In this episode, I had the pleasure of discussing midlife fulfillment with Bernie Borges, host of the Midlife Fulfilled podcast.
We discussed the difference between happiness & fulfilment, the most common misconception about midlife, and 2 things that you can do right now to feel more fulfilled.
If you're seeking greater fulfillment in your midlife season, this conversation is definitely one you won't want to miss.
I encourage you to check out episode 66 of Bernie's “Midlife Fulfilled” podcast, where I went as a guest and opened up by discussing my “before fulfilment” to “after fulfilment” story.
If you enjoy Personal Development Mastery podcast, I am sure you will find value in Bernie's “Midlife Fulfilled” podcast!
Listen to my appearance at Bernie’s podcast, where I spoke about my BF (before fulfilment) to AF (after fulfilment) story:
* Midlife fulfilment and midlife seasons
* Midlife is widely misunderstood as a “midpoint” in life
* The 3 phases of life: youth, midlife and end of life
* Youth up about 30, Midlife= adulting, End of life= when health declines, near death
* The distinction between happiness and fulfilment
* The U-curve of happiness
* The 2 reasons why people feel happy again after their 40s
* Can you be happy without fulfilment?
* The role career plays in fulfilment
* Fulfilment and self-actualisation
* Reflect on your own life, become more self-aware
𝗞𝗘𝗬 𝗣𝗢𝗜𝗡𝗧𝗦 𝗔𝗡𝗗 𝗧𝗜𝗠𝗘𝗦𝗧𝗔𝗠𝗣𝗦
0:04:52 - Seeking Fulfillment in Midlife
0:09:07 - The Happiness U Curve
0:14:41 - Exploring the Difference Between Happiness and Fulfillment
0:17:52 - Knowing Your Values and Self Awareness
0:22:35 - Life in Your Forties
0:25:20 - Fulfillment in Midlife: Examples from Guests on the Podcast
0:28:10 - Achieving Dreams and Letting Go
0:33:40 - The Misconception of Midlife
0:39:29 - Actionable steps to Achieving Fulfillment in Life
“Don’t be afraid to fail, because you’re going to learn a lot from failure - it’s going to make you stronger and better.”
Listen to Bernie’s podcast, Midlife Fulfilled: https://midlifefulfilled.com/
Listen to my appearance at Bernie’s podcast, where I spoke about my BF (before fulfilment) to AF (after fulfilment) story:
𝗔𝗕𝗢𝗨𝗧 𝗧𝗛𝗘 𝗛𝗢𝗦𝗧
I am Agi Keramidas, a podcaster, mentor, and knowledge broker. My mission is to inspire you to grow, stand out, and take action toward the next level of your life. Visit my website: AgiKeramidas.com
Bernie Borges and Agi Keramidas discussed the concept of midlife and how it relates to personal fulfilment. Bernie defined midlife as adulting and described it as having three phases: youth, midlife, and end of life. Agi shared his experience of being unfulfilled and unmotivated, and how he changed his life through personal development. Bernie hosts the Midlife Fulfilled podcast, which focuses on inspiring guests and their BF2AF stories, meaning Before Fulfilment to After Fulfilment. Agi and Bernie discussed the lack of fulfilment many people experience during midlife, and how to take action to become more fulfilled. They encouraged listeners to check out Bernie's podcast, where he provides practical advice and encourages listeners to take action to become more fulfilled. They concluded by discussing the misconceptions of midlife and the age group associated with it.
Bernie Borges is a content marketing professional and a longtime podcaster, and he has been in marketing for more than 20 years. He has gone through many seasons of life and has been seeking a level of fulfilment. Bernie fell in love with the podcast medium and has been using it to have conversations on topics he is interested in. He believes that everyone goes through many different Before Fulfilment to After Fulfilment experiences throughout their lifetime, and he has found fulfilment through his journey in podcasting.
The speaker has been podcasting for 10 years, launching two podcasts in that time and taking a break in between. During that break, he had a desire to launch another podcast, but needed to find the right topic. After researching, he realized that midlife topics were focused mainly on women, so he decided to focus his podcast on midlife for men. He wanted to provide a platform to discuss topics that are often misunderstood, such as menopause and divorce.
The conversation is about the distinction between happiness and fulfilment, with the distinction being that happiness is an emotion, while fulfilment is a feeling. The speaker refers to a study conducted by the United States Bureau of Labour Statistics, which concluded that people are the happiest at age 18, then become less happy in their mid 40s, before becoming happier again as they age. This study is known as the Happiness U curve. The speaker also explains that while there are overlaps between happiness and fulfilment, they are two distinct things. Happiness is often experienced in seasons or moments, while fulfilment is a more subtle feeling that is felt in the soul.
