According to a crone is “an ugly, withered old woman; a hag.” My definition changed though when I read, “ Crones Don't Whine: Concentrated Wisdom for Juicy Women” by Jean Shinoda Bolen. She gives us thirteen ways that to re-look at the word crone.
As I am now fifty, I long to be the crone that she described in her book and I have come up with my own list of ways to become a crone.

1)Be wise. Understand more about the world than what is in your personal world view. You don’t have to have read all the classics or traveled widely(though this never hurt anyone) you just need to be interested in people, what they experience, how they deal with life, and with the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of the world. Be someone that younger women (and men) would feel comfortable coming to with questions about life. Be careful though, the image of a crone is one who is wise but never tries to tell others what to do.

2)Be open. Expand beyond what you have done before. Love rock and roll? Try to find someone to teach you about classical music or vice versa. Stop communicating with that younger part of yourself that tells you that you can’t or you’ll fail. Failure, surviving and starting over is what makes us interesting and real.

3)Be authentic. Books have been written on this subject but for me it is simple. Be the person that you say you are. Do you say that it is important for older people to mentor the younger but aren’t actually doing that? That’s not authentic. Volunteer somewhere or just find a young person who could use a supported (who can’t?). Build a home around yourself that reflects you. Practice spirituality that makes sense to you. Let go of all those old shoulds and just be who you are. Don’t know who that is. It an exciting journey to find out.

4)Be joyful. Joyfulness is not the same as happiness. Happiness depends on circumstances in our life. The kind of thing that we mean when we say, “I’ll be happy when I get that job, end or begin this relationship, lose weight, etc.” Joy is the amazing pleasure we get when we slow down and enjoy the miracles of everyday; a friends smile, children’s laughter, the sweat of a good work out and the taste of a fresh raspberry. Practice being joyful in your life; the best way I have found to do this is to practice gratitude.

5) Practice Gratitude. As Christine Kane says in her music, there should be more to be thankful for than "tivo or Lost or eBay. I keep a gratitude list but anything works that works for you. Prayers of gratitude are also great ways to express your gratitude and often during the process even more things come to mind.

6)Be young. Even though, in my mind, we leave maiden for crone at about age 50, no one wants you to act like an old women. Remember to enjoy the company of your young acting older friends as well as younger ones. I have a couple of twenty-something women in my life who brighten and excite it. Spend time with children or just acting like a child. One of the things I love about getting older is I can do more outrageous things and not care about the reactions of others.

7)Be healthy. Women are notorious about caring for others and not themselves. Get all those health checks that we all hate to get. And make the lifestyle changes you need. I turned 50 just about a month ago and have sense began to do yoga, weights and aerobic exercise. It’s not easy for this body to do but I love how it makes me feel about myself, not just physically but emotionally and spirituality too. Is exercise something you find hard to do? Look back to your childhood. What do you love then? I loved horseback riding, bike riding, swimming and swimming. Guess what, I still do, even though some of those I stopped doing for the baby raising years.

8)De-clutter. By the time you have reached fifty, if you are not someone who regularly purges yourself and your home, the amount of stuff you own is probably amazing. I know that many of us have clothes that date to our dating years, all of the art, report cards and other keepsakes from our children, 25 umbrella that we bought when we bought when we once again got caught out without one and enough paperwork to start our own recycling center. Start, a drawer, or closet at a time to reduce this. Don’t’ know where to start? Check out the hundreds of books, articles and websites on organizing. Splurge on a professional if you can afford it. But what every you do, don’t start collecting organizing books and articles. Take a look at your collections. Do they still bring you joy, will they bring joy to your children when they have to sort through you belongings. And remember to do it for yourself too, purge out old habits and idea that no longer serve you.

9)Be creative. Do you have fun with art, writing, music, and dance? If not why not? For years I believe I was not crafty or artistic, a belief I was carrying from childhood. This last year I let that go and am exploring all these avenues. Have I sold a best selling novel or had my art displayed? No. Am I having a blast trying? Yes!

10)Be Honest. Most of us have be conditioned by society, family, friends, jobs and those crazy voices inside our head to always be polite. Even if polite means not quite telling the truth. Tell the truth. Do you want to do the volunteer work your friend is so excited about but doesn’t
nothing for you? Say so. Does your friend want to know what you think about her beau. Tell her kindly but tell her the truth. And tell yourself, lost importantly be honest with yourself. By being honest with myself I discovered I really don’t like the fancy gold and diamond jewelry I sell but rather the gaudy, fun things I find in the accessory section of department stores or in re-sale stores.

If you practice these ten things, a crone you will become. Oh and my definition of a crone: A wise older woman, who through her own experience, knowledge and truth lives an authentic life and encourages it in others.

Author's Bio: 

Newly fifty, I am on a great adventure discovering myself and the world with new eyes. A published poet, I am now expanding out to articles, short stories and of course the great American novel. I have a background in Human Services- Social Services and Chemical Dependancy Treatment and and have overcome more issues than I care to list here. I am working toward a new life goal of becoming a life coach for woman.