Thinking like an older person - Deepstash

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Secrets of Happiness from the Oldest of the Old

Thinking like an older person

Thinking like an older person is a conscious practice of gratitude. It means focusing on what is rather than what is not. It also means accepting your mortality and being motivated by it: if your days are finite, you might as well enjoy the ones you have left.

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Anxiety is rewarding

Each time we worry and nothing bad happens, our mind connects worry with preventing harm:

Worry → nothing bad happens.

And the takeaway is, "It's a good thing I worried."&nbs...

Beliefs about worry
  • If I worry, I'll never have a bad surprise.
  • It's safer if I worry. We believe that the act of worrying itself somehow lowers the likelihood of a dreaded outcome. 
  • I show I care by worrying. We need to distinguish between caring about a situation and worrying needlessly and fruitlessly about it. 
  • Worrying motivates me. We need to differentiate between unproductive worry and productive concern and problem solving.
  • Worrying helps me solve problems. Extreme worry is more likely to interfere with problem-solving. 
Tools to assist us with worry
  • Calm the nervous system with guided muscle relaxation, meditation, and exercise. 
  • Notice when you're worrying and any beliefs that reinforce worry.  Awareness of the process gives us more choice in how we respond.
  • Embrace uncertainty. Most of the things we care about in life involve uncertainty. It takes considerable practice to begin to embrace it.
  • Live in the present. Practice focusing your attention on the present in everyday activities like taking a shower, walking, or talking with a friend, as well as in more formal practices like meditation or yoga.
  • When we face our fears head-on, they tend to diminish. Deliberately accept what you're afraid of: "It's possible I'll miss my flight." 
The generation gap has always existed
The generation gap has always existed

Complaining about the youth has been going on for millennia, where the older generation finds fault with the younger generation's behavior and shortcomings.

Even Aristotle said of G...

The "Kids these days" effect

Research observed while people may believe in a general decline, they also believe that children are particularly deficient in the traits where they happen to excel.

Authoritarian people are more likely to believe that today's youth lack respect for authority. Intelligent people are more likely to comment that kids never seem to be reading and are getting brainless.

Our flawed memory

Sometimes older people mistakenly remember kids in the past as more accomplished.

And todays youth will likely consider the generation after them to be deficient.

Cue Words That Tease Memory

Certain 'cue' words have the ability to make us remember the first time we did something, which is more often than not in our growing years, or as a young adult.

Example: the word 'Driving...

The Reminiscence Effect

The Reminiscence Effect or the Reminiscence Bump is something found in every middle-aged or old person: a person's memories of the formative years (15 years to the late 20s) are more easily recalled and fondly remembered.

First Time For Everything

The 'First-Time' Theory states that our first job, first kiss, and other things that happened to us for the first time, have an extraordinary effect on our memory, leading to greater and more elaborate cognitive processing.

Example: The first year of college, with its many firsts that a person goes through is more easily remembered than the last years.