By Chris Parnham.
I turned 50 this year – quite a milestone – and even though I try my very best, I simply cannot stop the physical effects of aging… or can I?
Science tells us that aging is achieved by a series of diverse biochemical procedures in the body that persuade it, both internally and externally to deteriorate over time, affecting the wellbeing, wellness and physical appearance of an aging person. Anti-aging involves procedures and medication intentional to delay, stop or retard the aging process.
A staggering amount of money is spent on anti-aging. According to Reuters the Global Anti-Aging Market was worth $42 billion last year and is estimated to continue growing at 5% every year, dwarfing even the most ambitious of global economies.
I must admit that I contribute in no small part to this colossal sum, but mostly I avoid getting old by adopting a lesson from the grave – RIP
What exactly are the defining principles of youth, and do they have to be the exclusive property of the young?
Youth could be evidenced by a healthy appetite for experimentation, a bravery that defies logic and absolutely no fear of failure. Change is embraced for the sake of change, even when there is no need for it, and things are never left un-questioned, even when the going is good. Every act is driven by hunger and passion.
As we get older, we get complacent and comfortable. We become happier with our lot, so we don’t try so hard to change it. We start to settle into our lives. This means we slow down… we age.
When we are young, fuelled with passion, ambition and goals, we power through life, crashing through frightening challenges because we have less to lose, and everything to gain. This keeps us young, filled with drive and passion, and it keeps us moving.
Companies are the same. Start-ups take lots of risks, grow rapidly, failing a few times along the way, but always staying focused on future success. Older companies become risk averse, large and wieldy, and it’s only a matter of time before they become irrelevant or extinct.
By re-inventing passion, we can avoid the slow down, and stay forever young. Through our 20s, 30s and 40s, our goals are usually about career, family and love.
So, by the time we get into our second act, our 50s, we need to need to make an honest assessment…
Did we achieve these goals?
Did we get the career, the home, the family and the lifestyle we strived for, or did we fall short?
If we fell short, then there is still time to re-invent the same goals and get what we wanted all those years ago. Don’t settle for a job that’s OK. Get a great one. Don’t settle for a partner who doesn’t make you feel like you’re the most amazing person in the world. Swipe left and get a better one.
And if we did achieve all our goals, now settling into a very comfortable life, and if we don’t want to accept the inevitable slow-down, it’s time to set new goals. Re-invent our lives for the second and third acts to make sure we have exciting prospects to look forward to, and to keep us young.
Re-inventing ourselves and our future is the only sure-fire way to stay fresh, engaged, motivated, and young.
I was inspired to write this blog as I watched Cher perform at London’s O2, in her third farewell tour.
At the age of 73, and dressed in a black studded cat-suit, she marched on to stage and screamed at the audience; “What is your granny doing tonight?”…