Over 50 & Thriving Series

Get Your Mojo Back and Thrive!

May 29, 2019
Get Your Mojo Back and Thrive!

Lost your Mojo? Find yourself at the crossroads of life and just don’t know which way to turn? The good news is that You can Get Your Mojo Back and Thrive! I’m very excited to introduce my next guest in the Over 50 & Thriving Series, Cynthia Howland from Second Mojo – Life Hacks for the Second Act. who shares how she regained her Mojo after major losses in her life.

Cynthia found herself at 60 in a position of no job and the loss of two very important loved ones in her life. Reading her article I was so inspired by Cynthia and her attitude to recovering and getting her Mojo back. In her article Cynthia discusses ‘finding the beginning in what seems the end’ and shares how she found a new life and brought joy back into her life. I know you will enjoy reading Cynthia’s story and perhaps be motivated to find your own Mojo. You can connect with Cynthia at the end of her article through her Website and Social Media links.

Get Your Mojo Back and Thrive!

I’m well past 60, and I happen to think I’m rocking it!

But it didn’t always look this way to me. It seems like just yesterday, and yet a lifetime ago when my life imploded. 

The Short Version

Six years ago I took an exit package and left a highly successful executive level career in the travel industry.  Two weeks into my new life, my long-time partner went downstairs to make coffee and collapsed.

He died that day.

Three weeks later my mom died.

So, it was a pretty rough patch.

In a matter of 4 weeks, no job, no partner, no mom.

And the silence in my home was deafening. I spun for a year or so then knew I was in trouble if I didn’t make something happen.

The job market does not love a 60 year old woman. And honestly, I didn’t love it back. My days of commuting, board rooms, and corner offices were done.  And so I set out to reinvent my life and myself.

Finding the beginning in what seems like the end

In the beginning it was mostly about personal recovery.

But at the same time that I was picking up the pieces of what had been my life, I knew I had to find a new way of being in the world.

It took time. Two years to  be exact.

And it took tools.

Journaling, emotional healing classes, meditation, yoga.

All those things you do to find a thread of yourself.

And still, every single day, I did something to build my future and new life.

I was a traditional marketing person in a digital world, so the outlook was not great.

I took free webinars, followed digital marketing experts, did research, talked to people I knew – All to try and regain my relevance.

Note: If you’re struggling, healing or starting over, I highly recommend this. Healing is not passive. Do one thing every day that is proactive. That’s the beginning of taking back control. Read a blog, go somewhere new, cook a new recipe. Do something!

Every couple of days I’d pull out the white board “old school” style and list every possible thing that I could do moving forward to make a living in my own way. I still have that board in my garage as a reminder.

“Spoiler Alert:” Not one of them involved a corporate structure, commute or HR department.

I knew I didn’t have much longer financially before I had to get cracking.

My dream of writing novels surely wasn’t going to pay the bills.

I used every “What Color is Your Parachute?” trick I knew.

What did I want to do?

What was I qualified to do?

Who did I know?

When Recovery Turns Into Discovery

Hacienda Alta Gracia Costa Rica

Hacienda AltaGracia, Costa Rica – “Luxury in the Tropical Mountains -Not a bad gig.”  Cynthia Howland image

And then one miraculous day, recovery turned into discovery. Life was getting interesting again.

A former colleague knew I had a penchant for writing and called to see if I wanted to help out in his new business. He was starting a magazine to promote the very exclusive portfolio of resorts he represented. Heck yes! And soon I was traveling about the world to experience these fabulous resorts and then write about them. Curacao, Costa Rica, Panama. He couldn’t pay me much, in fact, sometimes not at all. But that was ok. I’m not ashamed to say I’ll gladly work for travel. And more importantly, I was back in the saddle.

Not long after, fate put me in a position to start working with a couple of smart young guys in their digital marketing company. Again, through a friend of a friend. I was clueless, but they knew I had good contacts, and that I wanted to learn. And that I did. 

I still work with them today. We work virtually 95% of the time – think yoga pants and tea in my own home office, with my pup snoozing at my feet. We talk many times throughout the day and have developed a deep friendship. I’m happy to say they are “age-nostic” and rarely remind me that I’m their mom’s age.

It would not be exaggerating to say they saved me.

Purpose, friendship, financial security. The entire package.

Having said that, I’m always looking forward to the next thing. It’s in my DNA. Always watching for the next evolution of me, not because something is lacking, but because I am open. Open to whatever comes next. After all, if there’s nothing new to come, we may as well close the book, right? Next chapter!

Second Mojo- The Blog

Napa Valley – Cynthia Howland Image

A couple years ago, we were working with bloggers on behalf of some of our clients. As a frustrated writer, I thought, “I could do that!”  But what would I blog about? The name “second mojo” seemed to say it all for me, and so secondmojo.com was born. I’m new to blogging and finally just launched a couple months ago. But I’m loving it. For me, blogging is building an expanded family. I love to write and I love to research. And mostly, I like to laugh, so I try not to take myself too seriously.