The Difference Between Happiness and Fulfillment
In this portion of the conversation, we delve into the journey of discovering the topic of midlife fulfillment for a podcast and the difference between happiness and fulfillment. We explore the Happiness U Curve, a global study measuring happiness across different life stages, and discuss how fulfillment often comes from knowing our values and understanding what is most important to us. With a focus on career as a significant aspect of fulfillment, we also touch upon the importance of self-actualization in achieving a sense of fulfillment in our lives'
Fulfillment in Life Stages
Exploring the concept of values and how they change throughout our lives, we discuss how understanding our current values can lead to self-awareness and fulfillment. We touch on the importance of health as a significant area of life and how people's values may shift from career-focused to family-oriented as they age. We also consider the happiness curve, with happiness generally increasing as people age past their forties and come to terms with their life experiences. By embracing self-awareness and seeking fulfillment in various aspects of life, we can maintain our mental health and overall well-being as we navigate through different stages of life'
Exploring the Concept of Midlife Adulting
We continue our discussion on the misconception of midlife, emphasizing that it extends far beyond what most people perceive. Midlife, or adulting, can carry on until one reaches the end of life when their physical health declines. We also explore the importance of self-reflection and understanding one's values in order to find more fulfillment in life. Additionally, we provide actionable advice on how to start moving towards a more fulfilled life by focusing on relationships, career, and talents. Finally, we touch upon the importance of personal development and not being afraid to fail in order to grow'
Bernie Borges is a midlife wellness advocate, husband, father, and digital native. Bernie has a professional background in marketing, and is the host of the Midlife Fulfilled podcast. Bernie discusses his journey to finding fulfilment and how he transitioned from his first podcast experiment, the Modern Marketing Engine podcast, to his new podcast about midlife fulfilment. He explains how he had to find the right topic to focus on and how he was missing the podcasting experience after retiring his last podcast. Bernie shares his passion for helping people to live more fulfilled midlife seasons, and how they can realise their values and find true happiness.
The conversation focuses on midlife and the misunderstanding and misperception around it. It is often focused on women, however, the speaker is a man and has not been through divorce. The speaker then introduces the topic of the Happiness U Curve, a study that was conducted by the US Bureau of Labour Statistics. The study concluded that people are the happiest in their life at age 18 and the least happy in their mid 40s. The conversation then discusses the difference between happiness and fulfilment, with happiness being an emotion and fulfilment being a feeling. An example is given of someone who is fulfilled in their career but may not necessarily be happy.
The conversation discusses the difference between being fulfilled and being happy. It is possible to be fulfilled in one area of life, such as a career, but still be unhappy in other areas, such as relationships. To be fulfilled is the highest level of self-actualization and is not easily achieved. Career is the area of life in which people often feel the least fulfilled. The example given of someone who is fulfilled but not happy is that of a person who has a great relationship with their spouse and children, but is frustrated in their career. Conversely, an example of someone who is happy but not fulfilled is someone who has followed the career path they were expected to, and feel unfulfilled in their career after 20-30 years.
This conversation looked at the idea of happiness and fulfilment. It was stated that it is common to be happy in some areas of life, such as relationships, but unfulfilled in others, such as career. Maslow's hierarchy of needs was referenced, and it was suggested that self-actualisation is related to fulfilment in career. However, it was also suggested that the key to finding fulfilment is to identify one's values. As these values can change as people go through different seasons of life, it is important to continually reassess what is important in order to find fulfilment.
Please note that while an effort is made to provide an accurate transcription, errors and omissions may be present. No part of this transcription can be referenced or reproduced without permission.
