“Becoming an Old Person in Training makes it easier to think critically about what age means in this society and the forces at work behind depictions of older people as useless and pathetic.” -Ashton Applewhite
When most people talk about aging, they portray this picture of decline. Hold onto this misguided belief the best years are behind them. Sadly the anti-aging message is pervasive in our society. And the increasing rates of social isolation among older adults speaks volumes about our views on aging.
But what if instead, we looked at aging as a time of growth? How drastically does that change this image?
There isn’t something specific about aging that causes a state of decline. Your beliefs are what cause change with age. Nothing more. By telling ourselves we've gotten "too old to..." we initiate the process of decline. If we'd just admit that yes, we are in fact getting older, embrace this fact, and view aging as an opportunity for further growth...
“Ageism is prejudice against our own future selves.” -Ashton Applewhite
We see the phrase “anti-aging” everywhere. It’s obviously at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
But newsflash: we’re all aging.
There isn’t anything you can do to stop it.
And yet all we hear about are the negative aspects of aging. And this constant push to try to put a stop to a process that’s an inevitable aspect of life.
It’s become painfully apparent we live in an ageist society.
If you look around, you’ll notice a pattern. Of all the advertising to buy products or services to “hide” the fact that we’re aging.
And the real danger here is our thought patterns dictate our actions. Both our individual actions and the actions of society. When you take a look around, it becomes obvious we’ve structured world to discriminate against older adults. This TED Talk on ageism by Ashton Applewhite sums this up perfectly.