However, these immediate physical sensations and emotions make us forget the benefits of growing older. For one, you have more wisdom and experience compared to your 20s and 30s. Many of us faced life with uncertainty in our younger years, asking our parents, mentors, or older friends for advice on anything and everything. But now it is your kids or younger friends asking you how to go about a difficult situation.
Another is the free time you have compared to your younger working self. There is less time worrying about commuting to work on time or meeting deadlines. And if you do prefer to work as an older person, it is likely because you enjoy your job rather than because you feel you have to take it on.
These are just two of the benefits of older age. Once you start looking at these benefits and blessings, you’ll soon change your mindset about getting older. If you’re not sure where to begin when it comes to shifting your perspective to a more positive one, here are a few tips on loving your older age:
1. Embrace Your Happiness
While you may feel that your happiness peaked in your youth and then decreased in middle age, you might notice that you feel happier entering Senior age. A UK survey found that individuals aged 65 to 80 enjoy life the most.
Why is that? Older adults can focus more on the positive aspects of their lives thanks to the perspectives gained over the years. You are usually more grateful and happy with what you have, especially after everything you have gone through. There is also no pressure to meet a deadline or achieve a milestone like in your younger years.
2. Debunk the Myth That Old Age Guarantees Bad Health
While older age makes us vulnerable to some diseases, it does not mean that illnesses or declining health are inevitable or that your health will automatically be bad as a Senior. Instead, try viewing old age as a chance to incorporate better habits and live your best life, as you can use your newfound free time to boost your physical well-being. Why not engage in simple daily exercises like walking and eat a balanced diet to improve your health.
3. Make a List of ALL Your Skills and Include the Ones You Do Not Get Paid for
Do you feel like you do not have anything to offer as a professional, even after all these years? Take a minute to challenge that belief and assess your current skill set. Then, split your skills and talents into two categories: work-related and creative. Your work-related skills may include effective time management, being a people person, and clear communication. Meanwhile, some examples of creative skills or talents include photography, writing, tarot reading, and gardening, to name a few.
Based on the skills identified, perhaps you can explore the idea of combining and then turning your skills and talents into a business or two. Your work skills will play a role in planning and developing that talent into a sustainable, profit-driven endeavour.
4. Spend Time with Your Old Friends and Seek to Create New Ones
Good relationships are such a crucial aspect of staying happy and content. Research also shows that the stronger your relationships are, the longer you are likely to live. So, always find the time to bond with your loved ones.
But don’t just leave it at that; look for opportunities to create new friends. You can, for example, join a group focused on a particular hobby of yours or sign up for a local organisation that lines up with your passions. You may even discover fresh new perspectives about growing older during your conversations with your loved ones, both the old and new.
5. Unlearn Ageist Attitudes
Many myths around old age, such as health risks and memory loss, tend to prevent older adults from even trying to pursue a meaningful goal or stay in sync with their bodies. You only have one life to live, so find meaning in the years you already had and still have left.
Try not to overthink your meaning or purpose in this universe, either. The source of your joy, passion, inspiration, and motivation can be as simple as being with your loved ones, an activity you enjoy doing, or a cause you believe in.
6. Explore Your Spirituality
A study in the Journal of Religion and Health said that “a growing body of research connects spirituality, with positive late-life functioning.” The results showed that a connection with the transcendent and connectedness with others was how older individuals experienced spirituality associated with positive well-being.
Given this, exploring a spiritual connection can help reframe your mentality about older age. Note that this does not necessarily mean you need to pursue a strictly religious practice. Try going outside your comfort zone and reading about the philosophies of Buddhism, Confucianism, or Taoism, for example. The principles of these philosophies or religions can be part of lives without imposing rituals or requirements onto your lifestyle.
It is hard for older adults to embrace their age because of society’s beliefs and expectations. But with a change in mindset, you can discover that there are many perks to being older. Start embracing the benefits that only come when you hit the age of forty and beyond today.
Why not embrace the benefits of growing old? Get in touch with MRS V today.