Embracing Aging in An Anti-Aging Climate

We hear all the time about new products and lifestyle changes that promise anti-aging benefits but perhaps what we should be focused on is what can we do that is pro-aging instead.   We are all getting older, but should that be such a negatively-charged fact?  What if instead of thinking about aging as something to be fought against, it was a process to be embraced and enhanced?

You may have noticed women of the younger generation are intentionally dyeing their hair gray and even grandma’s shade of lavender or blue and it might look cute with a young face but the irony is that everyone I know over the age of 40 is frantically trying to cover their silver strands and hide every wrinkle with increasingly complex beauty routines.

Instead of focusing on the superficial signs of aging which our society is overwhelmingly drawn to, maybe 2016 could be the year of aging not just well but enthusiastically.  For me this means living a simpler and more rewarding life filled with great food, good friends, more activity and less concern about how I am measuring up against the ticking clock (and my peers).

Women are our own worst enemies in this regard; we do judge each other and when someone cuts their hair short and lets it go grey, we whisper – “Oh, she’s given up.”   We are scornful of people who are body-shaming others for their size and shape but we do it to ourselves each day.  Aging isn’t shameful. It’s a privilege.

My mother never worried about being anything other than who she was.  Never died her hair or had cosmetic procedures.  A little red lippy and a dab of pressed powder was all she needed to face the day.  And she was beautiful.  Her joy from seeing her children and grandchildren, visiting with friends or sharing the story of her newest book made her vibrant in a way nothing else can.  You don’t have to age gracefully and take it all in stride, but just like raising children, older people may want to pick their battles.   Any grandchild will tell you that a grandma who digs in the dirt with them is way cooler than one worried about messing up their manicure.