In this post I want to talk a little about ‘ageing well’, being active about ageing.
By that, I don’t mean trying to hold back the tide of time by any means possible: Botox, liposuction, plastic surgery and the like. Though that’s not to say you should eschew a good skin care routine and a good moisturizer. We are a skin care company after all!
There’s an old adage addressed to a young man contemplating marriage, that says ‘if you want to know what your bride will look like in few years’ time, look at her mother’. Yet the secret to ageing well is more to do with lifestyle than with genes. As this article from the Daily Mail posits:
‘A study has found getting eight hours or more of sleep a night, taking a multi-vitamin and doing regular exercise all make women more likely to look younger. But less organised women, who forget to moisturise, sometimes leave off the sunscreen and do not manage to stay at their target weight all damage their chances of ageing well.’
Studies show, it will come as no surprise to hear, that smoking and sunshine are bad for your skin. Being overweight cuts your chances of looking young by a fifth and women who often have dry skin have a 30 percent lower chance of looking young. A good a point as any to give mention to our new facial serum – with a focus group as I write. So keep watching our social media platforms for news on that.
But prosaic aspects to ageing well aside, what I also want to get a handle on here is more the psychological aspects. Put another way: accepting your ageing and doing the best with it you can – but in a proactive attitude rather than a passive acceptance and giving in to it. This definition of active ageing from the World Health Organization says it well:
‘Active ageing is the process of optimizing opportunities for health, participation and security in order to enhance quality of life as people age. … “Health” refers to physical, mental and social wellbeing as expressed in the WHO definition of health.’
The article goes on to say that active ageing is something that lets people realize their potential for physical, social, and mental well-being. It’s a process, a state, that provides adequate protection, security and care when it’s needed.
So, the term ‘active’ then, in this instance, means more than its literal sense: being physically active and/or a part of the workforce. It means active in the sense of continued participation in social, economic, cultural, spiritual and civic affairs. By this definition then, older people who retire from work through illness or disability can still make active contributions to family, peers and communities.
“It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old, they grow old because they stop pursuing dreams.” ― Gabriel García Márquez
Don’t age gracefully – age adventurously
My parting shot on this topic comes from Road Scholar.Org
‘In 2017, we invite you to celebrate aging with us. We’re kicking off an exciting new social media movement designed to invite the world to think differently about growing older. Because here at Road Scholar, we’re not okay with being told to “age gracefully.” We don’t think that’s enough.
We want to age boldly. We want to age proudly.
We want to age adventurously.
The site is all about exhorting you to get out there and do it. Climb Machu Pichu, walk the length of Hadrian’s Wall, or whatever it might happen to be.
But fear not if you’re really not into physical activity. As Road Scholar says:
‘Aging Adventurously isn’t reserved for the skydivers, hikers and zipliners. It’s all about pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and learning new things! It could mean learning a new language, taking a cooking class or learning about new technology. #AgeAdventurously with us as we explore the world of apps, hashtags and digital tools together!’