53 Things That Get Better With Age
Unless you're talking about red wine or aged cheese, getting older is usually fraught with negative implications. But before you get down about getting older, think about it -- there are lots of things that improve with age. Here are 53 of them. Read on, then gain a new perspective!
Mind and Body
: Sure, it's a little fortune cookie-ish, but consider this: You can acquire knowledge from a book, but only by living can you acquire wisdom.
2. Life stories
: The longer you live, the more stories you have and the richer they become.
3. Emotional stability
: Research shows that people get less neurotic as they get older.
4. Body image
: You finally start appreciating the body you have.
5. Brain games
: In response to research that cognitive training can keep your brain fit and reduce your chance of developing dementia or Alzheimer's disease, Web sites like Lumosity.com are continually creating fun and effective ways to exercise your noggin.
: And it isn't just because you do crosswords! As long as you keep reading, your verbal ability will continue to improve -- particularly your use of antonyms and synonyms.
: Studies show that selective attention does not decline with age, meaning you can focus on crucial things and resist distractions that younger people may not be able to ignore.
8. Problem-solving skills
: Research shows that the aging brain stores more mental outlines of generic problems and solutions that can be applied to new problems.
9. Expert knowledge
: The information you learn about an occupation or even your favorite hobby resists the effects of aging.
: You become more attuned to both your mind and body. (The good and
: You've learned that all good things come with time. So what's the hurry?
: The longer you live, the more things you accomplish (big and small) and the more you have to be proud of.
: Your ability to cope with stressors and disasters gets stronger with time and experience.
: When you've “been through it all,” you recognize things in life that younger -- less keen -- people don't.
15. Common sense
: It keeps developing as you survive the dares and risks you take throughout life.
: Not only do you admire the accomplishments of others, you also garner their admiration.
: Your sense of humor gets better with age. And what's a long life without a lot of good laughs?
18. Muscle maturity
: With repetitive use, you gain the neurological ability to contract your muscles harder, resulting in better muscle definition -- no matter what your age.
19. Sports training
: The Senior Olympic athletes have learned how to best challenge -- and rest -- their bodies. And as you get older, you can start doing physical activities you really enjoy doing, rather than exercise you think you must do.
Family and Relationships
: According to 77-year-old Maggie Scarf, author of September Songs: The Good News About Marriage in the Later Years
, older couples are more affectionate and say “I love you” more.
: If you haven't already noticed, sex gets better with age. Not only do you know your likes and dislikes, you also feel more confident communicating your sexual desires.
: Families continue to grow with every generation, bringing in new members and extending the family line.
: There is something uniquely wonderful about watching your grandkids grow up.
: They deepen with age as you further recognize and value the joy of companionship.
: Boomer and senior networking has exploded with the growth of senior housing
communities and online communities such as Eons.com, VibrantNation.com, and ThirdAge.com.
26. Fido and Fluffy
: Your relationships with your furry friends grow with every warm and welcome cuddle, walk in the park, and scratch behind the ears.
27. The love and appreciation of others
: Along with wisdom and experience comes the ability to deeply love and appreciate the people who have touched your life.
Food and Drink
: This is true for semi-hard and hard cheeses like cheddar and Parmigiana-Reggiano, along with soft-ripened cheeses such as blue cheeses, Brie, and limburger. Without proper aging, these delectable cheeses would lack their distinctive flavor and characteristic texture.
: Older eggs are better for hard-cooking because their shells won't stick to the cooked egg white.
: That distinctive beef flavor and coveted tenderness is best achieved when quality beef is allowed to age. Unaged beef gives off a distasteful metallic flavor that can only be transformed with time.
: Lasagnas, enchiladas, and other casserole dishes tend to taste better the next day. (Just don't tell the cook.)
32. Liquors with longevity
: Full-bodied red wines like Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz, dessert wines, scotch, vintage ports, whiskey, and higher-alcohol, full-bodied beers all taste better when aged.
: Best-loved, classic cookbooks tend to be the ones marked with food stains and fingerprints.
34. Cooking skills
: Only an experienced cook knows how to shave time off the preparation of a meal and, equally important, confidently bring a somewhat botched meal to the table and successfully convince the dinner guests that it turned out exactly as planned.
: Baby plants, like infants, need time to reach their growth potential.
. Fruit trees
: Older trees produce higher quality fruit -- as long as they are pruned and properly cared for.
. Shade trees
:What starts as a skinny limb climbs toward the sky, sprouting gorgeous branches of leaves that provide a cool, comfortable place to rest or read a good book.
. Gardens and fields:
Gardens and fields begin with seeds or fruitless bushes that develop into food-giving plants. With age comes a bounty of fresh fruit, vegetables, and herbs.
: With time and proper care, soil builds its nutrient-rich composition and bursts with life-giving properties.
: It takes time for biodegradable materials to break down and provide long-term benefits to soil and plants.
. A bird's song
: Mature birds have a stronger and wider range of trills than hatchlings.
. Antiques and collectibles
: Their worth is not only in monetary value but the sheer sentimentality of cherished possessions that have been treasured for so many years.
: You may hate the styles today, but they'll soon make their way back as retro.
44. Real estate:
If you hold on to property long enough, its value will grow.
45. Diversified investment portfolios:
Don't fall for the get-rich-quick investment scams -- and avoid the stress of day trading. Instead, invest your money in a variety of strong companies and you'll multiply your investments.
46. Money-saving perks:
Can you say “senior discount”?
: New leather may be pretty (and stiff), but only well-worn leather has that soft and supple feel that comes with age.
All that cuddling and sleeping makes your sheets softer and more inviting (for more cuddling and sleeping).
Whether it's your favorite pair of blue jeans or a good pair of boots, it gets more comfortable with every wear.
50. Classic cars and sports cars:
Fancy new cars may be fast and flashy, but the classics have ageless appeal -- and, better yet, they are paid off and cheaper to insure.
51. Scrapbooking or photo album collections:
Your photos reflect the richness of your life -- and the longer you live, the greater the stories your albums can share.
52. Educational travel opportunities:
Check with Elderhostel in your community for traveling opportunities designed for seniors on the go.
53. Collection of mementos
: If you kept them, they mean something to you. And remembering the times and places they represent enriches your life.
What's gotten better as you've aged?
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