How old are you now?
Did you ever think that getting older would be your problem, sooner or later? Probably yes. And probably when you began to see a 40 or a 50 in the number of your years. Or even before, with 10 or 15, when you saw your 35 year old aunt as old and you decided never to get as old as her.
Actually, you begin to get older right after birth, day by day, and the word “old” is the most relative word you can imagine. It actually doesn’t say anything concrete, as everybody understands something different when using it. And even in different circumstances it can mean different time spans, from 1 day to 100 years. So why should this word ever become a problem for you? Why should you fear “getting old” when you are just “getting older”.
Why getting older is not a bad thing
Remember, when you were a child you ALWAYS wanted to be older. You wanted to be a grown up because you thought that REAL LIFE would begin then. But from a certain age onward you stopped wanting to get older and you even began to fear that you, you too!, could get old. You might have forgotten it for a while, while you were so busy constructing your adult life. Then the thirties birthdays hit and you told yourself “after all, I am still YOUNG”. Then, on your 40th birthday you realized that you too, in fact, were getting older, like everybody else.
Will this be us?
And here your problem with GETTING OLDER might have begun to show up more seriously as “Ageing”. Ways of thinking creep in, like: “I can STILL do xyz“or “I won’t be able to….” and you will begin to read the stories about illnesses in old age, poverty, handicaps, whatever. Boom! You are set up for considering getting older as a problem which now has become YOUR problem.
Social conditioning and reality
Most of our beliefs about old age depend on what our society thinks about old people which is dependent on the value system of that society. In a tribal culture
the elders were honored, in a traditional system seen as authorities, still. But in a modern system, where consumption and productivity is the highest value, old age is blacklisted.
The reality is that older people, normally, don’t have the same physical strength and agility as when they were young. The body changes naturally in time. This is not a bad thing as the focus shifts from velocity and external concerns to more calmness, wisdom and internal development. It is a wise move of nature to foster this by means of our body, otherwise most of us, in our present society, would never take the time to meet themselves. Either the slowing down of the body or an overload of stress, called burn out, can help us to settle down and realize what life is REALLY about.
Life changing events, which can be illnesses, death of loved ones or just getting older help us to experience life in its full range. Seen from this perspective, getting older can be a less painful way to a full life and wisdom – if we embrace ageing instead of fighting it.
The many benefits of life in older years
Contrary to what people fear, older age is a huge fountain of joy and happiness. There are studies which show clearly how both increase with life span, and I certainly can confirm that. (I wrote a blog post about why I don’t want to be younger than I actually am, you can check it out here.) We have the chance to grow and develop our personality and our various lines of intelligences (cognitive, emotional, spiritual, artistic etc.). We can rise beyond our limitations and see things from many perspectives which allows us to understand more and more about ourselves, the world and the interconnections of everything. This is really exciting – and it should convey the message to younger people that older age is a huge potential – if you are willing to explore it.Don’t be afraid, be prepared!
Don’t be afraid, be prepared!
This is a slogan used by Dutchsinse who is forecasting earthquakes and he is predicting correctly everything here in Italy ever since we began following him. And we are not afraid anymore because we know what is coming and when.
In connection with getting older this means: be prepared to watch out for the jewels along the way and do your part to pick them up. And wind them into a necklace of beauty and wisdom.
The Wisdom Factory goes deeper into this topic. We are offering the 5 months live broadcast series “CONSCIOUS AGEING”. You are invited to join and find inspiration to open up your vision about getting older and ageing. You can check it out here.