One thing we learn from spending time with older folks is how NOT to live!
We are well aware that we are not like most people and our views on life are probably very different, but is it not weird that so many people happily follow the path of many others? All with similar jobs, houses, cars, clothes...all influenced by something they’ve seen on TV or read in a magazine. Groups of similar aged people all wanting the same; conforming to what they feel is expected of them without question.
We can only imagine what it is like to feel the sort pressure that would make someone want what others have and slipping into a strange world where everyone is the same. We only catch glimpses of these lives and from where we are standing the results are not looking good.
There are many lists out there for improving lives with recommendations for happy and healthy retirements; most of them are quite twee and superficial, so we thought people need to know what not to do!!!
Without further ado here is our top 10 of DON’T DOs
- Don't Retire - Quit working for corporations before you start to become obsessed about pensions and the gap you will need to fill. Instead, work for yourself and do something you enjoy and feel passionate about, something which has no age limit and that will make you happy every day.
- Don't View TV Or Mainstream Media - Stop absorbing negativity. TV, radio and newspapers will keep you in a state of fear and misery. Find positive news outlets and take educational courses to broaden your knowledge.
- Don't Stick With Your Own Age Group - Make sure you surround yourself with friends of all ages, especially younger people. This one thing will change your life for the better. It is very easy to get stuck in one time period, so having younger friends may lead you to opportunities you may not have previously considered. Be prepared to have your views challenged, open your mind to learning something new and enjoy being motivated.
- Don't Enter Beige World - It is very easy to slip into buying "age appropriate" clothing and to visit the same shops as everyone else your age. Don't do it! If you have money - be an individual and find yourself a young designer who can make you some wonderfully unique garments or if you prefer not to spend much on clothes - shop at charity stores. Be bold and colourful or dark and different. Most importantly, be yourself!
- Don't Listen To The Same Old Music - Break the habit of being stuck in a musical past; you've heard it a million times now - change the record! There is a world of new music to discover and genres you may not of heard of. Remember, your favourite records were new once.
- Don't Grow Old In A Home That No Longer Suits Your Needs - You must not let yourself fall into the trap of complacency with your surroundings. Before your home becomes a burden - move! Don't procrastinate, get rid of stuff you no longer use or that no longer brings you joy. Your house is full of useless shit. Don't leave it for your kids/relatives/friends to sort out - that's selfish thinking. Living simpler doesn't mean rejecting comfort; it does mean that you will remove the shackles of responsibility in maintaining a property that has outlived it's purpose.
- Don't focus On Your Ailments - You will attract more of what you don't want. Place your attention upon what you can do and seek help to discover ways to attain good health. Don't rely on big pharma, learn about food, nutrition and alternative therapies. Avoid strenuous exercise that can ruin your skeletal health and instead, take a more gentle approach - walk, swim, take up Yoga, Tai Chi or Tibetan Rites.
- Don't Compromise on Food - Always make food your top priority, eat healthily and never pass up an opportunity to try new dishes. Learn to cook, if you have never done so before and prepare simple, colourful and well-balanced meals. Nutrition is the key to good health and it's never too late to change your diet.
- Don't Be Fooled Into Thinking That You Need To Keep Busy - Filling your time with crosswords, puzzles and extra responsibilities will not save you from the onset of dementia. Being idle and having quiet moments are far more beneficial. Learn the art of slowing down...whatever your age. Decluttering your living space will encourage you to thrive and be more creative, by unburdening your mind from the distractions of unnecessary material objects.
- Don't Fall Into Habitual Patterns - Routine causes stagnation and apathy, so shake things up! It's good to be disciplined, but it's also empowering to change your behaviour and sometimes be spontaneous. Connect with nature, get outside when it's nice weather and hibernate during the winter months. Start each day differently; meditate, read something inspirational, keep a journal with a daily gratitude list. Sing, dance and laugh...lots!