Okay, so maybe the linkage of mellow and aging seems like a stretch to some of us in the "autumn" phase of life—whether or not we're actually kicking and screaming. But consider for a moment the strong (if rarely mentioned) parallel between our lives and a developing wine: don't we, too, become more complex with age?
In my opinion, yes, particularly when our circumstances allow us to bring fun, purpose, and exploration/adventure (FPE) into our lives. It's when we go light on those things that our mellowness may retain a weaker toehold and also wear thinner as the years pass.
In fact, it can become positively threadbare during those hard times when life starts feeling more like cut-throat poker with the Fates than anything else. Perhaps you've been there and felt that yourself; if so, you know all too well what I'm talking about.
But even if you're not dueling with the Fates at the moment, why not keep going for your personal FPE just on general principles? As you do, though, try to avoid the "boxes" lurking here and there to hassle the unwary. See below...
"Exhibit A," the don't-get-old box, richly deserves whatever scorn, kicks, and blows it receives. If we let this bully gain the upper hand, for example, it makes us susceptible to such counsel as this: Ten things no woman should do/wear after 50/60/70. Seven make-up blunders women make as they age. Staying sexually attractive after 65: Just how realistic is it? Looking old can sometimes be bad for your health. Five ways not to look like a scary hag during your senior years...
Sure, I made the last one up, but messages like these are all over the place. Even when offered in a helpful spirit, such material reinforces the tedious message that we often diminish in the eyes of society as the years pass. (In case we hadn't noticed that ourselves). Do we really need reminders like that when we're trying to have a good time?
Instead, why not flush rigid and ageist rules concerning wearing apparel, or hair styles and makeup, or what's "appropriate" for a woman of a certain age to be, do, or have? We're grownups entitled to make our own choices and create our own style (among other things)...and to have a blast besides.
Another treacherous box? Try procrastination, the do-it-later box. Please stay out of this one as much as you can, for it is a Box from Hell. Plus, the more years we accumulate, the more potentially destructive it becomes if we allow it to deflect us from the things we want or that we perhaps really, really need to do.
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) box—to
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:
Whether or not the box analogy works for you doesn't matter. The behavioral and thought patterns such "boxes" represent, however, could hinder you unnecessarily (and perhaps also more than you realize). But if you stay alert, you can often blow right past those draggers—freeing yourself to make the days and years at your disposal both mellow and productive, whether step by step or in leaps that might startle even you.
So, whatever your age, why not keep going for the gusto? Isn't it hugely more fun to whoop it up, whatever that entails for you, than to mope around? Plus, the world needs your experience, wisdom, and plain old guts now more than ever, foxy lady. You can help us all by hanging in with your best game and also by staying mellow with FPE.
PS: If your particular "game" involves something you want or need to do,
even a single step counts. Ready to take one today?