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Have You Turned into a Lazy Old Lady?

Is it activity that keeps us young, or is it something else? Personally, I don’t believe it’s physical activity that keeps us young. There are some days when it can make us feel much older. You know what I mean; those days when everything aches, especially your knees!

But I do believe, most strongly, that keeping our brains active and running on all cylinders, keeps us away from the stereotype of the lazy old lady.

We All Know the Power of the Mind

We can create whatever we choose by changing the way we think, our mindset, our language and our attitude.

We can change the way we speak about others and ourselves. In fact, being careful with our language when we talk about ourselves is crucial.

Listen to what you say about yourself and when you recognise it as negative, start reframing.


If you constantly use the “I’m not enough” talk… I’m too fat, I’m too old, I’m not smart, I had no education, I don’t look as good as all my friends… STOP. This is your low self-esteem talking and you need to pull it up by the bootstraps.

Take a look at my Stocktake page which provides a flow chart on where to begin and where to go.

If We Are Intent on Becoming Old, That’s What Will Happen!

It’s a process which involves:

  • Closing your mind
  • Acceptance of how things are
  • Dressing like your own granny
  • Refusing to look at anything new
  • Refusing to admit that this is not what you had in mind for ageing

Change in our mental ability is expected and accepted as we age, but it doesn’t necessarily mean deterioration.

Take Control of Your Mind, Not Just Your Body

If you exercise regularly, be it dancing, walking, weightlifting, running marathons, whatever, well done of you. Keeping physically active helps your brain to keep ticking over.

I think we all know that a healthy body is a healthy mind, and we must all mentally stimulate ourselves to stay sharp and alert.

There are plenty of things you can find to do here on Sixty and Me. Plus a few other things which you may not have added to your repertoire. Yet.

How about trying one or more of these?

  • Enjoy a daily puzzle or crossword. Did you know there are six common types of crosswords?
  • Choose mental arithmetic rather than using the calculator. Use your fingers if needed.
  • Read more. Go to the library and become friends with the Librarian or join an online (or local, pandemic permitting) book club. Or even start a book club with your circle of friends!
  • Stretch your mind further with bridge or chess or computer games. Lumosity is a favourite!
  • Socialise – join a local choir or gardening club.
  • Start a course, or a day, evening or online class.
  • Go out more, especially to theatres and galleries.
  • Go back to work or start a new job.
  • Volunteer
  • Exercise for half an hour at least three times a week or take up speed walking. With weights!

Several years ago, I wrote a book called 25 Ways to a Happier, Healthier You and everything within the book is not only a plus for your physical health but is geared to expanding your mind.

One of the effects of the pandemic has been a general lack of socialisation; especially for the elderly. But we all know that social contact helps memory and concentration, so new people or even the old people, are good to be around.

Of course, much of this is tricksy if you’re still isolated. But it can be done. So determine that you will take control of your mind and never become a lazy old lady.

Have you turned into a lazy old lady? Why do you think that is? What can you do to move away from that stereotype? Please join the conversation!

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The Author

Penelope Jane Whiteley is the self-appointed Queen of Aging Disgracefully. A writer, international speaker, clothes designer, stylist and traveller, she helps other women to live their lives on their own terms. Her courses include “Lose 10 pounds in 10 minutes,” “The Reboot,” “Just Write the Damn Book.” Find her on, Twitter, and Facebook.

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