And thinking about this led me on to thinking about my own approach to life. I have done things in life I regret, sure I have, but I don't spend my life focusing on those things. Sure, I have wishes for what could have been, what I might have done. And yet I am at my happiest when I focus on what's ahead, on how I can live a better life today, tomorrow and beyond.
So thinking this through I found myself asking why am I different from so many other women of my age? What makes me different? I realised that I actually have a five-a-day strategy that helps me live a positive life, which I know will resonate with many of you reading this.
I exercise most days in one way or another. Now, you don't need to join a gym or get a personal trainer, but being active does help. Go for a walk in your lunch time - you'll be more productive in the afternoon. Use the stairs instead of the lift. Run or walk up the escalator instead of waiting for it to deliver you effortlessly to the top. And if you hear yourself saying you don't have time - next time you catch yourself watching TV, that's time you could use to take a little bit of exercise! You can record the TV programme to watch later - but if you don't bother to exercise then you are making the decision to live a sedentary life, which is known to lead to problems in life as you age.
Eating a good, nutritious diet is a given - we all know that we should eat well, and yet it's all too easy to drift into an unhealthy diet, eating take-aways and ready meals with too much fat and too much sugar. Busy lives give us all the excuses we need to live like that! But it's actually very simple to create your own ready meals so that you know what's in them, keeping the salt, sugar and fat content lower. Designate one day a week to making meals for the freezer, and to make sure you buy the right foods, always use a shopping list and only buy what's on the list - and never shop when you're hungry. I have my fruit and veg delivered and it's all organic - so tasty!
Passion is focussing on you, it's about putting energy into something that matters to you, something that inspires you and excites you. Find your passion, and make time for your passion. It will energise you in other aspects of your life as well. This isn't necessarily what you do for a living - it's what you choose to do with some of your time each week.
We all need a direction, something to aim for, a reason for doing things, something to strive for. For me, purpose, unlike passion, is more outwardly focused. What are you here for? What are you doing for others? How do you show your love to others through your actions? Having a purpose will drive you - it's so much more than being about wealth or success. Purpose gives you a freedom from the small things in life that really don't matter, it liberates you. For some having a purpose is connected to what you do for a living, for others it may be through voluntary work. And for many it's about the people closest to you. There is no right or wrong purpose - the important thing is to know your purpose.
Staying connected to family and friends is crucial for living a good life. Being isolated isn't good for anyone, as you become lonely in your own company. Make time for family, give yourself the time to stay connected to your friends. These days we have social media that can aid the sense of connection, but it's equally important to physically connect with people too. Laugh with your friends, cry with your friends, enjoy the passions and purposes of your friends, be there with and for each other, stay connected.