These changes in years and decades are a profound part of our psyche and mythology, and therefore provide an opportunity to shift things around a bit. Remember to let time work for you. It may take some days or weeks to experience the effects of changes. The helpful theme right now seems to be self-acceptance. Ambition, drive, motivation are all great, but some levels of expectation can do more harm than good. Lately we are bombarded with books, lectures, talk shows, friends, and experts all talking about perfect health, relationships, lifestyle, and so on. I think this phenomenon is what happens when what used to be fringe becomes mainstream and the pendulum over swings. It’s as if with all the information available now, there is no excuse for not being as fit as an elite athlete, or as happy as an enlightened guru, or as green as Al Gore’s closest friends.
Discipline is great, and proven to improve quality of life, but self-punishment is problematic. It’s a fine line, and not a fixed line either. Cycles are a part of Nature, and so are we, so your fine-line is wiggling around. When you fall to either side of it, do you giggle and eventually get back on? That would be self-acceptance. Try it; go find something narrow and curvy to walk or dance across, set your goal to do it gracefully, and see if you laugh when you fail once, twice, three times. Watch children do it. Now recognize those lines in your life.