Monday, 18 February 2013

How I lost 20+ years off my life by reading the Reader's Digest :) !

Yesterday I finally got round to reading last months Reader's Digest magazine. A headline on the front cover caught my eye; 'Go Forth and Create, Why your best years can come late in life'. This sounded right up my street! Eagerly anticipating finding out some new ideas to try out as part of my 'New Beginnings', I turned to p.42. A quote at the top of the page showed a promising start; 'Who says your best years are behind you by the time you reach middle age?' My sentiments exactly! The article then went on to give a lot of facts and statistics about the optimum age at which writers, artists, musicians etc. produce their best work. Skipping over that part as I was eager to get to the bit about getting creative in later life I turned the page and came across a section where the writer of the article grouped different ages together and made suggestions as to what you should do when you reach this age. Well all I can say is that although my birth certificate says something different, according to this person's criteria I am only in my 20-30's!
According to the author people in this age group should make time for singing, writing or drawing. They also suggest that they should take part in on-line forums, join a choir and start your own blog. Apart from the drawing, I never was very good at it, I've done all of the above in the past year!

Ever ready to learn and develop I then turned to the section for my age group. I've never felt so patronised or let down as I was when I saw what she suggests for us more mature people. I quote; ' Select one of these objects and draw what it might look like: a piece of furniture that's also a fruit; a vehicle that's a fish; a computer that's a teacup...................! Obviously if we're over a certain age then we must all be senile as far as this person is concerned! Anyway, I've already said that I can't draw so there's no hope for me then. As I read on she wrote, 'the old 'use it or lose it' adage still stands'. so what does she suggest we do to use it? Again I quote, 'spend 10 minutes each day doodling with your wrong hand'! Shoot me now if that's all I'm meant to be capable of.

 But it gets worse! Once you're over 70, you're meant to roll a 6 sided dice to select 1 of 6 questions and spend some time pondering on the question selected. An example of one of the questions is 'How would the world be different if you had 2 thumbs on each hand? Now is it just me or does anyone else find this either highly amusing, insulting or both?

A couple of months ago someone posted on facebook this picture of a 90 year old woman and a copy of her tips for living. Personally I'd rather follow them than these bizarre suggestions in the Reader's Digest. So here they are:-
Words of wisdom from an 90 year old 

This is something we should all read at least once a week!!!!! Make sure you read to the end!!!!!!

Written by Regina Brett, 90 years old, of the Plain Dealer, Cleveland , Ohio . 

"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 42 lessons life taught me. It is the most requested column I've ever written.

My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more: 

1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good. 

2. When in doubt, just take the next small step. 

3. Life is too short – enjoy it. 

4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and family will.  

5. Pay off your credit cards every month. 

6. You don't have to win every argument. Stay true to yourself. 

7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone. 

8. Save for retirement starting with your first pay check. 

9. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile. 

10. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present. 

11. It's OK to let your children see you cry.  

12. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about. 

13. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it... 

14 Take a deep breath. It calms the mind. 

15. Get rid of anything that isn't useful. Clutter weighs you down in many ways. 

16. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger. 

17. It's never too late to be happy. But it’s all up to you and no one else. 

18. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer. 

19. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special. 

20. Over prepare, then go with the flow. 

21. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple 

22. The most important sex organ is the brain. 

23. No one is in charge of your happiness but you. 

24. Frame every so-called disaster with these words 'In five years, will this matter?' 

25. Always choose life. 

26. Forgive but don’t forget.  

27. What other people think of you is none of your business.  

28. Time heals almost everything. Give time time. 

29. However good or bad a situation is, it will change. 

30. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.. 

31. Believe in miracles. 

32. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now. 

33. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young. 

34. Your children get only one childhood. 

35. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved. 

36. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere. 

37. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back. 

38. Envy is a waste of time. Accept what you already have not what you need. 

39. The best is yet to come... 

40. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up. 

41. Yield. 

42. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift."
My favourite is no.21 'wear purple'! It's one of my favourite colours and as any of my friends will tell you, I wear it a lot! Looking at this list I think that I do most of them already but there's a few that I could probably work on a bit more. Still, if it means that I might live until I'm 90 and still be enjoying life, then it'll be worth it.

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