Bernie Borges 0:00
So I'm actually going to give you the simplest definition to midlife that perhaps you ever heard. And here it is. Midlife is adulting I break life into three phases, youth, midlife and end of life
Agi Keramidas 0:23
you're listening to personal development mastery podcast helping you take the simple actions to master personal development and create a life you again for I'm your host Agi Keramidas. A few years ago, I was unfulfilled and unmotivated, afraid I had lost my sense of purpose and my life was merely passing by. Since then, I've been on a journey of personal development that has transformed every aspect of my life. My mission is simple to inspire you to take action towards a purposeful and fulfilling life. And this episode today is all about exactly that a fulfilling life, especially during midlife and you may be in your midlife season yourself. My guest today is Bernie Borges whose wise words you heard in the opening excerpt. Bernie is the host of the midlife fulfilled podcast, a weekly guide to a more fulfilling life. In each of his episodes, Bernie issues at silence to his listeners, inviting them to take action towards greater fulfilment in their own lives. In his podcast, you'll find inspiring guests who share their BF two AF stories there, before fulfilment to after fulfilment stories. As a matter of fact, I was a guest in Bernie's podcast and shared my before fulfilment situation and my journey to after fulfilment, cuts my episode with Bernie on his midlife fulfilled podcast on Episode 66, which is published on March 27 2023. And yes, that's the same date that this podcast episode is also released. Not a coincidence, we planned it this way. In that episode, I opened up by sharing my bf two AF story. We discussed the lack of fulfilment, many of us face during midlife, and also what action to take right now to feel more fulfilled. I invite you to check out that episode number 66 of Bernie's midlife fulfilled podcast. You can get it anywhere you listen to podcasts. And now here's my conversation with Bernie Borges. Bernie, you have a professional background in marketing, and you're also a veteran podcaster for around 10 years now. You are a midlife Wellness Advocate, a husband, father and a digital native by mindset, not by age, as you say. You're the host of the midlife fulfilled podcast and you're passionate about how we can live more fulfilled midlife seasons. Bernie, welcome to the show. It's such a pleasure to speak with you today.
Bernie Borges 3:38
Thank you, Aggie, it is great to be with you on your personal development mastery podcast. I am a listener. It's so
Agi Keramidas 3:46
good. And I will share that with the listener that I also had the opportunity to be interviewed on your podcast not so long ago. So it was great, you know, to have this interaction from both ends right well different person that asks the question, so I really enjoy this and I'm looking forward to discussing fulfilment with you and midlife fulfilment in particular, which is both the topic of your podcast and also what you're passionate about. And I believe it relates very well to my listeners, because it is that age group that and we will discuss about the age and the misconceptions about midlife that there are but generally the the gate of the 40s is considered to be let's say the the one most associated with midlife, generally speaking. So I believe it's going to be a very relevant conversation. Before we discuss fulfilment, midlife, I would like to get a little bit about your journey. Enter in your podcast you ask your guests for you the BF two F story as you said the before fulfilment to after fulfilment. So I want to ask a similar question to you can you take us back in your before fulfilment period what were you doing? And you know what? How did your quest for fulfilment began?
Bernie Borges 5:25
Sure, sure. Well first of all I I really think that we go through many different experiences throughout the course of our lifetime where we can have what I call a BF T AF before fulfilment after fulfilment experience. So I don't I don't intend to characterise it as we only do it once in our lifetime, because we go through so many different stages in our lifetime. In fact, Aggie I replaced the word stages with seasons, we go through many different seasons throughout our life. So it brought me to this podcast, the midlife fulfilled podcast, and and looking for a level of fulfilment that I was seeking was, as you pointed out, I'm a longtime podcaster. And as you also pointed out in the introduction, I'm a marketer, by profession. I've been in marketing for more well, more than 20 years, specifically, content marketing. And within my career journey as a content marketing professional, I started podcasting about 10 years ago, and I fell in love with the medium I fell in love with podcasting. I fell in love with exactly what we're doing right here. And now Aggie, what we're doing you and I were having a conversation around a topic. You're interviewing me, and we're doing it on the podcast medium. I fell in love with that. I think you have as well. Yes. So in that journey in that 10 year journey, I had my initial podcast was an experiment. It lasted 49 episodes, and it was just an experiment. My second podcast was more strategic. And it was around marketing was called the modern marketing engine podcast. I retired it at episode 300. And then I had this void after that, and that's where I hit this B F season this before fulfilment, meaning I was no longer podcasting, and I was lacking it and missing it. And so I had a desire to launch another podcast. But I had to find the topic. I couldn't just because I knew how to podcast, wake up one day and say, Okay, I'm going to start another podcast, I had to think about what what is it going to be about? I knew enough, as you know, as a podcaster, that once you launch, launch a podcast, it's got to have a theme or a topic, and you really have to be committed to it if you're serious about it, and you are and I am. So I put a lot of thought into what is my new podcast going to be about which was a little over a year ago at this time. And so because of where I am in life, I said, Okay, I think I want to talk about midlife, because I did some research and discovered that there's a lot of misperceptions and misunderstandings around midlife. But then I said, Well, what about midlife do I want to talk about? And I guess I did my research, I found more than 200 podcasts around that are about midlife. And