As you approach your retirement age, you may be disheartened to see the physical changes your body undergoes as part of natural aging. As a culture, we tend to emphasize the value of youth and beauty over wisdom and age, and a lingering fear of growing old and obsolete permeates through society. How then can one learn to feel empowered and embrace aging instead?
The best way to achieve this is to change your mindset and start adopting a positive attitude towards all that matters to you in your daily life as an older adult. Much of people’s unfavorable attitudes towards aging stem from the deterioration of mental and physical health. Hence, it is vital to find ways to improve these conditions if you want to lead a fulfilling life after retirement. Here are three ways you can adopt a healthier attitude towards aging:
Vary the Age Ranges of Your Social Circle
When you are surrounded by people of different ages, you will tend to feel younger than only having friends of the same age as you. Younger friends can encourage you to try new things whilst older friends provide advice on facing the challenges in life.
To interact with people of different generations, you can try volunteering to read to younger children at your local community center and adopting older role models who are healthy and visibly enjoying life.
Embrace New Changes
Society provides us with many out-of-date stereotypes about older individuals. Previously, people expect one’s physical activeness and involvement in social and work life to decrease once they hit a certain milestone age. However, today, older adults are staying in the workforce longer than earlier generations, and even taking better care of themselves. Even retired adults are hitting a level of activeness that matches or even surpass that of when they were working 40 hours a week.
Older people are not living the same way their grandparents once did. In the past, insecurities about their body and abilities meant that people preferred to hide their age. Now, many older adults are embracing these, and putting a larger emphasis on life experiences, turning aging from a disadvantage to an asset.
Tweak Your Attitudes
Studies have revealed that a large part of aging is psychological; you are only as old as you think yourself to be. It is common for people to identify less and less with their actual ages once they hit adulthood, due to individual personalities and life experiences. Research has shown that just feeling more youthful can safeguard against age-related illnesses like depression and dementia.
Instead of comparing the current you with the past you, think about how you – mind and body – are good right now. “What is good in my life” can be a great mantra to live by, promoting a focus on a more positive outlook on life.
Post-retirement life does not always have to be a drag. There are many ways to go about an independent living lifestyle that can boost your confidence in aging gracefully. Here at Conservatory At North Austin, we provide everything you need to lead a fruitful life as an older adult, including our Dimensions program to keep you fit and active, and a community you can count on.