Anxious About Getting Older? Here’s How to Get Back on Track
I smiled when I read the following quote by David Bowie: “Aging is an extraordinary process where you become the person you always should have been.”
I’ve been mindful of this mantra every day of my life since the age of 50.
We all know that age is more about attitude than a number. We also understand that your attitude influences your thought process and your behavior.
In other words, if you feel energetic and young, your age won’t matter. But, if you are holding on to self-defeating thoughts about what you are going to do with the rest of your life, you will be held back. In fact, life won’t be any fun at all.
Aren’t you jazzed about the idea that you can choose your own destiny and live a joyful, passionate and healthy life, no matter your age? I am!
Why Are Some People Anxious and Depressed About Aging?
There is nothing to fear about aging if you think about it as “an extraordinary process where you become the person you always should have been.” Thanks, Mr. Bowie.
The first way to get rid of our anxieties about aging is to celebrate your age with a positive and healthy attitude. This will help you to take on the challenges of growing older.
If you are mindful about the aging process, you will get the life you want and deserve.
Unfortunately, there are people who live in a constant state of worry about their money, job and relationships. These people find it far too easy to escape into a mindless mental state. In reality, these are simply excuses that keep you from getting to the top of your game.
What’s holding you back from being the person you always should have been?
Stephen Pressfield, in his book, The War of Art, calls resistance “The most toxic force on the planet; the root of more unhappiness than poverty, disease, and erectile dysfunction; it crushes our spirit and makes us less than we were born to be.”
Resistance offers a one-way path to boredom because it allows us to make endless excuses not to do what we really want to do. It takes away our energy, stifles our ingenuity and obliterates our creativity. Resistance is a thousand pound elephant that holds you back every day of your life.
The antidote to resistance is to get up every morning with an intention to do the most important thing in your life – something that brings joy and satisfaction and positive energy. You want focus on things that raise your temperature and fulfill your needs.
Make no mistake: resistance comes for you every day. So, be vigilant, aware and clear about exactly what you want to do. This is the only way that you can pursue your passions and your dreams and become the person you were meant to be.
There is a myth floating around in the universe that you become invisible as you age. Those who feel badly about aging perpetuate this myth and spread their negativity to others.
These same people sit mindlessly in front of the television and like to throw themselves pity parties. Trust me – that’s not the kind of party you want to attend!
Another negative myth about aging is that you have reduced potential. Ridiculous! Ok, maybe you have to ask your children or grandchildren how to do something on the computer, but, at least, you have the brainpower to recognize what you don’t understand. Hooray for you!
Maybe you are even planning a trek up Kilimanjaro. Just watch me!
Telling yourself negative stories about how crippling the aging process is will never get you out to a tennis lesson, anthropology class or 20-mile bike ride. Neither will worrying about your parents spent the last decades of their lives. Aging is an accomplishment to be cherished and celebrated.
Here are a few simple suggestions.
- Embrace kissing at night
- Spend 5 more minutes on the dance floor
- Get lost in the moment
- Be kind to self and others
- Be willing to let go of the things that don’t add value to your life
- Spend more time being and not doing
On her 70th birthday, Maya Angelou said: “I’ve learned that making a living is not the same thing as making a life.”
How much value are you placing on living creativity? This is one of the only ways to add meaning and context to your life.
Are you anxious about getting older? What do you do to bring creativity and happiness into your life? Please join the conversation.