Aging Mellow
(If wines can do it, so can we...right?)

True, at first glance the aging process may seem to bear little little (if any!) resemblance to a relaxing stint in a cask or barrel. All too often, in fact, hard things happen during our own "processing"not only to us, but also to those we love. Plus, even our own mirrors sometimes pile on...with unseemly glee.

Despite it all (and under the right circumstances), it does appear that we humans often develop depth, complexity, and mellowness over time just as wines do. Moreover, those qualities seem to promote a somewhat lighter and warmer approach toward life than might otherwise be our lot. How cool is that?

         Reaching Mellow

So, how do we foster that particular "morph" within ourselves? No doubt in myriad ways, although purpose, exploration, adventure, and just plain fun (PEAF for short?) do seem to advance the cause. 

Ah, but those puppies tend to wander off now and then, don't they? Perhaps only temporarily and/or only to a minor degree, or maybe they leave us feeling trapped in a (losing) poker game with the Fates. 

  Some Possible "Fixes"

During challenging times, some of us may forget how helpful it can be to talk with someone, whether that person be friend/family, therapist, clergy person, coach, etc. But if that just doesn't ring your chime, even a few simple "tweaks" may help to restore some of your joie de vivre IF you actually carry them out. 

Or, perhaps you might begin sorting out one or two more-serious things that are affecting
 your life. You know, just gird up and deal with it/them...if that's do-able under the present circumstances. Another possibility? Take some steps toward a wish or goala personal "hill" awaiting your metaphorical boots. For example, here are but a few such steps to consider: 

* Getting very, very clear about what YOU genuinely want for yourself, or perhaps really need to do
* Laying out a plausible course of action to attain or accomplish those things
* Taking a single step toward the goal(s), and then moving ahead at a pace that works for You
* Doing your best to stay out of the Boxes as you go


Alas, yes. In a nutshell, those would be attitudes, beliefs, habits, etc., that hinder our progress and/or lessen our enjoyment of life. Although they can do this at any age, such "boxes" seem to lean in during our later years. For example, the don't-get-old box thrives on such counsel as this: *Ten things no woman should do/wear after 50/60/70, etc. *Seven make-up blunders women make as they age. *Staying sexually attractive after 65: How realistic is it? *Five ways not to look like a scary hag during your later years...

Sure, with the last one I'm just horsing around, but missives (or missiles!) like those are all over the place; sometimes they even seem offered in a helpful spirit. Yet, as grownups, do we actually need Rules concerning the way we present ourselves and/or what we choose to be, do, or have (whatever our ages)? Although guidance may be useful now and then, in the end who could be better qualified than we to judge the fitness of our own behavior? Easy answer (IMHO).

  Other Common Boxes

Another treacherous box? Try procrastination, the do-it-later box, which lives to deflect us from pursuing the things we want. It can also block us from those things we may really, really need to take care of and possibly feel guilty about not having done previously. (Raising my hand here.)

When allowed, as dampening to the spirit can be the not-enough box, the maybe-losing-it box (yuuge!), the too-late/old boxes, the don't/can't/shouldn't do it boxes, the maybe I'll need/want this later (clutter) boxto name but a few of the usual suspects.

Click on any live link below for discussions about managing these and other impediments to the laid-back, jolly, and fulfilling autumn years you're now enjoying or may wish to create/maintain for yourself.

  Bottom Line?

Whether or not the box analogy works for you doesn't matter. The behavioral and thought patterns such "boxes" represent, however, may hinder you unnecessarily and perhaps also more than you realize. But if you stay alert, you can often blow right past those draggerswhether step by step or in leaps that might startle even you. 

Something else to consider is that now, possibly more than ever, the world sorely needs your experience, wisdom, and humor. No, you don't "owe" those to us, but what a gift such qualities can be...if you continue to share them.

Whatever way(s) you do choose to proceed with your life, though, please include some fun for yourself. And may the "Force" be with you throughout it all!

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