Fear will make you old before your time . . . never stop growing and you’ll never grow old . . . maturity without fear is a wonderful time to be alive . . . thoughts that will keep you feeling and acting young as long as you live.
Here are some ideas that will help you look forward to tomorrow:
1. The person in love never feels old.
The older we grow the more we need to give and to receive love. Keep your love light burning – stay in love.
2. Make yourself necessary and welcome to others.
Tell yourself: “God and my neighbor have need of me. And I am loved and secure and free.” Then work at it.
3. Never ask for pity.
Pity is destructive and deepens fear. Seek to be worthy of admiration. To be admired is to be encouraged.
4. Don’t worry about the future of the younger generation.
Tomorrow’s world will be better than it is today. We are ungrateful and uncooperative guests of God if we doubt tomorrow.
5. Love will do more for you than money.
Money alone cannot give you a sense of security and help in your old age. It takes love put to work to do that. If this were not true there would not be a hospital or any other charity organization in existence. I have known older people who had plenty of money but no love to give and so received no love and who fared badly at the hands of paid helpers. But love will see you through. The person who is sweet, cheerful, loving, grateful, interested in others will never lack for tender, loving care.
6. Serenity keeps you young.
Even old faces are beautiful if they are serene. For serenity expresses God. Serenity is a result of being free from all fear, and so from all tension, hate, resentments, feelings of injustice and inferiority. Get rid of hurry, worry, fuss and fret. These make you old. Serenity comes from good desires and desires fulfilled, and cannot come merely from quitting, from resignation. Serenity is constructive, happy. Being resigned is destructive because it is giving in to fear.
7. Keep on loving life as well as people and yourself.
A retired school teacher, greatly loved by all who knew her and cared for tenderly in her old age, once wrote me, “I am still kicking and ticking,” when she was ninety-five.
8. Develop new skills and meet new people.
Dr. James A. Peterson, associate professor of sociology at the University of Southern California, said that the factor of age is only incidental to the problems encountered at retirement. He said it depended upon the individual’s attitude and that everything can come to a seeming end, even at forty. He advises enlargement of human contacts and ways to be useful.
I agree with Dr. Peterson. And, I would add, the TV chair and a desire to be merely entertained is deplorable because destructive. We are born doers. To sit down on the side lines of life is to increase fear and discontent. Be a doer.
9. Never stop growing and you’ll never grow old.
Louis Kuplan of the International Association of Gerontology said that good health in an older person has a very definite relationship with learning. So never stop developing your mind.
10. Be a good listener.
The ministry of listening is fitted to old age. Everyone needs to be heard. Especially the young.
11. Eat of the fruit of the tree of life and stay forever young.
The fruit of the tree of life is high faith – three-phrase faith in God, neighbor and self. Always expect the best. If an unpleasant or threatening situation arises, use the power of your word to declare boldly “only good can come out of this!”
12. Feed your spirit daily.
Read your Bible. Read the Christian message in the New Testament. Read the great promises and meditate upon the truth in the Psalms.
Do these things and you will be happy in your later years.
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* “Ageing is a global issue; it’s something that all societies are having to face, and it’s up there with climate change and the provision of clean water as the three greatest challenges that we have facing us in the 21st Century.”
Judith talks about her research at the Centre for Innovative Ageing, and the interdisciplinary Research Institute for Applied Social Sciences.
Judith’s work includes projects working with both business and local authorities, engineers and scientists. One theme, ‘Environments of Ageing’, looks at how changes to public space can affect older people, and the steps that can be taken to limit those effects.
“There are lots of positive about ageing… Older people contribute enormously to the economy and to society.”
Judith Phillips, Professor of Gerontology, Swansea University