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Your Decade of...

261 Jul 28, 2022

My business coach John Richie recently shared some observations with me on what each decade of life and work represents as we age. 

  • 20s: Decade of Strength
  • 30s: Decade of Stress
  • 40s: Decade of Possibility 
  • 50s: Decade of Power
  • 60s: Decade of Influence
  • 70s: Decade of Loss

These categories may not be universally true, but I find it to be a helpful model in thinking about where we are in the journey, where we're going (and truly knowing we're not alone in the lessons we're learning along the way).

But why these categories and what do they look like?

Read more below of what he shared with me about what each decade brings.


20’s: Decade of Strength

In many ways strength is physical. You are healthy and active.The brain in your 20's is also able to solve novel problems in novel ways. You understand the world with new, heightened senses. Alexander the great conquered the world in his 20's. A fifty year old would have "known better.”


30’s: Decade of Stress

Growing young families, a marriage that is past the early blush of infatuation, financial pressures, and increasing demands at work leave 30-year-olds feeling the stress of competing priorities. 


40’s: Decade of Possibility 

You have some success under your belt. You have a little margin in your life. You can afford to take the risks of doing something new. If it does not work out, you have time to fix it. If it's successful you have time to build on it.  


50’s: Decade of Power 

Your 50’s you are at the peak of your powers. You know how to work all the knobs and dials.  The fifties are a combination of experience, relationship and energy. Authority, which is legitimized power, flows to people in their fifties and they know how to wield it. 


60’s: Decade of Influence

You may no longer care about doing all the work of the fifty year old, but you have learned that there are many important things that are best accomplished through influence. Influence is not a blunt instrument, but a powerful one.


70’s: Decade of Loss

Loss comes in many forms.  Physical, relational, and positional are just a few. It sounds harsh but it's the truth. Research says that the 70's can be a decade of great happiness to the degree that you are able to face loss with grace and courage. Maintaining activities that give you structure, routine, relationships and purpose are essential to a successful seventh decade. 


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