Day 20: Lessons I learned from watching Isabel Allende’s Ted talk “How to live passionately—no matter your age”

Day 20’s post is is about a Ted talk I watched by 71 year old Isabel Allende “How to live passionately – no matter your age” Isabel Allende delivers a very honest talk about her fears about  aging and the revelations that she has learnt along the way.  Although the presentation is about her perspective of ageing as a woman in her 70’s the presentation should really be watched by all ages as their are some real nuggets of wisdoms tucked into her 7 minute talk.

The key lessons I learnt from watching Isabel Allende’s Ted talk “How to live passionately—no matter your age”

Isabele kicks off her Ted talk by quoting a Mary Oliver poem,  “Tell me, what is it that you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” Isabel says she plans to live passionately.   One of the most insightful things that Isabel said was that as she ages she has learnt to let go of a lot of the baggage that she carried such as grudges and vanity, she only wishes that she had started sooner and for me that’s the key lesson.  So often we hear that as we age we learn to let go of the emotional stuff that weigh us down but how much more fulfilling would life be if we started to do that right now. Sure it’s easier said than done and I will be honest it takes me time to get over a grudge – it doesn’t usually happen overnight and this is something that I am working on and I am getting better at.

Isabel makes a poignant comment that ageing in this culture is not easy as society sees the ageing as invisible and fails to see her as she sees herself which is charming, seductive and sexy. Now I  have to agree with the Ted moderator here who pointed out at the end of Isabel’s talk that Isabel is actually all those things. Isabel is living her life by her words and is living passionately.  The way she presents herself in her mannerisms, the stories she shares and her general demeanour communicates that living passionately is not restricted to youth.

Isabel says you cannot just make yourself be passionate, you need to train yourself to live passionately and she does this by saying yes to whatever comes her way. If she is having an off day, a flat day, she fakes it with the right attitude. I guess theres some truth after all in that old mantra ‘fake it till you make it’

Today’s action step

 Isabel said as she ages she has learnt that vulnerability is not a weakness. If you are a regular reader you may remember a post about that very topic on day 16. Letting go of all that emotional crap we carry with us does not make us vulnerable it makes us strong and courageous.  So today’s action step is to just be aware of what it is I am experiencing  and know that it’s okay to simply let it go of anything that doesn’t bring me joy.

If you haven’t watched the talk yet and need a bit of the chuckle hit play and watch right till the end when Isabel shares her passionate dream about Antonio Banderas. Are you living a passionate life? Share your stories in the comments below.