took me well into my fifties before I discovered my own beauty. Beauty is physical and it’s also an attitude.

Despite the physical changes that come with growing older, we don’t have to think less of ourselves.

The type of care we give ourselves may change but it doesn’t mean we can’t feel good about how we look.

The truth is that most of us have to put some effort into being beautiful even in our 30s or younger.

When I think of the women that I think are beautiful after turning 50, I think most about their face. It’s not about the natural changes of aging, but about the attitude they have.

Your attitude towards your age and looks is of greater importance than what anyone else thinks. We can’t please everyone; that is a fact. But most of us, can do more to please ourselves.

Women that smile and have a positive attitude are always more beautiful! Truly beauty is more of an attitude. And if that isn’t your thing; that’s fine too.

Yet the physical part is also important if you want to be beautiful. Keeping you weight in a good range is important. Too heavy or even too thin can affect how you look. The quality of your skin makes a difference.

I’ve written a lot on skin care because I believe it is one of the most important things we as women can take care of.

Our skin is a result of many things, chief among them, what you eat. The short answer to good skin is to eat real food: protein, vegetables, fruit, and healthy fats.

Speaking of fat, it isn’t your enemy. And extra cushion of fat actually gives your skin a smoother look.

This is an excellent time to really pay attention to your diet, how much you move, and how you feel. Taking care of your body and stress will do more for your beauty than anything you can buy in a tube or jar.

At this time, at 61, I haven’t tried any surgery, injections, or Botox to change how I look. I’m not against them, I just like how I look enough to not try them yet.

The things I’ve tried that have really seemed to help are: reducing stress, restricting sugar and grains, eating healthy fats, bone broth and extra collagen, and being intentional about how I live my life.

Can You be Fit after 50?

This is a definite yes and probably one of the easiest to achieve. Our bodies were meant to be functional until the end and are an important part of a healthy life.

There is a big difference between functional and what you often see advertised as exercise. General health advice is fairly modest in exercise recommendations.

These recommendations are aimed at average people, and are more of a baseline. Exercise should feel good and give your more energy, mobility, strength, flexibility, and balance.

What does functional fitness mean? We are all different and have different capabilities. It really means that you can take advantage of the things your own body is capable of doing.

  • It means you can get down on the floor and get back up
  • You can pick things up and carry them
  • You can walk to and from places and do the things you want
  • Your energy is pretty good
  • You feel comfortable in your body

Regular and consistent exercise helps with all of this!

We were meant to be able to walk and lift things! And you don’t have to wait until new year’s eve to get started.

Yet, if you think that you can’t be fit, you probably won’t even try. Being fit doesn’t mean you have to run 10 miles or lift hundreds of pounds though.

What I like about being fit is that I can do the things that I want to do. I can lift my grandchildren up.

I can go for long walks or even long hikes in the mountains. I can jump on a bike and go for amazing bike rides. I can walk around in new cities or countries for hours.

Being fit means you can actually do the things you want to do in life.

To achieve this, you have to make some time daily to move your body. Walking, stretch, and strength training are all essential to maintaining a fit and functional body.

One of the things I love most are online exercise subscriptions. There are ones for any kind of exercise you like.

Most come with a free trial so you can experiment before you subscribe. I belong to three that I use on a regular basis plus I walk and bike on my own. I don’t enjoy going to the gym and working out at home has always been my go-to.

Earlier in the year, my 90-year old mom broke her arm. This was incredibly difficult for her. However, my sisters and I were able to care for her in her home because of one thing.

At that point she was at high risk for losing her independence, her health, and her ability to do many things.

However, my 90-year old mom was functionally fit. She had good balance and the ability to get up and down from chairs or the side of the bed.

If she couldn’t do that, we would have required a nursing home or more care. We did get care for bathing and some things, but in general we were able to take care of her until she could take care of herself.

I’m happy to say that she is fully recovered and still living independently.

While you might grieve the body of your 20s or 30s, if you are here reading, you have a body and that body deserves. You’ll have to come to grips that your body is different.

Not worse, just different.

I think a lot of women have a prevention kind of outlook, which is fine. But I also encourage and recommend that you have a growth-oriented outlook too.

Can You Change Your Life after 50?

This past weekend, my son and his fiancée took me out to dinner to celebrate my birthday and as a thank you.

They commented on how much my life had changed since I turned 50. I had just come back from a trip to Argentina and was preparing to take another trip next week.

They commented that they just couldn’t believe how much I had changed my life! Where I had been a homebody who didn’t really do anything, I had become this cool person who was living a life that they admired.

