I’m writing this post because today, I’m three-quarters through my twenties (27.5)! So I felt it would be appropriate to write a post on getting older.
Two years ago, it dawned on me that aging is not a unique feature of old people, and I spent much of the following year feeling terrified of getting older. The most irrelevant things would trigger my fears. One day, I found out that 27 is the oldest you can be to try out for American Idol, and for a second I panicked that I was running out of time to try out. Then, I remembered I’ve never had any interest in public singing, much less being on the show.
Age-related crises can happen at any stage in life. What connotations do you attach to getting old?
Personally, I was afraid of spending the majority of my life in a cubicle, and as a result, becoming so boring that I wouldn’t have anything to talk about the rest of the time. I was afraid of mom jeans and high socks. I saw Donnatella Versace’s failed attempts to dodge facial changes through plastic surgery, and… well, it speaks for itself.
Looking at my fears, I had the unwritten script that life degenerates with time and won’t be fun anymore. We see so many examples of this all around. But the reality of this is that most of the problems that tend to accompany getting older don’t really have much to do with age, but have more to do with compounded failure to manage various aspects of our lives (such as consistently neglecting our bodies).
Do you have any of these fears or beliefs? Irrespective of how old you are, here are some ways to approach time and reframe getting older so you never experience an age-related crisis.
- Don’t use your age as an excuse for anything. You didn’t run out of time. The oldest people on record are currently 116. Granted, not everyone lives this long, but if you take care of yourself, chances are you’ll have a lot of time to do many amazing things.
- You don’t need to live in the past. The world is just as breathtaking now.
- Prioritize fun and exploration. The fact that we have the capacity to be bored is actually really astonishing, if you think about it. If you feel you’re too busy, just step outside at night, look up, and forget about your life for a moment- you’ll be filled with wonder.
- Live for your own fulfillment. As you get older, it becomes easier to replace validation from others with true self-love. How do you want to feel? Live that way.
- You’re always in control of your life, no matter what it feels like. As kids, we’re told exactly what to do all the time, but we still feel free. As adults, we have the choice to live as we please, but most people feel trapped by some aspect of their life. If something doesn’t feel right to you, then you can and should change it.
- As you get older, you have greater ability to break free from old patterns. Many people like to say that they’re set in their ways. But in actuality, the more time you have under your belt, the more perspective you can have. Invest some time in regular self-reflection, and you will teach yourself so much.
- Take care of your gut. And the rest of your body. But it starts with the gut. If you do that, you’ll live in a great body for a long time.
- Never stop growing. If you commit to this, aging becomes irrelevant. Your life will always be exciting. J
I love your comments! If you have thoughts to share about this or anything else, please feel free to respond or comment on the blog.