almost all of them were hosted by women for women. In other words, the midlife topics seem to be very focused on women. And there's nothing wrong with that. But obviously, I'm not a woman. And so I'm not qualified to talk about menopause, or divorce. I've never been through divorce, happily married 35 years. And a lot of the podcasts were about that. So I stumbled across in my research I just kept researching. I stumbled across the happiness U curve. And I think I've mentioned it to you before, but it's not something that is all that widely known. So if I may, can I just explain briefly what that is? Yes, of course. So the happiness U curve is a study that was conducted by United States Agency, the Bureau of labour statistics a couple of years ago. It's a global study. So even though it was it was conducted by a US agency, government agency to global study, and they, they interviewed 1000s of people across the world, with the intent of measuring happiness across many different decades in their life. What they concluded is and you'll see why it's called the happiness you curve and you by the ways So the letter U, not the pronoun you. What they concluded is that people are the happiest in their life at age 18. Age 18 is when we are the happiest, then we begin to become less happy. And we bought them out, we are the least happy in our mid 40s. And then we begin to get happy again, and get happier and happier as we get older. So they they used they they characterised it as a U curve, meaning at the top of the left of the U is age 18. And then as you kind of go down to the bottom of the curve of you, in our mid 40s is when we're the least happy. And then we climb back up the other side to become happy and happier. That led me to well, if I am seeking more fulfilment Am I the only human being on earth that is seeking fulfilment? While this study is all about happiness? Well, that led me down that rabbit hole. So what's the difference between fulfilment and happiness. And what I arrived arrived at is the following. There is a distinction there's overlap, but there's also a distinction between happiness and fulfilment. Happiness is generally an emotion. When we are happy, it is an emotion that we experience in our life. We can have Seasons of Happiness, we can have moments of happiness, a season of happiness might be a relationship that you're in, that's wonderful, you're happy in that relationship, that relationship, a moment of happiness, it can be your favourite sports team just won the championship, and you're very happy that they won the championship because you love that sports team. That's a moment of happiness. fulfilment, on the other hand, is a feeling. And this feeling is less tangible, because it's more in our soul. It's more something we experience. You can have happiness, but yet be unfulfilled. And an example that I've shared on my podcast is, imagine someone who is fulfilled in their career. They've achieved some level of achievement in their in their career that fulfils them, whether it's by title by status, by economic status, they're fulfilled in their career. But if in their relationships, those relationships are messed up, they're broken, they can be very unhappy in their relationships. So in that example, you can have fulfilment and not be happy. And the opposite is true. You can be very happy in relationships, but also unfulfilled career is the most common simply because we spend most of our waking life working. So careers a big part of our life. So what I've discovered in the year that I've had the midlife fulfilled podcast at the time of you and I recording this, I published 56 episodes. And what I've discovered is that career is the area of life that people lack the most fulfilment, and in a study that I did, not quite as extensive as the Bureau of labour statistics, but nonetheless, I did a survey. And I found that 78% of the people who took that survey admitted that they lacked fulfilment, they were not totally fulfilled. Surprisingly, Aggie surprisingly, 19% of them said that they were totally fulfilled. And I would even challenge that respectfully. Because I have come to believe that fulfilment is equivalent with self actualization. And if you know anything about self actualization, as it's explained in Maslow's hierarchy of needs, it is the top top top of that pyramid, and very few of us achieve self actualization. So while we can have levels of fulfilment in our life, I think it's really difficult for most of us to achieve complete fulfilment. So that is why at the end of every episode of my podcast, at the end of every single episode, I close it out with the following. I close it up by saying, if you're 80% fulfilled, you're doing great.
Agi Keramidas 14:41
I would say if you're 51% fulfilled, you're still doing doing very well. And I wanted to ask you before I wanted, I will discuss more about fulfilment, but you gave an example of someone who is fulfilled but not happy. Can you give me an example of the opposite someone that says is happy, but not fulfilled? What what would that be, so that we can discuss more about the sample, these are the differences between
Bernie Borges 15:07
those two. So someone that's happy but not fulfilled, could be, and this is going to be like the biggest areas of of our life that, that we all deal with our relationships. So you can be say happily married, you can which is a relationship right? You can have children and your relationship with your children is is wonderful, right? That obviously that's not always the case, not everyone's happily married, not everyone has great relationships with their children. But in this example, what I'm saying is, that would be an example of happiness, great relationship with a spouse, great relationship with your children, but you're really frustrated in your career. You're You're unfulfilled in your career. A really common example I've seen a lot of this Aggie is people who are 2030 years into the career, they followed the career path that was sort of laid out for them in their childhood. And they follow that career path. And they wake up one day 20 or 30 years into it, and they say, you know, I've done exactly what I was expected to do. But I am not fulfilled, this is not what I want to be doing. Now that may sound familiar to you again. But that is very common. That is absolutely very common. And that can be an example of someone who's happy in their relationships, if they are but unfulfilled in their career, for whatever reason it may be.
