A lot of people see aging as a curse. With every birthday comes a greater sense of heaviness, a greater sadness about the imminent arrival of the consequences of old age. No more sports. No more good sex. No more new friendships or hobbies. You might as well invest in your rocking chair now and get comfortable in it.
But that shouldn’t be the case at all!
Don’t doom yourself to decades of boredom and complacency! You can age happily and healthily in a way that opens your life up instead of closing it. This is what writer Carl Honoré tackles in his wonderful new book, B(older): Making the Most of Our Longer Lives. Here are a few tips for cultivating a healthier relationship with aging, inspired by his words.
Be healthy. Be loving.
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Continue to strive to be the person you’ve always wanted to be.
If you’ve always dreamed of being a painter, a surfer, a photographer, it’s not too late to start. It’s never too late. Continue to make conscientious steps towards self-improvement. It doesn’t matter if you’re 65, 85 or 105. Old age becomes a burden when we become complacent. Keep your life invigorating and exciting, and you’ll never have to feel old.
Let go of what isn’t serving you–even when you’re 90.
Just because you are of a certain age doesn’t mean it’s too late to find a new partner, new friends or a new hobby. You’re not stuck with your life choices once you turn 65.
If a friendship or relationship is making you unhappy or isn’t serving you, drop it. Every year is precious, so you should spend your time striving to be truly content rather than feeling stuck with the life you have.
Don’t lie about your age.
Stop boxing yourself in with a number, and definitely don’t lie about it. Once you start lying about your age, you’re giving that number a lot of power. You’re allowing–perhaps even encouraging–yourself to be solely defined by how old you are, not by your personality, accomplishments, or energy.
Stop being so afraid of a silly number. If you think you’re old, you will become old. So keep a vibrant, youthful mindset. We are what we believe.
You’re always learning.
Believe it or not, we actually become more creative as we get older. Sure, maybe you can’t run as fast or recall facts as quickly, but you gain a wider, more open perspective. You have valuable ideas to offer, so allow yourself to become immersed in new skills and hobbies, and be sure to enjoy the company and collaboration of people outside your age group.
Know that, even though you may have slowed down a little, you still have a lot to offer the world.
We need to do away with this fearful obsession we have with aging. Aging is part of life, and it can be one of the most fulfilling times if you learn to fully embrace it. There’s no reason you have to abandon parts of your life that you love–and you definitely don’t need to tolerate things that you don’t. Keep living your life to the fullest. Your age truly is just a number…..