Loving Longevity

The great advantage of your second birth—at age 50 and older—is that you can plan ahead. Your first birth was thrown at you, complete with total strangers who turned out to be your parents, an awkward, unformed body that had to be trained to perform the simplest tasks, and a bewildering world of chaotic sights and sounds your brain had to mold into something that made sense.

Fired up by the possibilities of planning a whole new lifetime, I decided to take the opportunity seriously. I set aside all the stereotypes of old age that clutter the mind and approached my second birth with a wish list. What would I want should I live to be 100? Immediately the following desires came to mind:

  • I want to survive even longer, if possible.
  • I want to remain healthy.
  • I want a clear, alert mind.
  • I want to be active.
  • I want to have achieved wisdom.

As soon as I wrote down these desires, a surprising thing happened—they all seemed within my reach. I know what to do to be healthy today, and I can live tomorrow the same way. I’ve always been active, so why fear that I’ll sink into a chair one day, never to get up again?

And psychologists are beginning to verify that human development extends into old age through higher states of awareness, that decline in the brain’s physical structure with age may be offset by new mental accomplishments.

With this simple list I had turned survival from a threat into a desirable goal, because on my list were things I truly wanted.

Adapted from Ageless Body, Timeless Mind, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2007).

40 comments

heather g.
heather g.3 years ago

The clearest, simplest goals !
I can't think of better ones........

Winn Adams
Winnie Adams3 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

Loo Samantha
Loo sam3 years ago

noted

Kathleen Cazander

Thank you.

federico bortoletto

Grazie per l'articolo.

federico bortoletto

Grazie per l'articolo.

Shar F.
Sharon F.3 years ago

It is important to eat healthy, ie fruits and veggies and get plenty of exercise and sleep.
Gardening is good. Put your milk, juice, catsup, mustard etc in glass (rather than plastic containers) as soon as it gets to your kitchen. What do you think is making the plastic mustard container yellow and the catsup container red??

Go easy on cosmetics (ascertain what they are made of), avoid pop, and hazardous cleaning products. I have known or met 32 people who lived to age 90 or older (incl both parents (ages 98 and 90) and have thought a lot about how they lived.

Kirsten B.
Kirsten B.3 years ago

Nice thoughts, thanks. I've seen that my life has really been turning around since hitting 40 - and I'm really looking forward to when my 50's arrive - the midpoint of my life - to see what wonderful things I've achieved by then and what else I want to take on.
Thank you for the inspirational piece.

Kirsten B.
Kirsten B.3 years ago

Nice thoughts, thanks. I've seen that my life has really been turning around since hitting 40 - and I'm really looking forward to when my 50's arrive - the midpoint of my life - to see what wonderful things I've achieved by then and what else I want to take on.
Thank you for the inspirational piece.

Heather Marvin
Heather Marv3 years ago

It is good to re evaluate your life and what you really want in life, and then set a goal to achieve it.