Agi Keramidas 16:38
What I'm understanding in your answer is that both happiness and fulfilment, they're not one
Unknown Speaker 16:46
solid think they consist of different categories of life. So you can be happy in one or some areas of your life and fulfilled or unfulfilled in some other areas of your life. What I also found interesting in your answer, because
Agi Keramidas 17:06
on a few occasions, the term of fulfilment came side by side with the career or this this element, let's say of our lives, which I get it but then you also mentioned Maslow and self actualization. And for me, personally, that relates more to fulfilment van, the courier is do you think courier based on what you have researched about fulfilment? Do you think that the courier element of our life is maybe the most important one on the path to fulfilment?
Bernie Borges 17:50
Not necessarily. I think what it comes down to for each of us is to know what our values are. If we know what our values are, then we can then ask ourselves and ask answer that question, then, what is the most important to me in terms of where I can find fulfilment? So our value system often changes, as we go through these different seasons in our life, our values in our 20s can be very different than our values in our 30s, and 40s, and 50s. And I don't mean ethical and moral values, because hopefully, these don't, those don't change too much. But you know, things like I value, my career and my 20s. But then in my 40s, if I've got children, then my values might be more around spending time with my kids, that sort of thing. So it always stems from knowing what our values are currently, in our current season of life. And then, once we understand that, at that point, we have more self awareness, if he if you're not aware, self aware of your current values, current values, by asking yourself what are my values now? And how do they differ from five years ago, 10 years ago, 20 years ago, then we can then ask the question, then, how fulfilled am I? And in what areas of my life am I fulfilled? We haven't talked about things like health. You know, some people can be unfulfilled in their health, in some cases, because of things that are that they can't control. They may have some health conditions that are not within their control, and they're dealing with them. In other cases, we have self inflicted health issues and people We'll know that they need to improve their health. And they may be unfulfilled because they haven't been able to improve their health in ways that they know that they need to and they want to and everyone's situation is unique, everyone's circumstances unique to them. Of course, I'm not here to pass any judgement or make any broad generalisations, but health is another big area of our life. You know, I've been talking about career you asked me about career and while it's big health is another big area of our life that that we really care about, I think, for obvious reasons. So I don't know if I've answered your question.
Unknown Speaker 20:37
Yes, you have and what you said about the individual person's values, which for me, I would define it through in what we deem important in our life, that is what we value and that changes, and for some people, and maybe for many, it is the career through the through which they will find fulfilment, but for others, it can be whatever it is, in their own individual values
Agi Keramidas 21:01
at that point in time. So yes, you've answered your question very well. And I will go back and ask you, because you mentioned earlier the happiness you care of, and you said that with the results, it's your happiest that 18 which is hardly surprised. I mean, I'm I was very happy as
Bernie Borges 21:22
I was to learn it.
Agi Keramidas 21:24
And what's interesting, then you say that there is a bottom of that yield curve that happens around that reads that age around 14, or in the 40s, which also does my own personal experience, and many others, and then you get happier afterwards. So there are many things out of this that deserve our conversation. The first one is, what is it that happens, you're in fourth this and then people are happier afterwards? Acids is, of course, a you know, there are exceptions, but I'm talking about this general happiness you curve, study that you referenced.
Bernie Borges 22:11
First of all, the study says something very interesting. And they say that, and I find this to be almost questionable, but this is what the study says. And they say that we bought them out at age 47.2.
Agi Keramidas 22:27
I bought that. So I've made good to know. So
Bernie Borges 22:30
that's what they say. I'm not saying that I say that I'm saying that's what the study says. But so what happens in our 40s, again, everyone's circumstances are different. But in general, what a lot of people experience is, they they've obviously been through the 30s 20s and 30s already, and have had enough life experience to experience both ups and downs. So for a lot of us, in our 40s, we don't feel as physically fit and or physically good looking, as we did in our 20s, maybe and in our 30s as well. So a lot of people begin to experience that feeling of, Wow, I wish I looked as good as I did when I was 30 or 28. You know, that sort of thing. That's a very common thing that a lot of people experience. A lot of people look, there's a high divorce rate, globally, so a lot of people in their 40s have experienced a divorce, or have experienced getting fired, or have experienced other broken relationships in their life and just in general have experienced some pain, because they've lived long enough to experience some pain. And so and they begin to think very spiritually about like, okay, so, you know, what's next for me in my life? You know, now that I've been through these experiences, where do I go from here, depending on their individual circumstances. So, you know, that's not a scientific reason. I'm just giving you sort of a, a respond and insert. Certainly, I've read these, but I think you and I can both agree that these are pretty common things that a lot of people do experience.
