How Your Perspective in Life Changes with Age
While we age, our perception of life doesn’t age; it changes. Things that seemed of grave importance yesterday, suddenly seem trivial today, and vice versa. What you might not have noticed, however, is that some of our skills improve or don’t diminish as we age, which can affect our perception of life positively.
Perception of aging
The real problem with aging is not the increasing number of years, but how it’s viewed in a very negative light. This gets compounded by the fact that we live in a time when we’re all expected to live longer. It’s a wonder anyone would want to live longer reading about all the problems that accompany aging.
While aging does come with its own set of challenges, we know that every decade we go through has its own set. With a deeper understanding of life and more tools, equipment, and devices specially designed to help face aging, it’s only fair to say that dealing with aging is much easier than what it used to be. One such tool is https://www.grayingwithgrace.com/ which provides loads of information that make the entire aging process a pleasure: from different mobility devices to different recipes. When you’re willing to try different tools or different ways of doing things, you’ll come up with a lot of resources that you can use to your benefit. As an aging adult, you become very aware and very accepting of what your limitations are as well as where your strengths lie. This allows you to go about your life in a much more realistic manner.
Certain skills and abilities do diminish as we age, especially our physical abilities. Poorer vision or hearing are clear examples. Other abilities can decline because of the inactive lifestyle that characterizes retirement life, where you neither work anymore, nor compensate for that lack of work by keeping mentally and physically active often.
Let’s have a look at the abilities and skills that improve or don’t diminish with aging and how that affects our perception of life.
When we’re young, it’s not uncommon to blow everything out of proportion. We make assumptions, jump to conclusions a lot, and rarely take the time to analyze a situation in all its details. We see things in black and white, which is hardly ever the case. As you age, you learn there’s more gray out there than on the hairs of your head.
The less likely you are to make assumed judgments, the more likely you will make the right decisions in your life. Chalk it up to experience, older adults make better decisions because they look at the whole picture. It’s tremendously helpful in everyday life that is full of decision making. According to members of Cornell University, we make 226.7 decisions a day just on food!
Even if our vision and hearing may weaken, our tongues stay active and our use of vocabulary improves. If you’ve seen an older person doing a crossword puzzle you might have realized that. When we are middle aged, we are still expanding our vocabulary and honing it. With a broader vocabulary, an older adult is better able to express themselves than their younger counterparts. Learning new vocabulary is a cognitive ability that is resilient to aging in otherwise healthy elderly adults.
The ability to learn doesn’t diminish; what can diminish is the way something is learned. For instance, rote memorization doesn’t work well with older people. A strong vocabulary can put you more out there because you become more confident in speaking and expressing yourself.
Alongside these skills, aging has its perks in how we live our lives and how we perceive happiness.
Despite the losses and troubles over the years, elders can remain content. Why and how? For starters, they take advantage of all the tools out there to help during aging whether they help their physical, mental or emotional well-being. This is one of the differences between aging and aging healthy. Everyone grows older, the secret is to do it healthily.
A second reason for staying content is that elderly people don’t take everything to heart. They don’t see the need or want to spend time fighting over trivial matters. They have better things to do with their time. If they’re forced to take some matters into battle, they will certainly choose the battles worth fighting for.
Perhaps the biggest perk in aging is caring less about other people’s opinions. There’s a huge difference between respecting different opinions, and letting others dictate your life with their opinions.
When we’re young, there’s a strong desire to be accepted by others, and it takes a great toll on our well-being. We will often do things and even think in ways that are contrary to our nature. However, as a senior you call the shots, and you’re free from the chains that society places on different groups of people on how they should look, dress, speak, or act.
Focus on the positive
The amygdala is the part of the brain that unites emotions and memory. If there’s one thing we can be thankful for diminishing as we age, it’s the amygdala function because when it weakens, it makes us focus more on the positive rather than the negative.
In fact, there is what is known as the ‘amygdala hijack’, where our immediate response to an issue is emotional and overwhelming: your brain’s response to emotional or psychological stress. This lessens as we age, because our thoughts and actions become more rooted in the conscious mind, rather than the unconscious. When we minimize the negative and maximize the positive, it’s simply easier to view life as a happy place.
Your views on life change as you grow older because your age itself determines how you view life. For those who take full advantage of all the available tools to improve their life and lifestyle, they wind up happier. As you realize what really counts in life and refuse to submit to the notion that “aging just makes life tougher,” you’ll be one happy person and a self-sufficient one, at that.