by George Goldtrap
If you are lucky you are going to get old. When you consider the alternative, it’s not a bad deal. With the right attitude, old age can be fun. My friend Art Linkletter says ‘Old age is not for sissies’ and he is 100 percent correct. Old age can be rough for some folks, and I’m sympathetic with that, but… others bring their troubles on themselves and I have little time for that. So you’re old! Get over it! No wait… I don’t mean that… just adapt, make the necessary changes, accept the things you can’t change, and enjoy the rest of your life. That will be better for you and for the folks around you.
How to avoid pitfalls:
Be positive and happy. Nobody likes a grouch. Grouches are no fun. Old grouches make everybody around miserable. What is a grouch? That’s easy. Grouches don’t like anything or anybody. They seldom smile. They are quick to tell you their problems and they certainly have no interest in yours. A grouch’s bed only has one side… the wrong side. Don’t be a grouch.
Appreciate children and youth. Babies are beautiful… I know. I started out as a child and I enjoyed every day of it. Their cry of discomfort or fear is far out-weighed by their smile of joy, surprise, or love. When you see an unhappy baby, smile at him or her. Wink… blow’em a kiss… offer a toy or a moment of attention.
Today’s young people, (teens), are no different from yesterday’s. A few are lazy, sassy, and disrespectful. Most are not. Most are ambitious, courteous, and respectful. Yes, they are still youthful… and we all know that ‘brains do not come with the set’… but that’s where you come in. Most young people will react to the environment you establish.
Appreciate America. Things do change. Government changes. The pendulum still swings both directions. If you don’t like what you see or experience, get involved. Work for change. Align yourself with an activist group. Write and submit editorials. Speak out. But… don’t just gripe, gripe, gripe. Anyone can tell you it gets old… fast. It is boring and ineffective. Everyday my e-mail box is packed with g-mail, or gripemail. Some of it is just plain slanderous. So much of it is wrong. Sending out that kind of junk is inexcusable… no different from gossiping, or belittling others. It is wearing out my delete button. I have little time or patience for it. If you can point out something that needs changing, and can document it… fine… but don’t send just plain mean, hateful, biased, junk. Grow up. Vote. America, love it or leave it… but don’t belittle it.
Stay positive and avoid complaining about aches and pains. It’s not that I don’t care… but yours are not unique. The aches and pains of age are universal. You are not special. If I listen to your ailments, you must listen to mine, and being a wordsmith, I can go on for hours. You don’t want that.
Rewards and cost are relative. Yes things used to be much cheaper, I know that. I also know that wages were $60 a week and that gas was 15.9 and that mortgages were 3 percent. The value of money is relative. You earn more, cost goes up. Free enterprise is not perfect but it is way ahead of whatever is in second place.
Appreciate progress. ‘They don’t mak’em like they used to’ some will say. Right! Thank goodness. Most items are far superior. Not everything… but check out the average person’s standard of living and the USA is by far an improvement over yesterday.
Associate with positive and happy people. The people that are attracted to you will most likely be like you. You can’t reconcile a Fuss Budget. Stay away from complainers.
Smile. That sounds so simplistic but it is so powerful. I know an individual that complains constantly. This individual looks at me with a frowning mouth. I avoid this person and look for smiling faces.
Oh I know the pitfalls of promoting a positive mental attitude. You’ll be accused of fairytale thinking, being unrealistic, and of having your head in the sand. Pay that no mind. Happy people live longer, are healthier, and more productive.
No… old age is not for sissies… and you won’t survive it forever. One out of one, dies. Wouldn’t it be better to enjoy life while you are here and wouldn’t it be better to leave a group of happy ‘mourners’ when you go?
Some bring joy into a room when they enter. Some when they leave.