Agi Keramidas 24:21
Betting I think, if anyone if the person listening right now are in their 40s, especially their maybe their late 40s. They certainly know very well what we're talking about regardless of the the evidence or not, I think, intuitively you you know what happens because you have experienced that don't remember meeting anyone that never had some kind of change changed. So we say I won't use any stronger word, but the chains in that period, it could be more subtle or more profound, but there is something happening Hey, there. So as for the 47.2, that you set them, I'm going to pinpoint where exactly when that was in my timeline and see whether I had some really rock bottom there.
Agi Keramidas 25:20
So, that's there before then. So what happens afterwards, and the happiness starts to increase, when we reach that stage that, you know, we don't look, the same as in our 20s are physical abilities may not feel the same, especially if we don't keep up with our good health regimes, maybe have gone through lots of major things like, I don't know, divorces, or bankruptcies or, you know, things. But what happens afterwards, because it's the other side of the you waits. For me, when I first read about it, I was a little bit surprised, not not, you know, terribly surprised, but I had never realised that it keeps on increasing. Like on the other side, like you become the the opposite of the 18 on the other side of the U. So what happens then.
Bernie Borges 26:13
So let me give you a few examples of from some guests that I've had on the podcast, and then I'll share some of my own as well. So that I'm, you know, I'm being very transparent about myself as well, which I try to be. So two guests that come to mind from the podcast. One is a lady who I believe she's in her early 50s. And very successful in her career, she's had her own business for a number of years, and she's very successful within her industry. She is a bit of a celebrity. And she very well known, and let's just say she's a very successful businesswoman. Well, in her entire career, she said to herself, you know, someday I'm going to get married and have a baby. And but she just stayed focused on her career, and she never really, in her words, slowed down to allow that to happen. Yeah. And so in her 50s, she realised, you know, she's probably past the biological stage of having a baby, she did get married, and she's, you know, happily married and thrilled to be married. But just beyond the point of having a baby, at least biologically, and her sister has a baby. So she has a niece, and she is madly in love with her niece, and she's madly in love with her role as an aunt. And so for her, her fulfilment is just coming to terms with the fact that and I'm going to quote her now. The fact that that's enough, that, that she, it's too late for her to be a mom biologically anyway. But being an aunt to her niece is enough. She loves being an aunt, to her niece. And she has total fulfilment from that role. Right. So that's one example. Another quick example is a gentleman who, early in his career, he was a DJ, and his aspiration was to be a famous DJ, like really a famous DJ. And he actually achieved that a little bit. He, you know, he, he worked full time in the US, and on one gig, he left his corporate job, on a Friday morning, got on an aeroplane flew to Germany, Friday, Friday night, he had a DJ gig in Germany, Saturday night, he had a DJ gig in Germany. And then he flew home on Sunday, and he was back to work on Monday. And, and he was doing that with regularity where he was pretty fulfilled in his DJ life. But then as he got, again, a little bit older, he got married, and then they had their first child. And then he realised that the DJ life was really not congruent with being a family, man. And so he decided that he had to let his DJ identity die. And I'm quoting him, those are his words, he had to let that identity die and, and just be the full time in his case marketing person. And then kind of similar to the first story where he was like, I'm okay with that. In fact, the my old self, the one that I let die, helped me get to where I am right now. So it's my total self. Like so I don't look back on that with any regret. I don't look back on that. Like, that's who I used to be. I just look back on and say, that helped me be who I am today. Right. So I say the same thing. I just look at all the seasons that I've been through, and whether they were successes or failures, and I've had fun yours I think we all do if we're honest, I look back on all of that. And I say, you know it, all of that brings me to who I am today, where my values are today, where I have fulfilment and where I'm still striving for fulfilment, you know, so, in my case, Aggie, I'm 65. I consider myself still in midlife. By the way, I didn't make the point that midlife is not a mid point in your life, because I don't expect to live to be 130. Not that I'm going to predict, you know, my death date, but I probably won't live to be 130. That's pretty rare. But the point is that I'm still in a midlife stage because we go through different midlife seasons. Right. And the only thing after midlife, by the way, Aggie is end of life, which is defined by when we begin to decline in health consistently leading to our death. I don't mean to make that sound morbid, it's just that the death rate is 100%. I think everybody knows that. So Well, it sounds something we want to talk a lot about, we shouldn't deny it either. So in my case, I just want to always be self aware of where I'm lacking fulfilment, so that as I'm in this stage of my life in general, that I'm not lacking more fulfilment than I should be, that I keep myself accountable to myself to be seeking and finding the fulfilment that I want, and that I need to stay healthy. And by healthy, I mean, mostly mental health. I'm fortunate that I'm pretty healthy in terms of physical health. But mental health is so important to all of us. So I at this point in my life, I'm so self aware of that, that I hold myself accountable to that. So again, I don't know that I've answered your question, but I wanted to give you some some examples.
