I didn’t get old on purpose, it just happened. If you’re lucky, it could happen to you. – Andy Ronney
Some might think there is no joy in ageing but I beg to differ.
Our age is only a chronical indication of how many years we’ve been on Earth.
I believe it’s how young at heart you are that counts and of course how healthy you are on the inside.
Now that I’m a Sexagenarian, which is someone in their 60’s (that name seems ironic and a bit cruel to me as not many people I know in their 60s are getting much, if any sex…but I digress), it’s hard not to notice the dents and hail damage accumulating on my chassis and my mind not being as sharp on the recall as it used to be.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not easy for any of us to look in the mirror and watch ourselves ageing.
A friend of mine, who’s my age, recently said that the things he could do all night when he was younger can now take him all night to do.
I’m grateful to be in very good health and can’t image how difficult it would be to battle a chronic illness while ageing. Mind you I sometimes wonder what age it was when I started to notice the grunting noises I make involuntarily whenever I’d bend down or move the wrong way or struggle to get up out of a seat.
Old age ain’t no place for sissies – Bette Davis award-winning US actor
There never seems to be enough hours in each day for me to achieve everything I want to do so I’ve often dreamt of immortality but despite all the stem cell and genetic research currently underway that could feasibly double the human lifespan and make ageing just another curable disease, I doubt that will ever happen in my lifetime and probably not yours either.
Therefore, we need to accept and embrace ageing and focus on the positive side;
Ageing seems to be the only available way to live a long life.
– Kitty O’Neill Collins
- Knowing you’ve made it.
Celebrate that you’ve made it to old age. I’d be horrified to know how often my innate sense of stupidity has come close to causing my demise.
Growing old is compulsory – growing up is optional. – Bob Monkhouse
- Happier as we age.
According to new research grey hair, deepening expression lines (I refuse to call them wrinkles) and a brighter outlook on life all go together.
Dr. Stacy Wood, a neuropsychologist and associate professor at Scripps College in Claremont, California has been working for some time with Michael Kisley, a neuroscientist at the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs and their studies reveal changes to our brain function as we grow older may bring us an extra dose of joy and their results have found older adults as a group, seem happier.
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- A seat on the bus
There is a level of respect that you get when you age. Ever since I stopped colouring my hair and embraced its natural silver grey colour, I always get offered seats on the bus and the train. I don’t always take them but I do thank them profusely for offering as I feel good manners should always be rewarded.
You know you’re getting old when the candles cost more than the cake. – This quote is from Bob Hope US comedian & TV host who lived until he was 100 years and 2 months old
- Power of Positive Thinking
Maturity brings with it a healthy caution and we’re less likely to take foolish risks.
‘Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter’ — Mark Twain.
We can’t stop the ageing process but a positive approach is vital for living younger and can make the journey a lot more pleasant.
Besides ageing is definitely better than the alternative!
Remember our thoughts become our words and then our actions, these actions turn into our habits and establish our values and ultimately our destiny.
- Staying Relevant
Age to me means nothing. I can’t get old; I’m working. I was old when I was twenty-one and out of work. As long as you’re working, you stay young. When I’m in front of an audience, all that love and vitality sweeps over me and I forget my age. – George Burns US Comedian who also lived until he was 100 and two months.
Even if you’re not in the workforce anymore it’s important to stay relevant. With age comes wisdom and a great way to stay relevant is mentoring and helping others around you when they call on your advice and guidance.
- Keeping Up with Technology
Early 20th century British statesman Joseph Chamberlain had some really great quotes but I can’t agree with him when he said, “You cannot teach old dogs new tricks.”
Hilde was my mother’s oldest and dearest friend, they met on the train going from Germany to Italy to board a converted American tanker to come to Australia as refugees after World War II. Hilde passed away about 5 years ago, aged 87 & a half. At the tender age of 80 she took herself off to the local computer shop and patiently took computer lessons and before long she was embracing emails and the internet.
As she became less mobile, her computer became a greater source of entertainment and the world opened up for her again without her having to leave her apartment. Emailing kept her in touch with many of her friends and their families around the globe and she didn’t feel isolated or lonely despite living alone and becoming more and more house bound.
What really blew Hilde away and made her shed tears of joy was when I showed her the aerial and street views on Google Earth of the home she grew up in as a child and her entire home town of Mannheim, Germany. Images she hadn’t seen for many decades.
Ageing is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength.
– Betty Friedan
- Health & Fitness
Looking after our health is paramount if we don’t want to age disgracefully.
I want to die young at a ripe old age. – Ashley Montagu
As we age it becomes more about eating for a healthy heart rather than fitting into a slinky dress, although our waist circumference is widely accepted as an indicator of the potential risk of developing chronic diseases such as heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure.
According to National Health and Medical Research Council guidelines, a waist measurement of 94 cm or more (for men) or 80 cm or more (for women) is a gauge of increased risk.
A low-carb, healthy fat diet is optimum food fuel to help keep our bodies running smoothly as we age. I certainly don’t recommend this diet;
The cardiologist’s diet: If it tastes good spit it out. – Anonymous
Network Ten news anchor Sandra Sully shared with me one the most profound statements she’d heard from her Naturopath, who said, “If you don’t take care of your body, where will you live?”
Of course there is no guarantee that living a healthy lifestyle will lengthen the years you spend on Earth but it will certainly improve the quality of them.
At this stage in my life I can’t imagine ever not working but retirement is certainly one of the positive sides of ageing. I know so many older friends who have retired and could never have imagined how fabulous it would turn out to be.
This is the time when you can finally focus more time on yourself and enjoy your hobbies and interests and you can often have a larger disposable income when you’re older to achieve it.
- No Periods
I’m sure this needs no explanation, especially to any woman who still gets hers…its bliss!
If you’ve done the hard slog and raised children (and more power to you) then I believe grandchildren are your reward.
Your children are probably never going to raise your grandchildren the way you raised your children and no matter what you do, it more than likely won’t be the way your children want it done anyway so just have fun with them.
As a grandparent it’s all care and no responsibility. You can spoil them rotten and then give them back (which immediately brings an old adage to my wicked mind; revenge is a dish best serve cold).
No matter how old a mother is, she watches her middle-aged children for signs of improvement – Florida Scott-Maxwell
Growing old, that is easy…staying old, now that is hard!
- Turn back the clock
A woman has the age she deserves. – Coco Chanel
There’s plenty of 21st Century science and technology that constantly goes into the plethora of lotions and potions and procedures available today that can visibly help turn back the hands of time and make you feel and look younger. There’s no doubt that if you feel good you look good and if you look good you feel good.
Stress can have an extreme impact on ageing and our overall health and wellbeing, both mentally & physically, so reducing our stress levels as we age should be a priority for us all.
Here’s a link to the recent article I wrote with tips about managing stress;
Age puzzles me. I thought it was a quiet time. My seventies were interesting and fairly serene, but my eighties are passionate. I grow more intense as I age. – Florida Scott-Maxwell
Wishing you a long life filled with good health and happiness today and always,
Cheers x susie
Author, TV & Radio Broadcaster