As You Age—Stay Young. Here’s How.

By on October 20, 2018
Growing

How we view growing old impacts how we age. Researchers report that older adults with a positive view of aging recover from injury and illness faster, drive more safely, eat better, and show stronger brain function, to name only a few benefits. Rejecting negative stereotypes and forming positive views of aging can add 7.5 years to our lives.

Blogger Kathy Gottberg offers how to’s to squash negative stereotypes and develop positive ones, including: “refuse to blame some of your experiences on your age” and “make a habit of thinking of the benefits of your advancing age.” 

As I grow older, I notice particular self-critiques:

  • Why didn’t I retire earlier? I could have started my writing career five years ago. I’d be so much further along by now.
  • I forgot her name. Is this the first sign of dementia?
  • Why haven’t I mastered my weight by now?
  • Will this relationship ever get better? Why can’t I get it right?

However, I recently discovered a tool that is revolutionizing my aging process. The tool? A word:

Student. 

Even as an older adult, I’m a student. 

I’m still learning how to be healthier. I incorporate into my daily routines new studies published weekly with recommendations on how to eat and exercise. When I gain a pound and self-loathing rises up, I remind myself: “I’m still learning.”

I’m a student of the craft of writing. Each day I learn new techniques, vocabulary, and resources to hone my passion of writing. I read NYT best sellers and collect well-written online articles. Do you write? I’d love to learn from you.

My cousin sent me an email recently recounting all the ways I failed her.  Stunned, all I could do was reply, “ I’m sorry.” However, the hurt and bewilderment stayed in my thoughts until I remembered, I’m a student. I’m still learning how to be a good friend, family member, colleague, exercise class coed, church-goer, person. I erase self-rejection, which never helps, with the truth—I’m a student. Healthy relationships present a huge learning curve for me. Can you relate? I hope to pursue growing in this arena until my final day. 

Seeing myself as a student opens me up to new horizons—trails to hike, classes to take, books to read, hairstyles to try, and people to meet. 

I can’t wait to show my friend—some thirty years younger than I—a quaint mountain town I discovered. She’s driving into town this weekend and I’ll tour guide us to its three-block downtown. Together we’ll explore the shops and cafes and then choose one for lunch. I love uncovering historical, artsy venues.

I’m still discovering many benefits to growing older. But as I age, the one that keeps me young, is the opportunity and the privilege to continue learning.

My goal is to be a student my whole life long. How about you?

Gloria Rose is a writer and coach to women seeking to pursue their calling. For similar content, go to her website.

 

About lb50

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

As You Age—Stay Young. Here’s How.