Agi Keramidas 32:02
Thank you for your answers. And there were two things now that come to my mind, as you know, comments, the first one, when you were describing of, you gave a couple of examples from your previous guests in the podcast and what I got us the words that came as you know, characterising this experience, or what happened for them, and I will add my own personal experience, because it adds to the needs, it agrees with what you were saying was, I'm okay with that. That realisation or that acceptance, you said, you know, it's enough for me it. It's that point, when you realise that, yes, I am not 25 anymore. Yes, I'm not 35 anymore, or whatever, yes, I have not done that, or I can't do this that I wanted to do. But so you don't fight the reality of the situation and of your life and you kind of go more with the flow of it, you accept more of it, you realise that's how I perceived it. And you know, as I eat, it agrees with my sense of what is happening. Because I have I am on the other side now of the EU coming up and I'm looking forward to the 65 or two, whatever I'm blessed to experience or destined to experience in my life, and that's a different conversation. So that's one thing that I got from what you answered, okay. And the other thing which I would like to discuss a little bit further, because it is something that you know, there is a misconception about midlife and you you mentioned that the words that you prefer the word seasons in it. And what you said just a few minutes ago was that midlife is not the way that many people perceive it as a misconception that midlife is you know, when you're in your 40s that's the midlife because in the terms of the average lifespan of a human beings that's about in the middle, so that is the middle of life. And then what the decline in the what now you put it really, very accurately. And I think that's a great distinction because I don't know if everyone has understood that and I will, you know, repeat that and then we'll ask you to give some further thoughts about what you said that the midlife carries on until that point that one is really reaching the end of life that their physical health is declining that they are dying, let's say the last part of their life. And that's for the majority of people is not in their 50s It's not in the 60s. It's probably not in the 70s with how things are. Now so it is a I'm repeating again, it's I believe it's a great distinction to be made that you are in your midlife when you're 65 you're still in your midlife if you are, you know, capable and reasonably healthy and able to work and contribute and grow as a person and to fulfil your duties, whatever that may mean to you. So, yeah, I wanted a few more comments from you about this particular thing that midlife extends way more than most people perceive it
Bernie Borges 35:33
shares with them. So again, we're actually going to give you the simplest definition to midlife that perhaps you ever heard. And here it is. Midlife is adulting it's adulting. So let me let me explain. We, I break life into three phases, youth, midlife, and end of end of life. So youth, generally is up until around age 30. Generally speaking, meaning we're growing, we're maturing, and we're still in a youth phase up until somewhere around age 30. It's a little different for everybody. But generally speaking, then there's a whole span of many decades 30s 40s 50s 60s 70s, even 80s for some people if they're healthy. That is that quote, unquote, midlife season, that's the adulting phase of our life, right? We have more responsibilities during during those phases. Right. So back to end of life. Personally, I'll share with you my father's end of life season began at age 81. When he began, his health began began to decline at age 81. He passed away at age 93. And so for those 12 years, he was in an end of life season, of course, we had no way of knowing when he was going to pass. And I must say, I don't mean to imply, without giving you more detail than you and your listeners, I don't mean to imply that he was lying in a deathbed, I'm just saying that his health began to decline. And for 12 years, he continued to live until the day of his death at age 93. But that whole time was a slow decline. And that's different for everybody. Some people reached that decline. And for whatever unique circumstance they have, it's a rapid decline. And they pass within weeks or months, depending on again, those unique circumstances. But there are especially now there's so much advancement in medical technology, not to mention lifestyles, there are more and more people that are living this longevity lifespan that can go into your 80s and 90s. My father in law at the time of this recording is 93. And I'm very tempted to say he's still in midlife because he's healthy. And not only is he healthy, he is extremely active. He's the president of a community theatre where he lives where he's been the president for 30 years. He's he's been retired from his from work for probably, you know, 2530 years now. But he's there every day Aggie and he's there building sets for, for, for for the theatre. He's running the community theatre, he is the president. He has a staff, nobody's paid. They're all volunteers. And so he cognitively he's 100%. He's 93. So, until he has some kind of a decline in his health, he's not at end of life. And look, he could not wake up from one night sleep because nobody knows that right? That's a God thing. Right? But in terms of his health and his capacity, he's totally there with you and me. Now, he doesn't do it for a paycheck. But he's there every day. I mean, it is his life outside of his family. Right? So it's just this whole concept of midlife is adulting until we reach that end of life season.
