I’ve been going to a lot of 80 birthday celebrations this month. My mother in-law turns 80 today and last week we went to a regal 80th birthday bash complete with champagne toasts, a dance floor and an over-the-top dinner. Evidently 80 the new 70. As I approach “middle-age” and I’m fretting over the loss of my youth, I’m reminded age is only a number and there is so much to embrace as I grow. Here are five life lessons from 80 year-olds.
Friendship is key to a happy and long life.
My MIL still has many friends from third grade. I can barely keep up with my next door neighbors, but she’s managed to keep in touch with friends since third grade. Amazing!! They still go to lunch, go shopping and talk on the phone with one another. With this said I’m so incredibly thankful for all of my friends, new and old. They keep me grounded, put life into perspective, dance, cry and laugh with me. Life is better spent with others who bring you up and care about you.
The five Ws.
This advice came to me from a 90 year-old who sat next to me in the Ritz-Carlton lobby one day.
Water. Drink plenty of water. I really, really try to do this daily. It’s a struggle, but god willing, one day I’ll get my recommended amount.
Worship. Have faith and believe in a power greater than yourself.
Walk. I love to walk. I don’t do enough of it. Big cities are my jam because I get to walk everywhere. And, shh…don’t tell anyone, some days I like to walk more than I like to run.
Wine. This woman had me at wine. She drinks one glass of red wine a day. There are many benefits of drinking a glass of red wine and she’s proof it’s true.
Work. This lady still works for her family’s hospitality business daily. I shouldn’t have a problem with working given the rate I’m going, I’ll be working until I’m 90, but I love my job and when you are doing what you love it isn’t called work.
Take chances and don’t blink.
Anyone else love that country song “Don’t Blink, “life goes faster than you think” or perhaps Luke Bryan’s “Fast.” “60 seconds feel more like 30…” In my mind I was just a teenager going off to college, I got married yesterday and Lady Elle was just born. My MIL said she turned 40 yesterday in her mind. It goes way to fast. Take chances, they may never present themselves again. Her third-grade classmate started his own steel company as a young adult-a huge risk after the depression. He just retired a millionaire. I’m not the best at taking chances or living in the moment but I’m going to try instead of worrying about the past or being anxious about the future. I’ll also learn to put my phone down and savor every moment with Lady Elle.
Attitude is everything.
Life isn’t always easy or fair, but your attitude in handling what’s given to you can make or break you. Many 80’s old’s have experienced the good and bad in life. They’ve lived through the death of loved ones, many of them their own children. While they’ve most certainly made mistakes, they didn’t let them define them. A positive outlook can get you much further than money or prestige.
Celebrate every moment.
Remember to dance the dance, forgive others and move on, life is too short to waste another minute on someone who has done you wrong. There will be plenty more who treat you right.
Now excuse me as we go celebrate my MIL’s 80th birthday. Cheers!
Do you have any nuggets of wisdom to share?