Much like the second act in a play or later chapters in a great book, the second half of your life can be where the pleasant surprises, big reveals, and fitting together of pieces happens.
Here are ten tips to make aging the great adventure that it has the potential to be.
1. Keep moving.
Move it or lose it, as the saying goes. The right balance of cardio and stretching will keep your heart healthy, your energy levels high, and your body supple and flexible for as long as possible. Exercise also provides the added benefit of releasing feel-good hormones that are proven to be more effective than the leading prescription anti-depressants on the market.
2. Start a meditation practice.
The term “meditation” might be intimidating but the practice doesn’t have to be overly complicated, and the benefits are tremendous. Spending a few minutes each day with our eyes closed, and our focus on our breath can go a long way in helping us to release worry, negative memories, and bring us into the lovely present moment.
3. Eat like you mean it.
Eating quality food can improve the quality of our lives immensely. The old saying “you are what you eat” is a more accurate statement than many of us have realized. When we eat fresh, alive foods, we feel fresh and alive. When we eat heavy, preserved food, we feel just that way— massive and preserved. It’s not too late to take a good look at your diet and see where there might be room for improvement.
4. Connect with people you love.
Good relationships are proven to be a critical difference between happy and unhappy people. Make it a point to connect with someone you love every day. And while it might be tempting to scroll your loved one’s Facebook page, it’s better to connect more directly by making a phone call, writing a letter, or paying an in-person visit.
5. Let it go.
Worry and regret are heavy emotional baggage that can make our lives feel dull and hard. And, carrying them doesn’t tend to change anything. Choose to release negative emotions and look at the present and future with hope and positivity. That simple decision will help the second act of life be lighter and brighter.
6. Grow a garden.
Gardening is a rewarding hobby that you may not have had time to try when you were busy working and raising your family. When you spend time in your garden, you absorb sunlight, connect with nature, get some physical activity, and breathe fresh air. These are all vital parts of physical, mental and emotional well-being.
7. Dress your age.
Growing older is no excuse to lose your sense of fashion. The clothing we wear is scientifically proven to affect the way we feel. Embrace the loss of self-consciousness that many of us experience in our young adult lives and dress boldly and beautifully. Use your clothing and accessories as a way to express yourself and watch how it adds zip to your step.
8. Make a difference.
People often lose their sense of purpose when they retire from their jobs. And the loss of a sense of purpose can lead to depression and aimlessness. Combat this by joining a board of directors, starting a winter coat drive, or mentoring a neighborhood kid. The sense of purpose you get from these activities has the potential to be even more significant than the one you may have experience in your career.
9. Embrace technology and share what you know.
With the passing of years, you have accumulated an invaluable amount of experience. Considering sharing your wisdom with younger generations in a way that they are most likely to hear it—through technology. A blog, an Instagram page, or a YouTube video sharing thing you’ve learned throughout a lifetime would be a beautiful gift to the world. Technology can be daunting, but your capacity to learn new things is immense and giving these platforms a try is sure to be worth the effort.
10. Do something new.
It’s never too late to do the thing you always meant to do. Write a book, take a class, visit a faraway land—new, novel experiences will help keep the spark alive inside of you and make life fun.
Caryl Anne Crowne is a contributing writer and media specialist for Aveanna Healthcare. She often produces content for a variety of health blogs.
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