Agi Keramidas 39:26
That's great. Thank you very much for this answer. And I want to ask one last question to conclude with all this topic. Based on what we discussed today, so what would you say to the listener that has listened to us right now and realises that you know what I would like to go on more being more fulfilled in my life I realise what these guys are talking about. I kind of knew it, but now I know it even more. Can you give Give us something actionable something to implement to, you know, increase or start moving towards a direction of more fulfilment in one's life.
Bernie Borges 40:10
Sure. So there's two things that I would suggest. One is, and I don't mean to make this sound self serving, but you know, give a listen to the my podcast, the midlife fulfilled podcast, because you hear so many stories of people, yourself included Aggie, where each of those stories is really intended to help you do some self reflection. And that's really, that leads me to point number two, and that is, reflect on your own life, become more self aware of where you're happy, and where you're not happy. Where are you fulfilled? And where are you not fulfilled. And, as I said, earlier, I make the statement at the end of every episode of my podcast, if you're 80%, fulfilled, you're doing great, that alone is liberating for a lot of people, because a lot of people are beating themselves up striving to be 100% fulfilled. And it's just really close to impossible. So if you start with that realisation, that might lift some of the weight off your shoulders, you know, just that alone. But then just make make that distinction between happiness and fulfilment. And then start by this is something that I advise everyone start by the relationships that you have in your life, and focus on those relationships, and understand where the happiness is in those relationships, and even the fulfilment in those relationships. Likewise, look at your career, where where are you fulfilled in that career? Were you unfulfilled in that career? Look at your talents, and compare your talents to your career, I'm assuming that the listener is still working? And how do your talents compare and contrast to where you are in your career? Are you able to maximise or use your talents in a way that is fulfilling to yourself? So a lot of it really just comes down to self reflection. And as I said earlier, and I'll close on this, again, that is, ask yourself, what are my values today, and then work backwards from there, write them down, write down those values, and then work backwards from there. And then just ask yourself, in my relationships, and in my career, am I fulfilled relative to those values? And I love how you said it earlier. Your values are what's most important to me right now. So I'll leave it at that.
Agi Keramidas 42:42
Thank you, these were very useful as actionable points, have learned just three quick fire questions to wrap things up. So be as brief as you want with them. And the first one, well, you know, because you're you listen to the podcast is What does personal development mean to you?
Bernie Borges 43:02
It means constantly striving to grow. So whatever that looks like, but at least striving, striving by listening to a podcast like yours, reading, learning, and again, striving to grow, because we should always be striving to grow.
Agi Keramidas 43:25
Thank you. And if you could go back in time and meet your 18 year old self, what's one piece of advice you would give him?
Bernie Borges 43:35
It wouldn't be one piece of advice, it would be many. But if I had to pick one, it would be. Don't be afraid to fail. Just whatever you want to do, go do it. And don't be afraid to fail. Because you're gonna learn a lot from failure. It's going to make us stronger and better.
Agi Keramidas 43:57
That's a great answer. When it what's the best place for people to find out more about you and connect? And that will of course, I will put the links in the show notes, but share them also during our conversation.
Bernie Borges 44:11
Sure, sure. So I'm very active on LinkedIn. So my name Bernie Borgess is easy to find. In fact, if you Google my name, you'll find that and then my contact information is also on the website for the podcast, and that, of course, is midlife. fulfilled.com
Agi Keramidas 44:29
I want to thank you very much for this conversation. We had venue about fulfilment and midlife and midlife fulfilment. I believe it was very useful, very meaningful, and I'm sure that the listener has got a great deal of value from it. I want to wish you all the very best with you carrying on this podcast that you are so passionate about and I wish you all the best of success and With that, mean, bucked. Any last parting words
Bernie Borges 45:04
are like, I want to thank you for having me. And thank you for the work that you're doing on the personal development mastery podcast. I think it's terrific. It's needed. And what you're doing is terrific and you're making a difference. So thank you for having me and thank you for what you're doing.
Agi Keramidas 45:23
Thank you for joining us today and I'd like to encourage you to listen to my conversation with Bernie on his podcast midlife fulfilled on Episode 66, which was published on the same date that this episode dropped. Not a coincidence. In that episode, Bernie and I discussed the lack of fulfilment many face during midlife and also what action to take right now to start feeling more fulfilled. check out episode 66 of Bernie's midlife fulfilled podcast. You can get it anywhere you listen to podcasts. I have the feeling that if you enjoy personal development mastery podcast, you will enjoy Bernie's midlife fulfilled podcast as well. Until next time, stand out don't fit in!