A birthday is just another day where you go to work and people give you love. Age is just a state of mind, and you are as old as you think you are. You have to count your blessings and be happy. – Abhishek Bachchan
Are you using your age as a recurrent excuse not to take action in your life? What is your perception of aging? Are you afraid of getting old or do you have a positive view of aging?
Why your perception of aging matters
In this article I will tell you why all these questions matter more than you might think.
I’ve always been amazed at the number of people who are complaining about being too old, but as they said “You will understand when you will be my age”. They might be right but I vowed to never tell myself that I’m too old to do what I want to do. I refuse to play that game and I have good reasons for that.
People repeat to themselves the same mantra every day again and again and again, and not suprisingly, they end up believing it. It is easy to fall prey to that belief when you’ve been hypnotized your entire life by people around you or by the media. Looking at the media, it seems that it is perfectly normal to be worn out by 45. Most of us have been brainwashed to think “we are too old”.
Get rid of the “I’m too old” excuse
The « I’m too old » excuse is one of the most disempowering belief I know of. I’ve never seen highly successful people complaining about being too old.
You won’t believe what people in their 40s tell me all the time. It seems to me that they are already in their 70s or 80s. They would tell me they are too old to learn a foreign language, to start a business, or to get some education. “It’s too late” as they say. Really?
Nowadays, in most of the countries around the world, the life expectation is around 70 and for developed countries around 80.
If you are 45 today, you still have 25 to 35 years to live on average. I guarantee you that in 25 years you can do a lot of things. You can start something from scratch and become an expert at it. You can learn to speak several languages fluently or you can create your start-up company among other things
These people will show you how young you are
The following examples will show you that you might not be as old as you think.
- Fauja Singh: He is a centenarian marathon runner. If it is possible for a centenarian to run a marathon, you might want to reconsider what is possible at your age.
- Jim Morris : Jim is a 78 year-old body builder who turn vegetarian at 50 and vegan at 65 and look surprisingly healthy. Jim Morris shows you that you can be healthy and active, and even practice body building in your 70s. A healthy diet is the key.
In one of my videos I actually recommend people to choose how long they want to live. Indeed, I believe that we are greatly responsible for our health and I’m convinced that we definitely have our say when it comes to the age until which we would like to live. We also know that people who strongly believe that they will overcome diseases like cancer are actually more likely to survive. For that reason I believe that it is important to send a clear message to our subconscious mind by deciding how long we want to live right now rather than just hoping we live a long and healthy life.
Some studies show that people who have a positive view about aging live on average 7.5 longer that people having a negative view of aging. So why not change your perception of aging right now? Especially when you know that, as we get older we generally become happier! Isn’t something to be optimistic about?
Being old or young is largely a mindset. Change your mindset and things will start changing for you. It is time for you to stop hoping and start choosing to live a long and healthy life. Why not drop that excuse “I’m too old” and start doing what you always dreamed of doing. Why not command your subconscious mind to assist you in that quest, and decide today how long you would like to live?
Let me give you another piece of information to encourage you to take responsibility for the way you age and start adopting a new and more empowering belief.
Our Brain is Plastic
It’s all plastic. You name the ability and you can drive improvement out of it independent of age. – Michael Merzenich, neuroscientist
Not only does our brain shape us, but we can actually shape our brain. – Barbara Arrowsmith-Young, creator of Arrowsmith School
It is true that when we enter our forties, our cognitive abilities tend to decline. However, does it have to be that way? What if I tell you that you could improve your neurological abilities at any age? What if I tell you that you could retrain your brain to maintain your memory or restore your reaction time and your listening abilities to name a few?
For hundred of years, we thought that our brain was fixed and couldn’t be changed. However, we know now that it is not the case; actually our brain is surprisingly plastic. Let me give you an example.
Barbara Arrowsmith-Young was a child with learning disabilities. She was told that she will never learn as other children and would have to learn to live with her limitations. She encountered a lot of challenges in her daily life (see her TED Talk: The Woman Who Changed Her Brain). She couldn’t tell the time, she had spatial problems and couldn’t read a map and would get lost even in her friend’s house. She could understand concrete things but was unable to make sense of concepts, ideas or relationships (like cause and effect). For instance, she couldn’t make sense of philosophical books. Neither could she understand irony and jokes so that she had to learn to laugh when other people did.
She was so depressed that she tried to commit suicide. However, she then found out the work of well-known psychologists doing experiment on rats. Experiments show that when scientist stimulated the brain of rats, physiological changes occurred in their brain. Believing that it would also be the case for humans, she went on designing various exercises to train our brain and was able to change her brain little by little until she fully recovered.
Why does it matter?
What does it have to do with aging? The fact is that, our brain is plastic and we can retrain it to improve our abilities and even cure some disabilities regardless of our age.
In reality, as we get older, we live more and more on automatic pilot and we stop stretching and growing. As a result, our cognitive abilities start to decrease. The good new is that, as crazy as it sounds, yes, it can be reversed!
Here are some of the things that are possible by training your brain (at any age)
With training, your brain can:
- Recover the machinery that controls learning
- Restore the processess known that control growth, healing.
- Change its chemistry to be like that of a young brain
- Recover its ability to operate in a noisy environment
- Recover its power of prediction
- Restor its ability to remember
- Re-strenghtened its immune response
To learn more watch How brain plasticity can change your life
Neuroscientists started designing exercises that we can use to maintain our brain abilities. You can check some of these exercises for free on BrainHQ.com
It is time for you to change your mindset. Start by refusing to say « I’m too old » again. Then, decide how long you want to live. Finally, start improving your diet and make sure you do some kind of exercises on a regular basis.
Being old is a mindset!
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