What Stays the Same? The Tried-and-True Strategies to Successful Aging: Join the Livingto100.Club
Many large companies are always hunting for the next big breakthrough, the new software or hardware that will change their systems, or the new operations will keep them on the cutting edge for their customers. The chief executive at Amazon, Jeff Bezos, however, has always taken the opposite position: what things will not change in the next 10 years – what will be steady and predictable? The answer that he and his top managers arrived at, to put it simply, is that making things easy for customers will always be at the top of the customers’ wish list. Everything revolves around this core principle at Amazon: provide the most convenience and the least friction possible for its customers, no matter what. That will not change. (See book reference below.)
Here at the Living to 100 Club, the focus is on successful aging, longevity, and managing setbacks. Our blogs have one theme woven throughout. Whether the topic is on laughter, increasing exercise levels, or working beyond retirement age, the emphasis is always on coping with whatever struggle comes our way, and facing the future with a positive mindset. Even on our live radio show, each of our guests contributes to this same perspective: sharing information that will help our audience take control of our future, take the right precautions and manage your setbacks, or learn to be better caregivers.
All of this brings me to the point of this blog. New information about aging successfully and facing our advancing years with a positive outlook is all around us. But we already know what works. Here are the strategies, packaged a little differently:
- Everything is relative; if we only look for those who are healthier than us, we learn that we can also find those who are sicker and more debilitated than we are. Or wealthier, or prettier, and we can always find those less so. Find the positive wherever we look; comparisons are a trap.
- Be grateful for what we have. When it comes to material possessions, Norman Cousins had a memorable line, “We can never have enough of what we don’t need.” Focusing on what we don’t have, the disappointments, or the failures prevents us from seeing the whole picture, as if we are wearing blinders. With blinders on, we have no peripheral vision and all we see is what’s directly in front of us: loss, disappointment, and all that has gone wrong. Only when we remove the blinders can we see the whole picture – what’s all around us – what we have as well as what we don’t have.
- Regular physical activity and movement are central ingredients to aging successfully. Research shows us time and again how exercise keeps us at our fittest. See the past blogs on taking up exercise at any time, spending time outdoors, or living in the Blue Zones, among others for quick references.
- Take time for rest and relaxation, follow good stress reduction approaches like meditation, and get enough sleep.
- Remain connected to and engaged with family and friends. We should also think about expanding our circle of friends by associating with those who are younger than we are. Our closest group of life-long friends has a way of shrinking over time.
- Diet is central. More whole-plant foods, and less meat. Alcohol in moderation.
- Look for solutions but allow a measure of acceptance when there are none to be found. I like what Steven Grundy calls a pessimistic optimism: shrug our shoulders at the inevitable bad things that happen and celebrate the positives that do happen.
- Stay committed to a purpose, something that has meaning and brings a sense of enjoyment. Whether it is religious or spiritual belief, connection to a community, or just a solo passion, hold on to something that is purposeful in our lives.
Of course, this bullet list is but one perspective, and there are many other perspectives. But, as we psychologists like to say, process is more important than content. Choosing to adopt any strategies is more important than which ones we adopt.
This Weeks' Recommendations
The Living to 100 Club, LLC, is an Amazon Affiliate; sales commissions accrue to the Company when recommended Amazon products are purchased by our readers. These products target healthy lifestyles, information on successful aging, and aid to caregivers.
Think Like Amazon “What would Jeff do?” Since leaving Amazon to advise start-ups and corporations, John Rossman has been asked this question countless times by executives who want to know “the secret” behind Amazon’s historic success. In this step-by-step guide, he provides 50 ½ answers drawn from his experience as an Amazon executive.
The Longevity Paradox From the author of the New York Times bestseller The Plant Paradox comes a groundbreaking plan for living a long, healthy, happy life.
The Blue Zones: 9 Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who've Lived the Longest Bestselling author, longevity expert, and National Geographic Explorer Dan Buettner reports on health, fitness, diet, and aging, drawing on his research from extraordinarily long-lived communities--Blue Zones--around the globe.
Weekly Radio Talk Show
The Living to 100 Club is all about staying positive as we age. Our blog articles and our new weekly live Radio Show emphasize longevity, successful aging, risk management, and handling setbacks whenever they occur. Be sure to tune in to our weekly live Radio Talk Show on VoiceAmericaHealth, every Friday at 2pm Pacific, with your Host, Dr. Joe Casciani.
Missed the live event? Recordings of all episodes can be accessed on the Club website. Scroll down on the audio player and select “Episode Listing” to display the selections. And now, you can see the schedule of upcoming guests - take a look.
Handbook for Club Members
Be sure to see the Club's Handbook, 9 Principles for a Positive Frame of Mind, available for free download on the Living to 100 Club website. This Handbook is our guide to creating and maintaining this positive frame of mind. The principles help the reader examine our usual thinking patterns about aging and encourage us to consider a different perspective on what we can accomplish and what we can expect of ourselves. This is no time to sit back and muse “what will be will be” – it’s time to re-define ourselves as strong and capable, and to shape our future as much as we can.