You’re Only as Young as You Feel
Scientists have done a vast amount of research on how the mind affects the body. And it becomes even more critical as you age. And that’s when that other cliché turns out to be correct as well; “you’re only as old as you feel.” In fact, studies have shown that people with a positive mindset about aging live on average 7.5 years longer than those without because attitude affects happiness, health, the speed of the aging process, and even how long we live. So, now that we know this, how do we do something about it? After all, it’s easier said than done, but the good news is that it is possible. Neuroscience shows that our brains continue to develop and change even as adults and can be reshaped over time, forming new neural pathways. If you change your mindset, you can live your best possible life. FirstLantic has compiled some tips to get you started!
First of all, let’s talk about the two different types of mindsets. We are all born with a set of innate abilities, and that is our fixed or ingrained mindset. However, through hard work and persistence, we can improve our abilities, and that is where the growth mindset comes into play. People with a growth mindset are open to change, interested in learning new things and constantly improving. They also have a belief that they can control their destiny. The growth mindset is the one that we all can develop further.
Be a lifelong learner –remain curious about the world around you. Take a language class, do the crossword puzzle every day, study a new culture, learn about how to help the environment. The point is that it doesn’t matter what you do, but you have to be open to learning new things and be willing to adapt to the world as it changes.
Maintain a social life – keeping close to your network of friends and family can help keep your outlook positive. Even if you can’t see people regularly, get on the phone, FaceTime, or set up a Zoom call. The point is that you have to work at keeping connections in your life. You need to be proactive and don’t wait for people to contact you. And try to make new friends by joining a group online or offline to connect with people who have similar passions and interests.
Exercise – take a walk, play golf, enroll in a yoga class or get on the treadmill. You can’t ignore that exercise helps you feel better about yourself and life in general.
Get out in nature – try to experience the wonder of the world as you did when you were a child. Look at a bird more closely, the ways that the trees on a branch are shaped, or the petals of a flower. Pay attention to the little things, and you will rediscover the magic of our environment.
Ask questions – don’t be afraid of not knowing something. Ask your grandkids to help you understand new technologies or find a class that you can take. Keeping up with new things can empower you.
Don’t retire – If you like what you do, keep doing it. Look at Warren Buffett. He is 91 years young, CEO of one of the most successful companies globally, and is widely acknowledged as the foremost wunderkind of finance.
Don’t let others label you – the next time someone makes a wisecrack about age, politely point out that ageism is as bad as racism, and maybe they will think twice before commenting on that again.
Look forward to aging – I know what you’re thinking. Why would I look forward to getting older? First of all, it’s a privilege, and many people don’t get that opportunity. Secondly, age brings benefits like wisdom, experience, and insight that you don’t have when you’re younger. Why not share that wisdom with a younger person and volunteer? Helping someone else is one of the best ways to get out of your head and realize your fortune.
In summary, controlling our destiny is possible to a large degree. Of course, we can’t control everything, but we can affect how we think about what happens to us and around us. It’s not easy, but it’s possible. So, what are you waiting for? Think positive, work on your outlook and see if you don’t start to feel just a bit better day by day!
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