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#61: Cathy Payne, teaches us to reinvent ourselves every 10 years: Special education teacher to ...

Cathy is an inspiration for those of you who love the idea of reinventing yourself. She's not afraid to try new things and learn as she goes. Age is no excuse for this amazing 68-year-old!


  1. Pay attention to your favorite childhood activities. Cathy loved being outside, she loved the idea of being a veterinarian and always had pets. She also felt drawn towards the deaf and blind and people with disabilities. These interests appeared later in life when she got a degree in special education and later bought a farm.

  2. Watch for physical manifestations of stress. Cathy got hives during one of the more stressful times of her life.

  3. When you look at things differently, things change. Cathy started imagining her life differently after discovering new spiritual teachers who taught her things like positive affirmations.

  4. Notice when you're being held back and asked to play small. Cathy's principal wasn't in favor of her teaching methods for special needs kids because they went against the status quo and might result in decreased funding. Not everyone will support your growth.

  5. Conflict in your life might not be a bad thing. It can help you pivot in a new direction like when Cathy left her job and the unsupportive principal.

  6. When you have something you're passionate about, get curious. Cathy started a podcast talking to local farmers because she was interested in healthy local food.

  7. Identify what makes you mad or what gets you fired up. For Cathy, it was seeing what the school lunchrooms served, and seeing how this affected kids. She wanted to put healthy food into her body and educate others about the benefits of eating great food.

  8. Let yourself daydream by asking "Wouldn't it be nice if______________?" Then ask yourself "Why not"? This is what happened to Cathy and her husband when they went to the farm to table dinner.

  9. Remember, no one is an expert when they start. You can research anything online for free and start asking questions. Ask questions, join groups. Delegate whatever it is you don't enjoy or things that require skills you don't have (like shearing sheep).

  10. Once you have a vision, throw it out there, give voice to it. Cathy told people she was writing a book. People showed up, giving her information, transcribing for her, and offering stories and interviews about her book topic.

  11. After a few years on the farm, Cathy's body was telling her again that it was too much. Burnout can happen even when it feels like your situation is idyllic.

  12. Pay attention when you feel a little nudge, even if it's a tiny nudge like taking a different route to work.

  13. We're always evolving, it's never too late. If it's your passion, follow it.



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