The idea of aging with grace has multiple definitions. It’s different for everyone: presence, elegance, refinement, and ease are a few qualities associated with aging. To achieve a state of grace is to achieve a healthy, well-balanced life full of joy and respect.
Sounds simple, yet, aging gracefully is a learning process, or a re-learning process if you have a tendency to trade your age for a fantasy of youth. It’s only human to look outside yourself and be one of the flock who chase our social and cultural proclivities.
But instead of looking outside yourself and identifying with every cultural norm, a more powerful and mindful path is through self-acceptance, patience and a willingness to better understand who you are and what you want from your life.
There is a persistent problem in our culture that works against your desire to achieve a state of happiness and contentment. Most people fail to look inside themselves for answers to their deepest issues.
Distractions are everywhere, and they get in the way of achieving a well-balanced life. You keep playing the same note every day – a one note samba – and as a result, imagination, creativity and optimism deteriorate and you flat-line.
The key to a fulfilling life is to avoid being stuck in quicksand. And the key to getting out of quicksand is to develop a sense of curiosity for interests and ideas that add value to your life.
In a profound sense, curiosity builds independence, which empowers you to open yourself up to expanding possibilities and opportunities. And remember, there are no limits or labels as you expand your life.
Find a new passion, volunteer where your heart leads you, and explore yoga and other forms of physical exercise. Practice meditation and talk to people who inspire you. Start learning again. Build a fully independent, self-sufficient life from the inside out.
As you age, you might find that you are resistant to explore new ways of learning, new activities to engage in, or new people to meet. In effect, you are limiting yourself with pre-conceived behavior patterns, failing to explore the challenges of a potentially awesome life.
You will undoubtedly subscribe to the phrases, “I can’t,” “It’s not me,” “I’m not good enough,” “It’s not my thing, Suzie does it better.”
These attitudes are psychological defense mechanisms that cause you to reject, deny or otherwise oppose action. This attitude of resistance is a toxic force within you, leading to dead ends. Changing the resistant mindset is crucial to bringing joy, satisfaction and passion to your life.
Many of you have close friends who frequently repeat their same old negative story to you. You’ve heard it so many times that you are tired of hearing it.
This situation has happened to me several times in my life, and my mantra to them is to remind the person that it happened in the past and to leave the story where it belongs – in the past. I further suggest to re-imagine your story and wear the life you are living now. Thanks, Pat Benatar.
Changing your story brings you more energy while expanding your imagination in the present, allowing you to take some risks, make glorious mistakes and plenty leaps of faith.
There are no limits on your life’s journey, unless you insist on living in the past. Be mindful of the present and the gifts, talents and skills you possess, and change your story with grace.
What if you suddenly forgot your age? What age would you think you are? How would you behave if that were truly your age?
It might be fun to imagine this situation because you could come up with awesome alternatives to aging. Satchel Paige, a baseball player for the Cleveland Indians, said in 1948: “Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” He never saw his birth certificate.
One year in my 60s, I thought I was one year younger than I was, and it made me very happy until I realized that age is an attitude and not chronology.
The best experience you can have is to live the life you want without fear and regret, and above all, with purpose and resilience to make choices that reflect your values.
Aging with grace in your 60s is full of challenges and joys. There is so much going on in your environment and in your life that it’s sometimes easy to overlook what is directly in front of you.
So, make your choices mindfully, give daily gratitude, and deepen your awareness of all that surrounds you by staying present, healthy and wise.
How are you staying healthy, wealthy and wise in your 60s? Are you aging with grace or do you prefer to use a different word to describes your attitude to getting older? Let’s have a chat!
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