I blog about all sorts of things, from my 5 month alcohol free experiment, to my personal survival guide to getting through the rough stuff, to why spaghetti squash rocks.

I’m not going to lie. I was petrified to hit “publish” on that first blog. But I did it.

Checking google analytics to see that my posts have been read in Auckland, Scotland, UK, Australia? Now that’s a thrill.

To have women reach out about the Alcohol Free post and tell me they get it, that it made them feel better to see they were in good company? Gold!

My tagline is “Life Hacks for the Second Act”  What does that mean? 

It means I love to explore every aspect of life.

Yesterday I may have been in search of the perfect pot pie recipe and managed to execute a respectable version. 

Today I’m about my meditation practice and jazzed about a new Deepak and Oprah 21 Day Series. 

Tomorrow, I’m going to document some of my favorite alcohol free craft mocktails.

If that sounds a bit scattered, even frenetic, it’s not.

It just means there are so many ways to find joy in life and it has taken me the vantage point of being 60+ to realize that.

And I love to share the things that make me happy, make me giggle or make me think a little more deeply than usual.

Zen

ZEN VIEW OF BAOASE LUXURY RESORT, Curacao – Cynthia Howland image

Second Mojo- The Life

So present day.

Somewhere along the line, I have discovered gratitude.

I’ve discovered peace.

I’ve experienced the miracle of reinvention.

I like to think of this as my time.

I’ve never been more self-assured.

I’ve never been more centered or more comfortable in my skin.

There are a few “non-negotiables” for me now.

I try not to miss my daily walk – around the park, along the ocean, whatever suits my whim. It’s centering, relaxing and soul soothing.

I try to do some form of meditation wherever I find myself, even if it’s just a few minutes of quiet reflection in the early morning hours with a couple candles going before the lights go on and the blinds come up.

I separate myself from people who bring me stress.

And I don’t do much that I don’t choose to do.

At 60 plus, life is finally  about following my soul on a daily basis.

It’s about giving myself permission to ebb and flow with my soul, and to do whatever I darn please. 

Ahhhh…the sweet, sweet, 60’s.

And am I living my dream after all? Yes, I am.

Does it look like I expected? No, but it seldom does.

After all, dreams always morph and shape shift on us, right?

Am I living on an island writing that elusive novel? Nope. 

But even better, I am writing, and I get to write whatever, whenever, wherever I darn please.

If that’s not thriving, you’ll need to convince me to the contrary!

Best to all of us!

Meet Cynthia

Get Your Mojo Back and Thrive!
Cynthia Howland Image

Cynthia Howland is a digital marketer, content creator and blogger. She founded secondmojo.com “Life Hacks for Your Second Act” after recovering from a “karmic trifecta” of grief. Well into her second act, she’s found life in her 60’s to be exciting, rewarding and the most peaceful time of her life.

Connect with Cynthia

Secondmojo.com

cynthia@secondmojo.com

Ageing Well, Living Well with Sue

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25 Comments

  • Reply Joanne Tracey May 29, 2019 at 19:52

    Your story is amazing Cynthia, sad, inspiring and everything in between. I love your tagline and kudos for you for coming through what must have been unimaginable into a different normal.

    • Reply Cynthia Howland May 30, 2019 at 00:29

      Thank you Joanne. I’m finding the “different normal”to feel pretty good these days! thanks for reading.

  • Reply Molly Stevens May 29, 2019 at 20:34

    I enjoyed this post and needed to read it. I’ve had my ups and downs in adjusting to retirement and have been feeling a bit low on mojo recently. I’ll check out Cynthia’s blog – thank you for introductions her, Sue!

    • Reply Gilda Baxter May 29, 2019 at 23:40

      Wonderful post, very interesting and inspiring. Thank you 🙂

      • Reply Cynthia Howland May 30, 2019 at 00:34

        Thank you! We CAN do these things- even though it doesn’t always feel that way. Have a wonderful day. Cynthia

    • Reply Cynthia Howland May 30, 2019 at 00:32

      Hey Molly, Thanks for reading and for stopping by secondmojo.com . I see you read the “Off the Couch- Over 50 Survival Guide.” A good one for you! Best to you and stay in touch. Cynthia

  • Reply Erica/Erika May 29, 2019 at 23:01

    Hi Cynthia, I glanced at this post last night and then I found myself reading the entire, engaging story. I cannot imagine how you felt during that “rough patch.” You are an inspirational, resilient lady. I appreciate you sharing how it all required hard work. “Healing is not passive.” Your photos are beautiful! I am heading over to check out your blog site. Nice to meet you, and thank you to Sue for introducing you to us:)

    • Reply Cynthia Howland May 30, 2019 at 00:37

      Hi Erica,
      Thanks so much for reading and for stopping by secondmojo.com. I’ve decided that happiness is “like riding a bicycle.” You just need to be a little fearless to get back on sometimes! Nice to meet you and I hope you’ll stay in touch. Cynthia

