50+ and Thriving!
Let’s face it — The world values youth! And as we age, we fight the process. We see that in so many ways.
Physically we fight it – we buy creams to reduce wrinkles, consider surgical interventions to lift things up, and battle the belly that is acquired through natural aging process. We look in the mirror and just sigh. Companies are making millions from the aging population who are seeking solutions to reverse or stop time.
We are challenged by the limits our bodies put on us. Activities that used to come easy now take more time, generate more frustration and leave us feeling disappointed in our own abilities. The fact that we might not be able to lift as much weight, run as long (if at all) or take that hill results in self-disappointment. Not to mention the aches, pains, rips and tears that reinforces our body’s limitations.
Our culture also reminds us which direction we are moving. Technology and new gadgets humble us as we strive to keep up and learn from our frustrated children who try to teach us. In the workplace we are pushed aside by the up-and-comers who get the attention of the organization’s energy. And in the media, Youth is KING.
But here is the deal……As we move further away from the fountain of youth — WE HAVE A LOT TO OFFER.
No matter how old you are remember these 6 pearls of wisdom:
Embrace your wrinkles – Each line carries experience. Wrinkles are a physical way to remind us of who we are. You’ve had a journey that no one else has had. Embrace your life and the travels that have got you here. Even if every step hasn’t been great….you have been given the gift of experience and this can be a tremendous value to others. Use your “wrinkles” to impart wisdom. You have earned them. Look in the mirror and be proud!
Chase your dreams – You are never too old to pursue your dreams. Ray Kroc was over 50 when he bought the first McDonalds, Vera Wang didn’t decide to be a dress designer until after 40. Grandma Moses, whose work hangs in the Museum of Modern Art in New York didn’t start painting until the age of 76. Ronald Reagan entered politics at 55 and John Glen went to space at 77 years of age. Great things can happen no matter how old you are. Whether it’s starting a business, pursuing a dream or tackling a goal from your bucket list — Do it. We only have one life to live. Live it well.
Treasure friendships – Be grateful for the people that have been put in your path. Honor those people who have made you who you are today. Think of the value they have provided to your life. Remember the saying: “You can’t make old friends” so don’t loose touch. Rekindle relationships and make sure to pass on the important stories. Don’t stop making new friends. We are meant for connections. You never know who will enter your life, when and for what reason. And remember no age boundaries – I have met the most interesting people from age 10 – 100. Everyone has something to offer. Stay open and keep making new connections.
Never stop learning – Take a class, learn a new skill, change your job, volunteer with a cause, start a new hobby – – you are never too old to keep learning. We are meant to grow throughout our entire life. Sure, it may not come as fast, but so what? We got time. Be open to learning and keep your mind moving.
Have fun – Be who you are – you have earned that too! Do the things you truly like to do and that give you energy. Don’t worry about impressing people – that is for the 20 year olds! This is your time. Embrace the need for more sleep, it recharges you to have fun later! Enjoy friends and family, take vacations or spend quiet time doing something you love. Laugh, smile and take it all in. Have FUN, your way.
Be grateful for your Journey
Through the ups and downs, twists and turns and unexpected detours, we have experienced a lot. But there is a journey yet ahead. Pay close attention and make ever moment matter. Live humbly and with a grateful heart. Look back with gratitude and look forward with hope. Treat your road as a wonderful unique adventure intended just for you. Remember to enjoy the ride and keep in mind — the best may be yet to come!