Getting older: the good stuff
There are many great things about getting older. Really great things. Put aside your limiting and (most likely) deep-seated beliefs that worship youth and value vanity. Sure, you may have some wrinkles, but you’ve also got perspective, wisdom and intelligence (they’re different!), the experience, the balls and the bank account. As you age, you get to know stuff and as Maya Angelou said, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better you do better.”So, let’s celebrate what it means to get older with a list of 15 things that make it better.
You’re Totally Fine Doing Things Solo.
You name it: Movies, restaurants, museums… you don’t need someone else to accompany you. You enjoy your own company. You know yourself better and you’re just happy to do what you want to do the way you like to do it.
You Can Say Anything. To Anyone.
You say what you think, and it feels great. Uncertainty and insecurities tend to fade over time. You are able to express thoughts and feelings more freely which in turn creates room for honesty and effective communication.
You Don’t Have to Do Your Kids’ Homework.
You love your kids. But you never loved homework. It’s great to have the part of your life behind you. Again.
Time! You’ve Got More of It.
Go to the gym, get your nails done, meet friends in the afternoon. There’s room to enjoy the moments in between.
You Understand What Others Are Going Through.
You’ve been there. You’ve felt that. You see the bigger picture. You’re more in tune with other people’s emotions and what they need in the moment and it makes you a fantastic shoulder to lean (or cry) on.
Being Happy is More Important Than Being Right.
Defending your need to be right can be a waste of time and energy. Step away from the argument! Your happiness is worth more than your exasperation.
Hard Decisions Become Easier.
You’ve got more tools in your toolbox to work with when you encounter problems and you’ve learned not stress yourself out about every little thing.
You Can Say No.
Don’t want to do it? You don’t have to because you just say “no.” Inner turmoil to please others above ourselves fades and it’s fantastic.
Going to Bed Early Is Everything.
The days of partying into the wee hours of the morning and functioning properly the next day are decades behind you. Now the thrill is going to bed early and getting a proper 8 hours of sleep. You know you’re doing something good for yourself and you can’t wait to see how fresh you’ll feel in the morning.
A Sense of Freedom.
You don’t have to prove anything to anyone. You’re not stuck in the idea of who you used to be, who you want to be, or what other people expect you to be.
You’ve Figured Out How to Shop
The key-lime mohair sweater that will look cute with a tan and the loss of five pounds? You don’t buy stuff like that anymore. You like to spend your money on quality pieces that stand the test of time, flatter your figure and fit well right now.
You Can’t Remember Why You Used to Be So Upset.
You begin to realize that the airtime on the stage of your brain is valuable and should be treated like an ultra-precious commodity. Things like grudges and vanity are far less worth your trouble and attention than they used to be.1
You Don’t Have to Wear Uncomfortable Shoes.
“If you want to forget all your troubles, wear too tight shoes.” Which is to say that uncomfortable shoes are distractingly painful. So, we come to a point where we (for the most part) start to choose function over fashion that hurts. And if you DO wear those 6-inch heels out of the house it’s in a car to and from your destination. No walking.
You Feel Less of A Need to Explain Yourself.
You realize that there’s actually no one to answer to, and there’s no right way to live your life. Things are a lot easier and a lot happier when the only person you owe an explanation to is yourself.
You Know Who Your Real Friends Are.
You’ve been around the block and there have been peaks and valleys with friends over the decades. You can look back and reflect. You’ve come to know what you’re made of; you’ve come to know what others are made of and you’ve found your tribe.
We’ve been aging since the day we were born and we’re all in this together and learning as we go. Get pumped about the process. A deeper sense of self, more experience, better habits—just a few of the many incredible things that happen when you shed the skins of uncertainty and grow into new and delightfully-improved versions of yourself.
- Isabelle Allende TED TALK