BLOG SERIES: PART ONE “HOW NOT TO ACT OLD BEFORE YOUR TIME!”

You don’t stop laughing because you grow old. You grow old because you stop laughing.”   – Michael Pritchard

Welcome to the first of my four part series blog called “How Not To Act Old  Before Your Time! ”  Every few weeks, you can read some humorous antidotes that will hopefully make you smile or laugh (which is also a way not to act old!)

If you were born between 1940-1967, you may find yourself a little past the desire to go hang out in the local bar, but definitely not ready for the senior center or nightly bingo!   This in-between, mostly boomer group, is more active and living longer than ever.  Working, traveling, volunteering, enjoying exercise, friends, family, activities…..being engaged in life!  I see examples of this everyday with my Silver Connections members!

But, as the years creep up for all of us, there are some things that you can do (or not do) that will help you not to act old.  There is nothing wrong with growing older, it is part of life, but just make sure you don’t get there before it’s time!

The point here is not to act like a twenty-five year old, but to be someone a twenty-five year old won’t snicker at!  Or, at least be aware when you are doing something that might be a tad over the hill.

Excerpts from the book “How Not To Act Old “by Pamela Redmond Satran.

LEARN TO TYPE WITH YOUR THUMBS

Don’t type with you index finger!   The young only text or type on their cell phone, Blackberry or iPhone with their thumbs.  Older people- the index finger does it all.  Thumbs, thumbs, thumbs!  You have to pretend you’re index finger does not exist.

DON’T LEAVE A MESSAGE

Only older people leave voice mails.  Many of us now communicate by cell phone rather than a landline.  It is assumed today that if you see a missed call, you will call back. If it is urgent- text.

Try it!  Call a younger person in your life and leave a l-o-n-g, detailed message.   You may not get called back.  If you leave a lengthy message, they may not listen or be under the illusion that they already talked to you (or more precisely that you already talked with them.)

Or, you can leave a short, detailed message:  “Call me as soon as you get this.”  You may then get a call back in three days.

The best course of action?   Call, hang up and don’t leave a voice mail.  Then, they will see your number and be nervous that you did not leave a message and they will be curious. They will call you back.

DON’T WALK SMALL

Active, youthful people take BIG steps!    Most people’s steps get smaller with each passing year and then eventually it is the shuffle steps with I-Have-to-be-careful-that-I-don’t-fall-and break-something.  Walking down the street?  Take BIG, bold, wide steps. No small, shuffling steps allowed….. yet!

EDIT THE STORIES

As individuals age, they tend to like to tell stories which can be quite charming.  Although, if every time a subject is mentioned, you will be reminded of a really great story that relates to it, however marginally, it can get old (just like you are acting!)  Bring up any topic and there comes a long, drawn out story that somehow ties into the subject.  Say bees and you hear “I once had a bee colony in my yard and you wouldn’t believe……..”   Say hats and “I used to wear a hat all the time, the one time I wore a pink hat…..”  Not everything deserves a story, no matter how much someone likes to share it with the world.  So, edit any compulsion to turn everything into a tale.  Storytelling is the stuff of life, but it can easily start to sound like parables, which too often turn into sermons, which tend to put people to sleep.

So, are you acting old before your time?  Stay tuned for the second part of this series coming soon with more tips. In the meantime….. laugh and keep on truckin’ baby (with big, big  steps!)

Laura Kay House, MA, is the founder and owner of Silver Connections, located in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Silver Connections provides numerous socializing opportunities through events and travel, quality members and connections for age 55+, active and single adults. 

http://www.silverconnections.org