My life changes are not about just about becoming a traveler. I had become a hiker, a cyclist (of sorts), I have made new friends, I am a blogger, and I have a thriving life coach business.

I have become a certified life and weight loss coach and I get to help amazing women create lives they love too!

I’ve made new friends around the world and have connected with many of you who read my blog.

Since turning 50, I had been trying lots of new things and discovering that I could do more than I had ever realized I could.

At the same time, my relationships with my grown children have grown and I now have grandchildren that I adore. Being an awesome grandmother is super fun!

Picture of author Sara with her grandchildren

Trust me on this, one of the surprising benefits of turning 50 has been that I could change my life in a good way. I didn’t have to be like average people who decide that the best years are behind them.

Of greater importance to me is that I live my best life based on what my preferences are. Not what I think other people would approve of.

My most fun piece of advice is to think about how you want to live your life, not like it’s the end of your life, but like it is the beginning of your life.

It’s almost a rite of passage to dread getting older and feel like your best years are behind you. New recommendations say, it’s important to keep growing and living life to the fullest.

Getting older is more than just making sure you get enough sleep or that you follow general health advice.

Of just as important or greater importance is being intentional about the quality of your life now. These truly can be the best decades of your life.

Can You Get Unstuck After 50?

I felt stuck at 50 though I didn’t realize it at the time. I wish the person I am now, could have talked to myself at 49.

When I was 52 my husband asked me for a divorce. This was the most painful experience of my life. During and after the divorce, I had a particularly severe case of being stuck.

Don’t worry, I have never once as a life coach recommended anyone get a divorce. I love helping women have better relationships even though I wasn’t able to pull that off myself.

I learned from my experience! But at the time it was really difficult and I felt stuck.

Often, we’ve spent so much time creating our life, getting our house, building our career, and investing time in our relationships.

We often cant see any way to change things; often because our lives are pretty good. However, we can still feel stuck.

Something saved me though. It was this blog. I began writing it during the most painful part of my life. However, I didn’t want to write about the pain.

I wrote about other things that I was experimenting with: forgiveness, gratitude, nutrition, and lots of personal growth topics. I tried to live a healthy life and I embraced healthy aging.

I remember thinking that I was going to be in charge of how I lived and experienced my own life. I was going to have the best time of my life after 50.

I called this blog, My Think Big Life because I wanted a different life. I learned how to get unstuck and gradually I began to have a bigger and better life.

My mindset work also brought about physical changes. I lost weight, grew my hair, and got beautiful skin.

It was funny because I became confident for the first time in my 50s. I grew beyond the idea of healthy aging and simply decided that this would be an excellent time for me to do all the things I’d dreamed of doing when I was younger.

I not only survived my fifties, I thrived and have done so many things that exceeded my earlier expectations. My recommendation is that you consider whether you are stuck or not.

Can You be Sexy after 50?

To be honest, I don’t always feel sexy but who does? But you can definitely be sexy after turning 50.

When I found myself divorced after 50, I also found myself not ready to be done with men. I had been married for 30 years to one man and I couldn’t imagine ever being intimate with another.

I hadn’t felt sexy for years and I didn’t even believe it was possible. But it happened. Not overnight for sure. I did some things like lose weight and grow my hair. I started dressing sexier and I also started dating.

At the same time, I was also going through menopause. I cannot even tell you how crazy it feels to be out on a date with a new person and having a hot flash that suddenly drenches you.

I can laugh about it now and I often laughed about it then (after the date of course).

But being out in the dating world forced me to look at myself from a man’s point of view.

At one point, my ex-husband asked me to date him! We did go out a few times but it just wasn’t the same and we couldn’t recapture what we had before.

For the record, it wasn’t my looks that caused my divorce. However, it was definitely my after-divorce looks and new passion for life that caught my ex-husband’s attention later.

I had become a sexy woman and that didn’t happen until after I turned 50.

The Benefits of Turning 50 for Women

When you reach a certain age, such as 50, you might not at first realize that there are benefits. But there are so many surprising benefits of turning 50. This is an excellent time of life.

While you might not always realize it, you have learned a lot about life. You have years of experiences, some good and some not so good. Even the painful experiences are great teachers!

You also begin to take your life seriously. While turning 50 isn’t the end of life, it is a significant milestone and you realize that you don’t have endless years to make important changes.

You might feel more motivated to create a healthy life. You may want to ditch that time-consuming list of things that you do, that are no longer a fit for you.

We often spend so much time looking at potential problems, we forget to simply look at our potential!

