Does it depress you to think about life expectancy?
No judgement here - but let's talk about the whole life expectancy narrative and how there's a much better way to think about the quality (and quantity) of your life.
Sure, considering your life expectancy from the perspective of years and quality of life can help you make necessary adjustments to your health, wellness, and perhaps your financial portfolios.
But there's more to your longevity expectations than being driven by the clock, a monthly calendar, or your number of birthdays.
It's easy to get sucked into life expectancy overwhelm at the expense of a more fulfilling perspective.
What's worse is allowing what you hear about life expectancy to write the script for what could otherwise be the better years of your life.
"The way to live a full life is to act quickly. Particularly as you grow older, it's alarmingly easy to let a year or two (or five) slip by without doing the big things you always felt like doing. - James Clear 1
It's time to flip-the-script from being life expectancy-minded to being longevity-minded
Life expectancy has much to do with a number of factors - some that might be beyond your control.
Nevertheless, you can begin to make deposits in your longevity "account" by increasing your self-awareness about improving your quality of life.
Here's what that could look like.
- Stepping away from the ageism "crowd"
- Creating and living by a personal aging "manifesto"
- Being empowered by longevity rather than defeated by what you hear or believe about life-expectancy
With those take-aways in mind, let's "flip-the-script" shall we?
Challenge the status-quo about aging
Opinions about getting older are limitless. More disouraging are the stereotypes and the rise of ageism.
And I'm talking about the more life-altering realties than the flippant (and often demeaning), "Okay, Boomer" comments you might hear on occasion.
For example, ageism occasionally manifests when you're attempting to offer what you believe to be valuable perspective to your family, co-workers, or (younger) friends. And rather than dial-in they dismiss you.
I feel ya.
It's common when you get to a "certain-age" (and between you and I, I'm not even sure what that "age" is).
But whatever your age, you might begin to feel...
Beyond those status-quo feelings about aging there's also the physical shifts that occur.
You might hear yourself or others say things like:
- "You're not as young as you used to be..."
- "You're not getting around as well you once did..."
- "We need some fresh (aka younger) perspective around here..."
You get the picture.
It's time to challenge the status-quo!
- Defy ageism by not listening to or believing all the "press" about aging. Relevance has nothing to do with age - it has everything to do with your earned experience and wisdom.
- Stop surrendering your present and future value to your past successes or failures. Life isn't over at 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90...shall I keep going?!
Change your mindset about aging
Once you take on the status-quo you're better prepared to go to work on your mindset. And the first step is shifting from life expectancy-mindedness to longevity-mindedness.
Your mindset about aging is likely the #1 thing working for you or against you at each and every birthday.
It hasn't always been that way.
Remember your teen years?
Perhaps you'd rather forget them. But one thing was certain - barring the occasional bad choice (or 10) - you had this come-hell-or-high-water attitude that you'd live forever!!
Well, you started aging. More so, you started thinking about it and listening to the pundits of the day about what it means to turn 30, 40, 50, and beyond.
Aging got a bad rap as you moved out of your teens into your 20s, your 30s, and then your 40s. Perhaps now, you're staring at 50, 60, 70 or more and you think your best years are...behind you!
There has to be a better way to age!!
Reframe your perspective with a new aging "manifesto." Create your own or use this one starting now:
"I'm (?) years old, and I know that my age is merely a number and that my age doesn't define the quality or quantity of my life - I do!"
Commit to increasing the longevity-factors in your life
The medical and pharmaceutical media-bias about aging is somewhat obvious: the older you become the more dependent (on them) you must be.
If you want to flip-the-script you must take back control of your life regarding your health and wellness - physically, mentally, and emotionally.
You are not required to follow anyone's aging agenda about those.
Sure, doctors and medicine are there...if and when you need them.
But how much better would your life be today, right now, if you decided to put some distance between yourself and your reliance on culture's aging-bias.
Disease, injury, and accidents aside, what if you could write your own "scrip" instead of seeing your physician for one?
- Prescribe yourself a consistent dose of healthier choices.
- Prescribe yourself the permission to step away from other people's negative opinions or attitudes about aging.
- Prescribe yourself the options and opportunity to pursue something new based on your life experiences and the wisdom you've earned.
Longevity and life expectancy revolve around the same axis: time. So why wait?
- Stop listening to the ageism "crowd."
- Start living by your very own personal aging "manifesto"
- Step into longevity-mindedness and out of life-expectancy mindedness
I'll allow my longevity-minded mentor, Brian Clark, to sum it up (with a lil' rockstar assistance)...
"You have the knowledge. Now you just have to take the action necessary to mirror the attitude of Gen X sage Dave Grohl: 'I'll stick around.'" 2