Benefits of Being in Your 60s
When both of my parents turned 60, I was only 24. To be honest, at the time they seemed ancient! Neither one of them exercised, to speak of, nor did they particularly watch what they ate. Both of them died from heart disease; my dad died of a heart attack at 67, while my mom died from a stroke at 86.
Now I am 61, and I think I have good physical and mental health. I really try to take care of myself because I don’t want what happened to my parents to happen to me, if I can help it. I exercise and I watch what I eat in an attempt to keep serious heart issues from developing until I am much older than I am now.
Today, as the saying goes, “60 is the new 40!” In other words, people who are 60 now are generally healthier and in better physical condition than 60-year-olds were in previous generations. As a result many people argue that being 60 today should be considered “middle-aged” as opposed to being “really old” or “ancient” as I once thought when I was younger. In fact, many people have been talking about the benefits of being in your 60s.
So, here are my top five reasons why being 60 is the best:
Since my husband and I have good pensions and stable investments, we no longer have to work for a living unless we really want to. We can decide whether we want to be completely retired, or work part-time.
We can decide at the last minute if we want to go away for a few days during the middle of the week. We can decide to jump in the car, at 6 p.m. any day of the week, and go out to dinner and a movie. If we want to stay home, sleep in and spend the whole day in our pajamas, we can do that too.
We have no one to answer to but ourselves!
2. Age-Related Perks
Many stores, restaurants, airlines, hotels, museums, sports venues, and public transit systems offer significant discounts to seniors. I love that I can get into a movie for less money than my kids, and receive discounts on drugstore purchases on certain days of the week!
If you're unsure if there is a discount, don't be afraid to ask.
3. Other People’s Opinions Don’t Matter So Much
Once you turn a certain age, you no longer care as much about what other people think about what you wear or how you style your hair. At one time, I really cared about other people's opinions. Now that I’m over 60, not so much!
If I want to dress up to go to church, I will. However, if one Sunday I decide I would rather just wear blue jeans and flip-flops, I can do that too. If I decide I want to cut my hair really short and dye it orange, I’m going to do it. As long as I like it, that’s all that matters!
4. Knowing Who My “Real” Friends Are
After all these years, I have absolutely no doubt who my “real” friends are and why I appreciate them so much. I also realize that the so-called friends who passed through my life did so for a reason, which was to show me who my genuine friends are.
I no longer have to waste my time and energy worrying about why the “fake” friends aren’t in my life anymore. The things they said and did are positive proof they weren’t worth my time then and they certainly aren’t worth it now.
Time is too precious for needless stress, worry and second-guessing other people’s motives or intentions.
5. Appreciation of Family
When both my husband and I turned 60, I suddenly found myself questioning our mortality. How much longer would we actually be around? As a result, I also began to appreciate my husband and our family more and more.
While many of our friends are from larger families, my husband and I both come from relatively small ones. Both of us had mothers who were only children, and our fathers’ siblings died at a fairly young age. We only had two children, as did my sisters.
Thus, we never had countless aunts, uncles and cousins get together for Christmas and Thanksgiving dinners. At one time, I felt ripped off and thought larger families actually had more fun.
However, lots of people don’t get along very well with either their immediate or extended family members or they lose them far too soon. So, I’ve come to realize how fortunate I am and learned to truly appreciate and love my small family.