This realization of the passing of time is a benefit in that it forces you to take stock and decide if you are finally going to live the life you were meant to live.

While the physical changes can feel overwhelming, you can also improve your health. While you may not be able to reverse everything, you can definitely improve many things with a focus on a healthy life.

At 50, you have probably lost people. You’ve lost people through death or through the end of relationships. I truly began to treasure relationships in a way after 50 that I hadn’t before.

The most surprising benefit of turning 50 for me has been that I finally accepted that I had to control my own thoughts and feelings so that I could have a good life.

I could no longer blame nor depend on others for my life.

This is not a negative. It is the most empowering thing that can ever happen to you!

Friends, family, and my partner have all enhanced my life. However, this has only happened because I accept that it is my own thoughts and feelings that create these relationships.

When I am able to do that—everyone experiences their relationship with me in a more positive way.

Healthy aging is something you can influence, probably more than you realize. You might have the best decades of your life ahead of you.

That is your call!

I’d rather keep looking forward in my life than thinking that the past was the best of my life.

Picture of woman smiling with the words: Turning 50? How to make this the best time of your life.

Good Things About Turning 50

First of all, accept all of you how you are right now. 50 can be a wonderful time. I heard Maya Angelou say when she was in her 80s that, that was her most wonderful decade.

I had a hard time believing it at that time. As a woman in my 40s, I was already becoming concerned about the passage of time and turning 50.

Yet, because of my experience in my 50s, I do believe it.

Coming to terms with my age has allowed me not just to accept it but to embrace it and truly love it. I wouldn’t change who I am now, with myself at any age before.

As a woman in your fifties, you can still choose to live a life that is active and filled with meaningful relationships and activities. I have friends that have started new hobbies and careers that create daily joy in their lives.

I’ve seen friends who have been married for decades deepen their relationships and I’ve seen divorced friends find new and lasting love. I’ve seen single friends have amazing adventures on their own.

The thing is, that everyone I know over 50 who has a life that is mostly good, does it with having experienced loss, sometimes of people or health. They can do it whether they are single or married or somewhere in between.

This time of your life is up to you and I encourage you to make the best of it. None of us are going back in time. We aren’t every going to have the bodies or faces we had at 20.

Yet, you can be beautiful, sexy, healthy, and fit. You can have an amazing life after turning 50 and for many years beyond.

Healthy aging isn’t just about your physical health. It is about your mental and emotional health as well.

Your mind is capable of changing at any age. Loving your life now and in the future decades is a decision you can make.

No one else is going to give you permission to love being older. This is your call and your decision. I really encourage you to do so!

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Keep showing up my friends,

Sara

Sara

I'm a certified life and weight loss coach who helps women feel better and get the most out of their lives! The process of life coaching teaches you to love yourself and gain self confidence in a safe effective way.

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9 Comments

  1. Janine on July 28, 2021 at 3:38 am

    A lovely story! I have just turned 50 a couple of months ago i am eager to find what the future will hold for me an u have taught me to be yourself an b content it’s how u make it! Well done!

    • Sara on July 28, 2021 at 9:04 pm

      Yes! I’m gearing up for 60 now and just as excited.

  2. Marleen on May 2, 2021 at 12:41 am

    Thank for this inspiring article. I just turned 60 early april and at 59 I decided to pursue one of my dreams I have had for many, many years. I accepted a job offer abroad and became an expat in january 2021. I am now living an adventure, learning a new language and exploring a new country since only now I felt ready for it.

    • Sara on May 2, 2021 at 4:15 pm

      Marleen, that is so cool! I’m about to turn 59 and still loving life after 50. Next year it will be life after 60 for me too! Thanks for sharing your story and providing inspiration.

  3. Genda on September 1, 2020 at 6:52 am

    Inspiring and much needed! Make the most of it, its up to you and only you.

  4. Lisa on January 14, 2020 at 9:52 pm

    I needed this article! I turn 50 in four months and have not been very excited about it! I decided after reading this that I am determined to make it fun!

    • Sara on January 17, 2020 at 6:55 pm

      Lisa, I didn’t love it at first but it just gets better and better!

  5. Mark on June 25, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Great article!

    • Sara on June 26, 2019 at 8:03 am

      Thanks Mark!

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Hi, I'm Sara Garska and I'm so happy you're here! Big changes can happen with a shift in thinking. Over time, you transform your life into the one you always dreamed of having. As a certified life and weight loss coach, I can help you create a life you love. Click here to schedule a free 50-minute coaching session.