  • Reply Victoria May 30, 2019 at 00:23

    I have no mojo right now is why I read this. I am too new in my lose to think about moving forward but have signed up for your emails in the hopes at some point I will be ready.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 30, 2019 at 09:09

      Hello Victoria I’m so sorry to hear of your loss and my thoughts and love are with you at this time. xx

    • Reply Cynthia Howland May 30, 2019 at 10:08

      Victoria…I hope you saw my response below. Your comment just stopped my heart. You’ll make it, Promise! cynthia

  • Reply Cynthia Howland May 30, 2019 at 00:40

    Oh Victoria,
    I hear myself in your tone. I’m sorry. The best thing I can say is don’t let anyone tell you when it’s time to “be over it.” When you’re ready, you’re ready. And like I said above, believe it or not, we CAN do these things. And you will. Warmly, Cynthia

  • Reply Debbie Harris May 30, 2019 at 13:23

    Hi Cynthia and Sue – As someone fast approaching 60, who wrote a post about losing their mojo just this week, this was a great inspiring and timely post to read. I loved it and can feel your enthusiasm and joy bubbling all the way through it. I feel for you, having gone through so much in a short space of time but also congratulate you for stepping up and finding your second mojo! Off to follow you now. Thanks for sharing Sue and Cynthia 🙂

    • Reply Cynthia Howland May 31, 2019 at 00:24

      Hi Debbie, Thanks so much for reading and for stopping by secondmojo.com . By the way, I’ve decided a second mojo is way better than the first! Best to you!!, cynthia

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 31, 2019 at 10:15

      Hi Deb, I loved Cynthia’s story and was very inspired by her. We all lose our mojo from time to time but it is good to remember we can always get it back! x

  • Reply Kathleen - Bloggers Lifestyle June 1, 2019 at 09:10

    Cynthia, thank you for your inspiring story of finding purpose and hope. It reminded me of Viktor Frankl an Austrian psychiatrist and neurologist who survived Auschwitz concentration camp. A quote of his says, “When we are no longer able to change our situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” Which it seems you did to find life again. I do wish your post was on our link up Blogger’s Pit Stop so that I could feature it for others to see 🙁
    Kind regards, Kathleen

    • Reply Cynthia Howland June 3, 2019 at 06:50

      Hi Kathleen,
      Thanks so much for reading and for your words of support. I’m afraid I’m not familiar with Blogger’s Pit Stop. Please message me with details. thanks!! Cynthia

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au June 1, 2019 at 11:50

    My goodness Cynthia you are my new role model! I can’t believe what you went through and how you turned it around. Your life sounds absolutely wonderful after such an awful series of events. I’m in the middle of reinventing myself and I hope I have someone who’s a friend of a friend contact me and set me off in a new direction – fingers crossed!
    I do hope you start linking your posts up with our Wednesday #MLSTL party because I really want to get to know you better – and thanks Sue for introducing Cynthia to us all xxx

    • Reply Cynthia Howland June 3, 2019 at 06:53

      Hi Leanne,
      Thanks so much. I do intend to start linking with you. I have been busy with new clients the past few weeks (Yay!) so have been neglecting my blog. But it is on my radar. Happy to have connected with Sue and all of you. Cynthia

  • Reply Miriam June 1, 2019 at 12:47

    Wow, I’m so incredibly inspired. Your story is amazing Cynthia. Love that you’ve reinvented yourself through your journey and grief and come out the other side not just smiling but thriving. Proof that we can do anything if we set our mind to it. Absolutely Fabulous. Kudos to you. xx 🙏💙

  • Reply Cynthia Howland June 3, 2019 at 06:55

    Hi Miriam,
    In college I had a stuffy old French professor who always said , “We can do these things!” Yes, we can . Thanks so much for reading and commenting. Cynthia

  • Reply Cynthia Howland June 3, 2019 at 07:13

    Hi Sue,
    A big thanks for asking me to guest blog and for the opportunity meet your fabulous and supporting community!
    xox Cynthia

    • Reply Sue Loncaric June 5, 2019 at 06:23

      Hi Cynthia, it was an absolute pleasure having you as my guest. Your experience certainly resonated with many and you are definitely an inspiration xx

  • Reply Nancy W Dobbins June 4, 2019 at 07:46

    Hi Cynthia,
    I was so inspired by your story I immediately linked over to your blog and subscribed! I love how you continue to reinvent your life…often we can’t anticipate or plan how it’s going to go and being flexible and inventive as it unfolds is key.
    Thank you, Sue, as usual, for highlighting fascinating bloggers who have so much to offer to us!

    • Reply Cynthia Howland June 5, 2019 at 11:03

      Thank you so much Nancy for your kind comments and for stopping by my blog and subscribing. Change can be good after all! Best, cynthia

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