As far as we’re concerned, the word “old” is a bit of a myth in itself.
It’s a word used by others to falsely define people of a certain age.
But it certainly doesn’t define us.
We don’t feel old, we don’t look old, and we don’t act old.
While we’re in myth-busting mode, let’s explore a few more that surround so-called “old” people.
Myth One - Brainpower decreases with age
There is no real connection between age and a decline in our mental abilities. While there are differences in learning styles, by continuing to be mentally active, we can actually increase our learning capacity. And as for it taking a little longer for our brain to retrieve information, that is probably because there is more in the memory bank for it to go through.
Myth Two – We stop having sex
Ahhh, no we don’t. In fact, we’re still doing it and we’re still loving it. While testosterone levels might decrease over the years, our sex drive won’t disappear. The US National Council on the Aging conducted a survey on the topic and found that almost half of people over 60 were having regular sex. 43% said that sex is just as good, if not better than when they were younger while 39% wished they were having more sex. Writer Tony Buzan even conducted surveys in 50 countries and found the most sexually active period in people’s lives occurred in the decade between 60 and 70.
Myth Three – We’re lonely
There’s this huge misconception that people of a certain age become as lonely as Eleanor Rigby. The fact is, loneliness can strike at any age. A major study in 2010 revealed that young adults are most likely to feel lonely: 18% of 16 to 24-year olds felt lonely all, most, or some of the time, compared to 11% of respondents aged 65+. We’re good at staying in touch with family and friends, and just as good at using social media to stay connected.
Myth Four – We feel over the hill at 60
A 2009 Pew Research study showed the world what we already know. Age is just a number! 60% of respondents aged 65+ said they felt much younger than the date written on their birth certificate. Many added that they actually felt 10 to 20 years younger than they actually were.
Four myths exploded, but we’re just warming up. There is still so much that is misunderstood when it comes to age and we need to keep reminding the world that “old” is a nothing word to us. It certainly doesn’t define who we are, and what we’re capable of.