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Now Is Year Zero: Aging With a Better Mindset*

We are facing a never-ending battle with time. As we get older we find that we have a lot to face up to. We can also find ourselves tinged with regrets but we also may think about making significant changes to our lives. Getting older is, for some people, about edging one step closer to death. But this is an incredibly depressing approach to look at life. But unfortunately, there are so many people that have this frame of mind. So with this in mind, how can we age in a better sense so we can get the most out of life, but also ensure that we are pushing forward into old age with a better mindset?

Fine-Tune Your Faculties and Senses

As we get older, this is one of the key things that we need to address. The common misconception with getting older is that we get weaker. But this is not the case unless you decide to let life take you in that direction. The fact is that when we think about ourselves, biologically and biomechanically, we are machines, so we can fine-tune ourselves in certain ways. It could be as simple as getting a regular eye exam or hearing test on a regular basis just to make sure these components are fighting fit. But you also need to make sure that you treat your mind and body as if it is a muscle. Because people think that something like Alzheimer’s is something we cannot prevent, but when we consider what getting older is all about, it’s about making sure that we are as finely tuned as possible. This means doing those simple things to get back in touch with ourselves. 

Taking Action

Possibly the hardest thing to do, when we are fighting old mother time is to take a stance against everything that is wearing us down. In life, we have various hardships whether it’s physical, mental, or emotional. And this can leave us wallowing in despair. But in order to truly get more out of life, we need to take action even if we feel we suffer negative experiences. It’s these things that provide the biggest lessons of all in life. If we really want to make the most of our time, we should never have “negative” incidents. In fact, we can use these negative issues to change our perspective in the long-term. When we take action and decide that we won’t put up with this sort of thing anymore it’s this drive that forces real change. This is where we can finally alter our lives for the better. Unfortunately, it usually requires heading to a new low in order to realize this.

Look at Yourself

We all have aspects of ourselves that we would like to change but, save plastic surgery, it is not the right course of action. What we can do, as we get older, is shift our attitudes towards getting older. People on the “wrong” side of 50 are happier than the people on the “right” side of 50. And this is because they’ve been given the gift of time to truly learn what is important. It’s something that we all have in our 20s and 30s where we feel we’ve got to push up the career ladder for some purpose. It could be financial, it could be an achievement, but when we are out the other side, we can understand how many victories have been hollow. We all want a good life and lifestyle can be the key to living life with some sort of purpose, but we have to take a long, hard look at ourselves to understand if we have been heading in the right direction all this time. Any journey is not a wasted one, but if we want to save some time, we’ve got to ask ourselves the questions that we may have shied away from.

Learning to Forgive Yourself

Getting older is all about getting more perspective and hopefully, it’s about forgiving ourselves. Honesty is something that we feel more inclined towards as we get older because we become more self-aware, which results in us being more authentic. And this is where we need to nurture the right relationships to help us be our true selves. When we get older, we may find that the things we considered incredibly important as youths are completely pointless now. But this is nothing to be regretful about. Ultimately, we can see our children have the same hangups as we did. But this is why parents try to teach their children certain life lessons only to have them throw them back in our face. But while we may try to help children so they don’t have as many regrets as us we’ve also got to learn to forgive our children when they decide to forge their own path. But this is what life is all about. Living a life well lived regardless of the mistakes will be worth more than a sheltered existence. And if we didn’t do things right, we need to forgive ourselves because we still have the future.

Making the Most of Now

There is nothing we can do about yesterday and there is also nothing you can do about tomorrow which means that all we have is right now. The most important tool we can all learn as we get older is to look back on the day we’ve just had and decide if we’ve had a day worth living. It doesn’t mean that we’ve got to go diving out of airplanes every day, but we need to make sure that we live a life that means if we ever have to shuffle off this mortal coil that, actually, we did enough. There is nothing more sobering then when you start to have friends from school pass away, and it can help you to reframe your perspective. When we first start to feel grief it can make us regret things we did or said, but also help us to reframe our attitude to life. And it’s about getting that balance right. It can certainly make us see the light because life is short. But if we want to do something and we stop ourselves, this is not beneficial for our frame of mind. While people will have regrets in life after a while, certain regrets shrink into nothingness. Others loom large, but these are big decisions in terms of careers. But life takes you in a certain direction regardless of the control you think you exert over it. This is why it is so important to make the most of everything you have right now.

Learning to go into old age with a better mindset is something that may naturally happen, but we can’t take this for granted. There are things we can do, like fine-tuning our abilities to ensure that we are as mentally and physically strong as possible, but sometimes we’ve got to address certain components of our lives. One of the biggest regrets of people on their way out of life is that they didn’t live a life that was true to themselves, that these people did what others expected of them. If there’s any takeaway in our lives that we need to learn right now is that we need to be authentic. And the one true way to do this is to try out various attitudes and roles to discover the one that is most relevant to your path in life. This makes life diverse and fun, and even if it takes your entire life to get the answer, you’ve had fun along the way. Right now is your year zero.

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