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Quirkiness Comes with Age

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One of the great benefits of growing older is that it's no longer necessary to "act your age." It is not a loss: There is no longer a need to set an example, and that is freeing. There are other benefits as well. It's okay to wear black socks with shorts, sneakers with "Sunday best," and pajamas in the middle of the afternoon.

It's also okay, if not almost a requirement, to be a bit quirky and opinionated. Seniors gain that privilege simple because they have reached a certain age. But think of it as a privilege. You can say and do whatever you wish! From lovable curmudgeons to outrageous "Auntie Mames," senior men and women don't have the need to apologize for behavior that is uncommon, non-conforming, beyond the bounds of tradition or downright silly. 

That's a well-earned right, worth cherishing!

Senior citizens, however, prove daily that not only does the fun not end when a person reaches a specific milestone of years, but that life can take on new meaning as well. Indeed, if life begins at 40, as that old expression attests, it can also get better at 55 and beyond. If 60 is the new 40, it also follows that that the new "old" is simply second childhood without the angst, full of delightful possibilities. 

Just ask any one of the lively senior citizens who are busier, healthier, more involved and more active than they were 20 years ago.

Actually, a surprising number of retirees launch second careers and entrepreneurial ventures. Baby boomers and those nearing retirement age seek volunteer opportunities; they travel the world, go back to school, partner with non-profit agencies to offer business advice, teach skills, mentor children, and serve their communities myriad, untold ways.

In short, they approach the world with great enthusiasm. Day-to-day living is a new adventure with every turn, and this new crop of "over the hill" characters is determined to drain the cup of life with gusto! 

Today's seniors -- especially those who find 55+ communities so appealing -- approach life with a sense of humor, a sense of wonder and often a newfound sense of purpose and excitement. Isn't it wonderful? 

While younger children and teens may look forward to growing up, older grown-ups know that chronological age is not particularly relevant. It may be trite, but it's also true that age is primarily a state of mind. 

So, go ahead -- release your inner child, no matter how many birthday candles are on your cake!