The Sunny Side of the Golden Years
Santa Claus is a testimony of what the sunny side of golden years would be like—full of fun and adventures never experienced before. If having your birthdays is no longer appealing to you, maybe you should start looking at the sunny side of your golden years.
In your golden years, you have become older but wiser—wiser being a process of becoming more of what you have been.
In your golden year, you have become more confident due to the benefits of accumulated life experiences. You should not be experiencing any identify crisis because by now you know who you are and what you want out of your life. In addition, life has taught you not to take any rejection by anyone as personal; you have come to believe that the way people treat you is no more than a reflection of their own inadequacy and insecurity.
In your golden years, you may have by now become more proactive, instead of procrastinating, because you are fully aware that your clock is ticking. An increasing awareness of how precious time is and a desire to utilize it more effectively is self-motivation not to procrastinate any more.
In your golden years, you have become more patient and less impulsive; maybe by now you have more time to yourself. With more tolerance and less impulse, you have become more rational in your thinking as well as in your behavior.
In your golden years, after decades of pushing, striving, and struggling, you have finally cooled down and attained inner tranquility without the need to excel or to shine any more.
In your golden years, you have grown mellow. Instead of looking only at the bigger picture, you have begun to shift your focus on the little fine things in life that now afford you pleasure and satisfaction of a different kind, rather than on your quest or pursuit for success in your younger years. You have learned that it is better to take things in stride, especially the bigger ones, such as life challenges. Most importantly, you have acquired the wisdom of having no need for you to be right all the time, let alone championing your beliefs and standpoints.
In your golden years, you have more free time to develop a network of both old and new friends. Getting involved not on a career level often broadens your horizon and extends your perceptions of life.
In your golden years, you may have become more spiritual, not necessarily being connected to a specific belief system or religion; your inner spirit is simply awakened to the people and the world around you.
In your golden years, you have learned to accept the unalterable; this acceptance teaches you to live in the now, as well as to appreciate what you still have, not what you are going to lose.
To sum up, look at your golden years as your rewards and blessings, and perceive yourself as desirable and deserving.
Positive Facts about Aging
If you are over 65, you belong to the 10 percent of the
population heading towards longevity. If you are one of them, continue to forge
ahead with your healthy lifestyle to remain younger and healthier for longer! U.S.
Only 5 percent of individuals over 65 are confined to an institution. Being healthier for longer assures you will not be one of them!
About 95 percent of individuals over 65 are still healthy without chronic health problems. If you are one of them, good for you! Continue your healthy lifestyle!
Cognitive function does not decline dramatically with age. The majority of seniors are still capable of learning new skills and acquiring new information. In general, your ability to learn new things is affected not so much by your age as by your desire to learn them. Keep up with your desire, and don’t lag behind the world of information and technology! This will keep you mentally fit for longer.
Your physical strength is maintained from your biological maturity until around age 60. But physical strength and body mass are more related to disease and health than to your number of years. Continue to exercise to maintain your muscles. Use it or lose it! Be physically active and mobile to keep you younger for longer. Also, keep your good posture, which is important not only in preventing falls and improving muscular strength, but also in maintaining your youthful image and physique.
A Life of Leisure
Santa Claus is having a life of leisure: traveling and giving presents. The golden years often become a life of leisure for many seniors: traveling and playing golf. Your leisure is what you like to do because you want to do it, you look forward to doing it, you feel good about doing it, and you simply enjoy doing it.
But your life is more than just a life of leisure. Your leisure has to satisfy your inner soul or spirit as well—it needs to give you a sense of satisfaction and achievement. Man does not live by bread alone, nor does he thrive on only personal enjoyment. Your life has to be meaningful and rewarding, such that it provides you with an incentive to go on even against all odds, to make the most and the best of what has been given to you, or maybe what is left of you. It is this incentive that makes your golden years meaningful and rewarding. Always make your life purposeful, irrespective of the different phases in you life, and savor the rewards of all your accomplishments, no matter how insignificant they may be. If you are about to retire or have already retired, do not make your retirement only a perpetual holiday. Do something about your golden years!
Myths and Truths about Aging
You inevitably feel much older as you advance in years. Quite the contrary, according to a 2009 Pew Research survey, many seniors feel they are as many as 10 to19 years younger, not older, than their chronological age.
Dementia is inevitable in life. But dementia is only one of the many symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. If you don’t have the disease, you may only have senior moments, which are just momentary memory lapses. Use it or lose it. If you regularly use and exercise your brain, you will have fewer senior moments. Of course, if you do have the Alzheimer’s disease, then it is something else.
You can no longer exercise your body and mind in your 50s, 60s, and beyond. Nothing is further from the truth than this. It is never too late to exercise, despite your aches and pains. As a matter of fact, immobility only aggravates muscle weakness and inflexibility, and thus creating a vicious circle of inactivity and pain.
If you think you are too old to give up your nicotine, think again! Research studies have indicated that most seniors are able to give up their lifelong habit of smoking in their golden years.
You can never teach an old dog new tricks. Scientists have found that the cognitive reserve in the human brain enables learning new things in the latter half of life. Whether you wish to continue to empower yourself with new knowledge in your golden years is your personal choice, and it has little to do with your mind power or your age.
Women in senior years are more likely to develop depression than men. According to National Women’s Health Resources, women in their golden years become more adventurous and more ready to look for new opportunities in life than men do. It is also a myth that depression will impair an aging body and mind. The truth of the matter is that depression is a treatable medical condition. Don’t stigmatize yourself!
Western cultures perpetuate the perception and the negative stereotypes of the elderly. Do not buy into all the negative and erroneous beliefs about growing old. If you can only remove all your negative stereotypes and myths of aging, you are well on the way to the sunny side of your golden years.
Copyright© by Stephen Lau