Turning on Your Fountain of Youth
By Roselyn Poon
How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you were? ~Satchel Paige
Aging is inevitable; however, old age is optional because it’s personal. You can decide if you are old or simply of an age. Aging and old age affects all of us sooner or later; the trick is deferring old age to as late as possible by introducing lifestyle changes now.
The two most important things I learned from Tony Robbins are:
• We will do more to escape PAIN than to receive PLEASURE.
• We need a big enough WHY to change.
Let’s start by taking a serious look at old age and see if we can crank up enough pain to get you to turn on your Fountain of Youth. The following is a brief look at some of the issues that will arise leading up to and during old age. Most can occur at any time; however, they are more prevalent and intense during classic “old age.”
Think about the last time you woke up feeling tired, with blurry vision and muscle soreness. Now, imagine waking up every day feeling that way, with the added knowledge that there is no quick fix. Remember how difficult simple things were when you had your arm, leg or some other body part in a plaster cast or heavily bandaged? I bet that was the longest six weeks of your life. Now, think about having this kind of challenge, thanks to arthritis, every day for the rest of your life.
Most elderly people find even the simplest tasks, such as dressing, reading, getting to the doctor, answering the phone, showering and pushing a grocery cart challenging. Paying bills and keeping up with the ever-changing government and medical forms each year is hard enough for you now, so imagine what it will be like 10 years from now. Everyday tasks that you currently have no problem with, and in fact don’t even think about, represent challenges, barriers and limitations for our elderly and maybe even the future you.
Today, your cell phone is seen as an extension of your arm. You have adapted to the current technology, well maybe you understand 80%, but that’s OK because you know how to use the functions that are important to you. However, technology is zooming ahead at a ridiculous rate and if you don’t make a serious effort to stay up with it, one day you will find that you only understand 20% and you are out of the loop. Many elderly people are out of today’s communication loop and may not even speak to another person for days. Imagine yourself isolated and wondering if you would speak to anyone today. How would you feel?
How do you maintain your independence when everything around you is constantly changing and becoming alien to you? In the not too distant future, our roads may well be packed with driverless vehicles, with new road rules to accommodate them, and unless your car is electric it may not even be allowed on the roads. Flying cars are set to arrive in the not too distant future.
In 2019, the most widespread conditions affecting those 65 and older include arthritis, heart disease, stroke, cancer, pneumonia, stress and the flu. Accidents, especially falls that result in hip fractures, are also unfortunately common in the elderly. One in eight baby boomers will get Alzheimer’s disease after 65. Alzheimer’s is reaching a crisis point. It steals your memories, your independence, your control and ultimately your life.
These are just some of the challenge’s old age has to offer. Is this what you want to look forward to over the next few years? From where I’m standing, there is no upside to getting older any faster than you need to, and in fact, there are plenty of great reasons to becoming younger.
Taking old age seriously and believing that you can do something about it is your weapon of choice for your future.
You have an alternative to old age, and it starts with knowing that you have options. Just because everyone around you has accepted old age as inevitable, and believes that they are already moving into their twilight years, attributing every ache and pain to aging, doesn’t mean you have to. I firmly believe that just because something is seen as normal, doesn’t necessarily make it right, especially when it comes to old age. Normal is the word we use to describe conforming to a standard; usual, typical, average or expected. There is no mention of normal meaning right.
The critical first step is to forget about your chronological age. They are right when they say that it is just a number. It allows others to slot you neatly into a category: middle-aged, old-aged, teen-aged, and treat you accordingly. In reality, there are at least three different ways we can gauge your aging; however, the most important is your psychological age. This is how you feel inside and how you see yourself. Your psychological age and your rate of aging are controlled by your state of mind, the beliefs you have regarding where you are in your life timeline and what the future will be like. If your chronological age is 65, but you feel 55, then it becomes your choice as to which of the two ages is the controller on your timeline. The trick is that you must truly believe that you are your psychological age. For example, seeing your future and making decisions as a 55-year-old person would. You can’t say you are 55 and run your life as a 65-year-old.
I go into the seven steps of reclaiming valuable youthful years in my book; however, if you have created a big enough “why you should reset your inner clock,” don’t wait a moment longer, just accept your new younger age as is. Don’t give your chronological age a moment’s thought from here on out.
Now you know that you have options, and options equal power.Roselyn Poon is an author, speaker and motivator on all things to do with living younger, longer. Her latest book, “Reset Your Inner Clock and Live Younger Longer” is available on Amazon.