• Hey Seniors, Good News: Age is a State of Mind

    Hey Seniors, Good News: Age is a State of Mind

Odds are, you have heard some variation of the old adage “age is a state of mind.” And it turns out that it might be true and believing it can actually help you age better. Your preconceived notions about age can have a direct influence on your actions and mental wellbeing. Research shows that your state of mind is not something that naturally deteriorates with age but is actually something you might have more control over than previously thought.

To learn about the abilities you need to age on your terms, check out this article

Why Age is a State of Mind

There is a connection between your mental health and your attitude about aging gracefully. According to this report, one study examined a group of older adults who were taken to a significant place of their youth and asked to imagine they were their younger selves. Among findings like talking about past experiences in the present tense, when compared to the control group, those asked to change their perceptions experienced improved dexterity, physical appearance, and posture. Surprisingly, even their eyesight improved. This study has been repeated and yielded the same results.

This leads researchers to believe that mental attitudes towards age have a direct impact on the way people live as they grow older. Yet another study found that people who hold more positive attitudes about their own aging lived about 7.6 years longer than people with more negative views. This increased longevity continued even when researchers controlled other relevant factors. For example, later studies created control groups and found that memory and hearing loss was associated with negative outlooks.

Studies demonstrate that your body believes what your minds tell it. Proving that mental attitudes affect your physical and emotional wellbeing at all ages. However, the influence of these attitudes becomes more pronounced the older we get. Research finds that the happiest and healthiest people in the elderly community are often those who don’t dwell too much on their age and just live their lives. They tend to focus on what they can do rather than what their age might limit them to.

The Right State of Mind

As the research above demonstrates, maintaining the right state of mind appears to be a key attribute to a long and happy life. While obvious things like genetics and healthy habits also impact your wellbeing as you age. Thus, adopting a glass-half-full attitude might make a big difference.

So, which attitudes make the biggest difference? Here are some key tips for ensuring that age is just a state of mind:

Positive Attributes of Aging

There are a lot of great things about aging you can look forward to, like emotional maturity and wisdom. This isn’t to say you should ignore the hardships that can come with aging, but rather focusing on the positive can help you age better.

Maintain a Sense of Purpose

Many older adults experience a decline in their health when they start to feel useless. Though this is common in many seniors, the reality is that seniors are just as valuable and have as much purpose as their younger counterparts. Though when we get older, it’s easy to lose track of what gives us purpose. Most seniors are retired and no longer have the responsibilities of work or the burdens of raising a family which are both areas from which many draw personal value. However, many aging individuals find renewed purpose in retirement when they participate in community projects or join clubs. As long as you continue to develop new skills, its easy to have a positive outlook on your continued purpose.

These studies all point to the same conclusion, aging is nothing but a state of mind. The real challenge is getting past the stereotypes about aging and truly believing in yourself.

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Confident Living is a continuing care at home membership program, focused on helping you remain active and independent as you age in your own home. We serve the greater Cincinnati area. For more information, contact us online or call (513) 719-3522.