Table of Contents
- 1.- Embrace wrinkles, sagging skin, and gray hair
- 2.- Stay active and engage in physical activity
- 3.- Cultivate a positive attitude
- 4.- Keep learning
- 5.- Connect with others
- 6.- Take care of yourself
- 7.- Find reasons to laugh
- 8.- Engage in meaningful activities
- 9.- Find pro-aging role models and follow in their footsteps
- 10.- Have an attitude of gratitude
Embracing aging and aging gracefully is a mindset shift that can take time and effort, but it is ultimately a rewarding process.
As we age, our bodies and abilities change, and it can be easy to focus on what we can no longer do or what we have lost.
However, aging also brings new opportunities, wisdom, and perspective. Here are a few ways to embrace aging and make the most of the years ahead.
1.- Embrace wrinkles, sagging skin, and gray hair
These are natural signs of aging, and they are a part of who you are. They are also markers of your experiences and the life you have lived.
When you have a strong sense of self and do not seek validation by trying to look 20 instead of the best version of yourself at your current age, it will reflect on your attitude and appearance.
You will come across as youthful and vibrant, whether you pursue cosmetic enhancements or not, whether you color your hair or not.
2.- Stay active and engage in physical activity
As we age, it can be more challenging to stay active, but regular exercise is crucial for maintaining our physical and mental health.
Engage in activities that you enjoy, whether it’s dancing, swimming, or taking a walk.
If you don’t enjoy physical activity, then remind yourself of the benefits of being active and make use of good old discipline to get those steps in daily or go to the gym.
3.- Cultivate a positive attitude
Your attitude plays a big role in how you experience aging. Try to focus on the things you are grateful for and the good in your life.
Surround yourself with positive people who uplift and inspire you. Breaking the Age Code by Becca Levy, Ph.D. explains how our attitude toward aging affects how we age to a greater degree than we may think
According to Levy, having a positive attitude towards aging can even extend our life expectancy by 7.5 years. That’s not nothing!
4.- Keep learning
Our brains are capable of learning new things throughout our lives.
In order to keep our brains nimble and sharp, we need to keep engaging in activities that will challenge us.
Take a class, read a book, try a new hobby or learn a new language. Keeping our minds active and engaged can help to maintain cognitive function and boost our mood.
Activities such as taking an improv class have been demonstrated to not only keep the brain nimble but also reduce the odds of developing Alzheimer’s.
5.- Connect with others
Social connections are crucial for our well-being at any age. Spend time with friends and family, join a club or group, or volunteer in your community.
According to psychiatrist Phil Stutz, connecting with others can also help stave off depression and other mental health conditions.
The more we keep to ourselves, the less we will feel like engaging with others. This can turn into a vicious circle that ultimately leads to a lonely existence that can accelerate aging.
6.- Take care of yourself
This includes getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, and managing stress. It’s also important to see your doctor for regular check-ups and screenings.
Too many people skip regular checkups only to end up with a diagnosis they could well have avoided had they been on top of their health screenings.
Managing stress through therapy, meditation, mindfulness, journaling, and yoga, should be ingrained in your daily life. Stress is one of the most aging factors. Make sure to take steps to curb it.
7.- Find reasons to laugh
Whether it’s by joining an improv group, watching funny Instagram videos, or comedy shows on Netflix, make sure you find ways to laugh regularly.
There is even such a thing as laugh therapy and even laughter yoga. Laughter releases endorphins and improves our mood.
Taking ourselves – and the aches and pains that may come with aging – with humor, goes a long way when it comes to aging gracefully.
8.- Engage in meaningful activities
This doesn’t have to be something earth-shattering or mind-blowing. Just something that is meaningful to you.
Whether that is volunteering at a woman’s shelter or writing a book about your area of expertise, sharing your wisdom online through a blog, or becoming a yoga instructor, what matters most is that what you do on a daily basis feeds our innate need to feel like we are touching other people’s lives.
Some people love the idea of retiring and just doing leisurely things. Others thrive on making a difference until the day they die.
If you belong to the latter group, keep on going no matter what others tell you.
9.- Find pro-aging role models and follow in their footsteps
Everyone ages differently and, as we mentioned before, our attitudes can largely affect how we age.
Find role models in your life, or even online – people who are aging the way you aspire to be when you are older – and do the things they do.
Maybe you don’t follow their lifestyle to a T, but you can definitely let yourself be influenced by their joie de vivre.
10.- Have an attitude of gratitude
Aging is a natural part of life, and it is something to be embraced, not feared. By midlife, most of us have lost friends and loved ones to disease and old age.
Instead of succumbing to feelings of defeat, this should prompt us to live the life our friends gone too soon couldn’t live. Let’s be grateful for being alive.
When we lose our elders, it could be easy to feel we’re next and focus on the short time we may have left. Instead, we can focus on the now, and find ways to leave a legacy for our younger friends and loved ones.
By focusing on staying active, cultivating a positive attitude, keeping learning, connecting with others, and taking care of ourselves, we can make the most of the years ahead.