Aging May Suck but What Freedom It Brings

This week’s podcast discussion is all about aging – what you hate about it, what you love about it, and how best to live through it.

RICHquestion – what is the #1 thing you struggle with as you age?

RICHtags to tweet and facebook with us – #agegracefully #shedthebitch

Discussion:

Confession Time – I am not crazy about getting old. I always thought I would be, I always thought I would be that Cool, Sophisticated, even Hip aging woman.

Then I turned 55 and all hell broke loose:
• My mortality hit me as I started feeling the pains and aches
• The reality of aging and ailing siblings and loved ones –
o I freaked when someone asked if all of my siblings were still living
o Spouses started having strokes and cancer…
• What I thought was a year or two, turned out to be a decade gone in a flash
• In my improv class – I am the oldest person in the room
• Never having been shy of a camera, I was suddenly hiding from it. Thanks social media.

And recently from my series of annual check ups – learned my bone density in my hips are weak and at risk…. And I have to go in for a mammogram follow-up. Now, that sent shivers of fear up and down my spine.

BUT ENOUGH OF THE BOO HOO…… the benefits of aging far outweigh the VANITY, EGO, DESPERATION FOR YOUTH, and REALITY of ever wearing a bikini again or getting rid of the eye bags I inherited from my dad.

Benefits:
– Having a “I don’t give a shit “attitude
– Knowing exactly what you want and don’t want
– Transitioning from working on ‘work’ to working on ‘you’
– Smart enough to know better
– Appreciate the small things in life… and not sweating the small stuff

So, how do you age gracefully when you feel sucky about it:

Well, many folks discuss the basics: 1. Reduce Stress 2. Get Plenty of Sleep 3. Eat a Balanced Diet 4. Wear Sunscreen 8. Keep Active and more…

I want to touch on the emotional, spiritual, mental, financial, and physical aspects that impact whether you embrace aging or you fight it, negatively, every step of the way.

1. Accept it head on as it is going to happen, it is happening, whether you fight it or not.
2. Be honest to yourself about WHY it sucks to you.

a. Losing loved ones
b. Dying and leaving this world behind
c. Being forgotten
d. Losing physical attraction
e. Losing mental capacity
f. Becoming frail and dependent
g. Not having enough money to live gracefully

3. Get to know YOU…

a. What you want and don’t want
b. The things that bring you true joy and happiness
c. What is important to you – causes, values, spirituality, qualities, etc.
d. How do you want to live, socialize, travel, save, etc…

4. Become the person you want to be…

5. Remedy your regrets, apologies, forgiveness and say I LOVE YOU daily

6. As Ellen says…. Be kind to one another

7. Be THANKFUL

8. Lean on your FAITH

9. Share your story if only on paper –
a. Note to Self…. CBS This Morning
b. Capture digital photo albums or writings which illustrate your life to date, today and tomorrow

10. Put a Graceful Aging plan together to accept and deal with the above.
a. This should include details about your health, responses to health events, financials, etc.. – to feel secure that you will be taking care of.

All of this will help you to then address the more tactical things AND even will take care of themselves:

  • Reduce stress and smell the roses
  • Seek joy and love
  • Get off your butt
  • Eat well (and happy)
  • Annual checkups – all of them, regularly.
  • Care for yourself – wear sunscreen, take your medications, vitamins.

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