I love long distance train travel. I love the clickety clack of the wheels on the rails. I love the ever changing, spectacular scenery of the Australian countryside and coast. I enjoy the time to sit and relax. And, I enjoy the people that I meet. Recently I travelled from Sydney to Taree by train. On my return from Taree I met Gail. I was humbled and inspired by her story …
we measure ourselves against ourselves and not against an external benchmark of what’s considered ‘normal’. What if we acknowledge that wherever we’re at with our health, physical fitness, parenting, caring, work, or any other aspect of our lives is great. The difference it can make to our attitude and our success can be profound according to Dr Dave Alred who spoke at a conference I attended recently. This is what I learned ..
We all know that eating well and exercising are important for good health and to age well. We do actually know this. What happens if we know this and we don’t do anything about it?
We’re often asked about what advice we’d give our younger self, but how often are we asked what advice we’d give to our older self? Rarely … if ever. Recently I had the privilege of attending a Seniors School run by the Uniting Church in Balgowlah. It was fun and inspiring. There was a double birthday celebration for two women – one had turned 80 and the other, 90 years of age. As a result of that brief visit, this is the advice I’d give my older self …
The creeks had burst their banks, the only road out was flooded with water hurtling past at over 1metre high and powerful enough to sweep any vehicle downstream along with trees and all manner of debris that was loose and vulnerable to such strength and intensity. There’s no landline, no mobile, no Internet and I’m by myself. Whilst I’m happily ensconced in the warmth of our shed with a fire constantly burning I’m acutely aware of my isolation. Combined with my forced isolation and the company of Martin Seligman and Gloria Steinem, here’s the four things I discovered about me and ageing …
I’m enjoying becoming older. Not only am I enjoying my life today I’m looking forward to the years ahead as I become even older. I’m curious about what is yet to unfold, yet content to be living in this moment. I meet many others who feel the same way and numerous others who see the future as one primarily of physical and potential cognitive decline with nothing really to look forward to or plan for in their lives. I believe that enjoying becoming older is something that’s possible for everyone providing we think differently. Needless to say I was delighted when I made this discovery.
Getting older is potentially powerful. Nearly 8 million Australians are over 50 years of age – that’s one-third of the country’s population! Yet how we perceive getting older and how older people are treated influences employment opportunities, lifestyle choices, health management, and marketing campaigns. Here’s one simple way that we can all challenge and disrupt age stereotypes.
I’ve recently finished Ashton Applewhite’s book: ‘This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism’. Applewhite is a skilled writer, thorough researcher, and great commentator on becoming older. One of my favourite takeaways was the idea that we are ALL old people in training. Why’s this idea important? Read more