‘It’s never too late!’ Discover how these women transformed their lives in their 40s

From finding love to kicking career goals, Get It Magazine’s Holly Bartter sits down with four inspirational women to hear how they took the reins of their lives to make big changes in their 40s and beyond. 
Cherie Rivas – Empowerment Mentor & Transformational Therapist 

  1. Can you give us a snapshot of your big life shift? 

When I was 40, I hit rock bottom. I found out I was pregnant at 38 just a couple of weeks after my relationship broke up – I went through my darkest days. I effectively became a single mum and I was at the point of wanting to take my own life, but I knew I couldn’t risk anything happening to my baby. 

At that moment, I decided to get my physical and mental health on track – I wanted to be a happy, healthy and engaged parent. 

I became a personal trainer and studied nutritional medicine, and then I started my own business. I’ve been a single mum for 12 years now, and I’ve continued to learn and grow and develop myself further, and supporting other women to harness the magic of their body, mind and soul. 

 Last year I relocated from Orange NSW to the Gold Coast – my 40s were incredible, and my 50s will be amazing too. 

 2. What’s your advice to women over 40 who are looking to transform their lives? 

 You’re never too old and it’s never too late! So often women accept where they are in life as their only way of ‘being’, simply because they’ve become caught up in their role of wife, partner, mother, career woman or carer of everyone and everything else and they forget who they are. Transformation doesn’t have to be scary or hard, think of it as an adventure.  


Claire Dunkley – Clinical Nurse Consultant in Pain Management 

 1. Tell us about your life transformations – you’ve been through more than one change through your 40s. 

When I was 36 I quit nursing after 16 years and bought a farm – inspired by a permaculture course. I knew I was born to be a healer, and wanted to start helping people at the grassroots starting with their food intake. The next 6 years was a journey of discovery learning how to be a farmer and applying it to my 101 acres – I turned my sandy patch into a thriving pasture through permaculture principles. I loved living off the land but it was very hard work! 

In 2012 I met the girl of my dreams, and we did the long-distance thing, but the farm was demanding and there was always something to be done. My partner Suzie came to me one day and said “I do not want to be a farmer.” This was another massive turning point in my life, I chose Suzie over the farmer life. 

I knew we wanted to be somewhere warm for our next move, so we decided on the Sunny Coast and fell in love with a pet-friendly house in Buderim. One of my friends, Lorraine, introduced me to intuitive medicine and told me I needed to learn this therapy, so I went all in and studied to become a business owner in this space. There were a number of hills to climb going from being a nurse to starting a holistic health clinic, but the thing that kept me going was seeing the positive results in the lives of my clients.  

My clinic flourished and I furthered my education to become an instructor, and my wife and I got married in 2018 and we’re on a mission to share our knowledge with the world. 

2. What inspires you today? 

 I have a two year old and he is my biggest motivator to stay physically fit so that I can keep up with him. I want to be a role model to him that I am living the life I am here to lead, and I want to create a legacy that he will be proud of. ! 


Kylie Attwell – Author & Teacher 
  1. What happened when you turned 40 that prompted you to take stock of your life? 

  Prior to turning 40 I was a shell of a person, trying to keep up appearances and hold it all together. I lived in my head, continually reflecting on the past and worrying about the future. Fast forward 12 years, and my life is no longer a daily struggle. I have a deeper understanding of who I am, what inspires me and how I can contribute to the world. The turning point occurred in my early 40s following a spur-of-the-moment travel adventure to the USA and Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, that could be likened to Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love.  

 I was flying by the seat of my pants, and it resulted in the best six weeks of my life. Returning home was beyond difficult, but I pulled myself together and reflected on what made my holiday so special – I was surrounded by like-minded people and doing things I enjoyed.  

I filled my days with creative activities and listening to and reading inspirational content, and the lectures and books I’d been drawn to were centred around the power of the subconscious mind. It provided me with the information and tools I needed to uncover my life’s calling – I began implementing this information immediately. And that’s when my life started to change dramatically, and quickly, in my early forties. These resources became the foundation for my work as an author, content curator and facilitator for self-transformation and my Build a Life You Love Workbook Series. 

 2. What’s your advice for someone going through similar struggles to what you’ve experienced? 

Changing your experience of life needs to come from within. Most people attempt to transform their life by modifying their external circumstances. A new job, relationship, environment or diet may provide temporary relief, but eventually the unwanted scenarios and circumstances that you are trying to avoid reappear. Lasting, positive change will only occur by doing ‘inner work’. 


Kathy Edwards – Event Management Business Founder 

 1. Can you tell us about your life transformation and how it unfolded? 

 In my early 40s I was at my lowest, no identity, no career, no money and no self-worth. I was over the dating apps. I returned home late one night after trying something new – a “speed dating” event. I sat down and shook my head. “What the hell was that?” I said to myself. It was nothing it promised to be and I had spent the night just walking around trying to find the next person I was to meet.  

I saw an opportunity and by saving a little of each pay, I started the research process to discover what would make other singles over 40 walk away thinking “that was a really great night”. Something that gives them more than just a “night out”. Something that rewards them for being brave and attending an event for the first time and leaves them with a wonderful memory.  

I now organise and run exclusive Singles Over 40 through my business, Steppin’ Out Events. A glam night of great food, music and conversation – connecting singles with hundreds of like-minded people. 

 2. What are some misconceptions about turning 40 that you can “myth bust” for us? 

“You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” would have to be my favourite myth – but there are so many. You won’t make new friendships, you should forget about finding someone special, you are too old to wear sexy clothes or a bikini. In reality, it only gets better and you are hardly past your prime! At 40, you are focused, determined and know what you want. You have evolved, have life experience and an understanding of the ‘no BS’ rule.  




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