Back when I turned 21, I had reached the legal age for everything that was legal. I thought to myself, there isn’t really anything else to age for so why not stay 21.
It was a silly notion. But I think I was somewhat serious.
As the years passed I kept that mindset. I wasn’t counting the years past twenty-one. I was twenty-one.
Occasionally, my body would rudely remind me that several years had passed but I would ignore the thought. I still thought of myself as twenty-one. I embraced a youthful mindset. I snatched at quotes that verbalized that line of thinking.
Margaret Meade said, “I was wise enough to never grow up while fooling most people into believing I had.”
I am pretty sure I didn’t really fool anyone. But me. I somehow have believed that I am younger. I know this is so because occasionally I am shocked when I catch my reflection in the mirror.
But I am convinced that I am happier and maybe a bit younger because of this mindset.
I think there are other attitudes that can keep us youngish. Gratitude for instance. Gratitude lifts our spirits. How can that not keep us young?
I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder. G.K. Chesterton
Aging well truly is never about longevity but about the amount of life we put in our years.
If you count all your assets, you always show a profit. Robert Quillen
Generosity is another youth inspiring mindset. I have observed how much people enjoy giving by their reluctance to receive. We would much rather give than receive wouldn’t we? As we are blessed by our giving to others the pains of aging fade.
The heart that gives, gathers. Tao Te Ching
I am not sure that one can go back and reclaim youth by deciding to be twenty-one again. But I am sure that it is never too late to grow in gratitude and generosity.
[Want an opportunity to be generous and maybe slow down your aging? Take me up on my request for a funny birthday card and a donation to the Arkansas Valley Pregnancy Center. Send me the card and the check to AVPC at AVPC, POB 249, La Junta, CO 81050. There are prizes for generous gifts of $25, $50, $70 and $100. You’ll be grateful you did.]