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Stop moaning about ageing

One of my clients was recently bemoan­ing the ageing process. I poin­ted out that it was a lot bet­ter than the altern­at­ive. She seemed taken aback, moment­ar­ily unsure of what altern­at­ive I was talking about! After laugh­ing about it we got into a dis­cus­sion as to what age­ing means at this time, and why it’s seen in an almost entirely negative light.

Having been in the music busi­ness from the age of 18 I thought I was get­ting old before I hit 20! So I’ve had plenty of time to fig­ure out that’s it’s crazy to worry about age­ing. But it’s dif­fi­cult, when our fear of it is stoked by any­one who’s try­ing to sell any­thing. Our enjoy­ment of life is dimin­ished, because as we grow older — that is, if we have the good fortune to stay alive — we get lumbered with a whole freight train full of soci­etal baggage.

Older people are frequently dismissed, patronised or ostracised. Too often their wis­dom is ignored, their life exper­i­ence belittled, their beauty unseen, and their pres­ence reduced to almost invis­ib­il­ity. Given that we’re an age­ing pop­u­la­tion, this wide­spread, neg­at­ive atti­tude is tragic. Not only does it tar­nish everyone’s life as they grow older, but it gives young people pre­cious little to look for­ward to.

Get­ting older has many, many bene­fits. If we’re so hung up on the youth we’ve left behind that we can’t see where we are in the present, then we miss these gifts. What a ter­rible waste!

Time to stop it?

Simple. Listen out for ageist moan­ing (yours and oth­ers’) and don’t par­ti­cip­ate in it. You’ll not only retain your joie de vivre, but you’ll be doing the next gen­er­a­tion a huge favour too.


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