Attitude is everything when it comes to getting older. If you grew up in an era where “old age” happened when a person reached the age of 50 years, you will already feel you have arrived at old age upon your fiftieth birthday.
You tend to turn down opportunities for physical and social activity, increase the times you are sedentary and stop challenging your cognitive mind. When this happens, you truly do lose what you don’t use and you physically and emotionally age much faster than those who maintain physical, cognitive, and social activities well into the age where many others feel just too old to participate in these activities.
How do you get into the mindset of feeling young again?
It’s probably never too late to do this. You first need to recognize that age is just a number and that there are people much older than you who are doing things you may consider “too old” for them without difficulty. Look at people who seem and look younger than their years would otherwise say.
You will probably find that your answer is content when you have been engaging in an activity that you enjoy or you have just enjoyed a delicious meal, a great time with friends, or something of a similar happiness boost. We tend to savor those types of feelings simply because we are unsettled and restless as a whole. We tend to long for something in life that perhaps we just can't seem to grasp.
Satisfaction is simply being happy with your life. It doesn't just exist in a moment, rather it encompasses your past, present, future, and when you look at the big picture.
What is happiness?
First of all, happiness refers to what you can get from others and your environment. In other words, you're happy when your material and emotional needs are fulfilled.
Take Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. Outdated or not, it gives us an idea of what people need to be happy and the importance of each of those areas in our lives - from basic biological needs like food and shelter to more elevated needs like self-development and creativity.
However, fulfilling our needs doesn't always make us happy. And in many cases, that comes in direct conflict with the happiness we seek. For example, a job that covers our basic needs for food, shelter, and security could be getting in the way of your need for creativity, flexibility, and freedom.
On top of that, we tend to think of happiness as static, as something you either have or don't. However, this isn't the case, at all. Instead, happiness is fluid and fleeting.
Here are some of the signs you are doing too much:
You’re Mentally and Physically Exhausted
Being a hard worker is admirable but you want to give yourself time to recover and recuperate. If you can no longer function then you’ve gone too far and have done too much. Rick Hanson, Ph.D., a psychologist, Senior Fellow of the Greater Good Science Center at UC-Berkeley, and New York Times best-selling author says, “Most of a person’s tasks, even all of them, could be individually rewarding and done for a good purpose, but taken as a whole they’re often too much. It’s certainly gotten this way for me."
This is interesting and maybe a way we have never thought of our similar circumstances. Perhaps it's time to re-think our situation and do something else like take a vacation.
Herb Sennett writes about life and how to enjoy it more.