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Most all of us who are aging are busy buying time and looks.

Just saw a piece on BBC UK online that said seniors can buy five extra years with enough and the right kind of exercise.

Yesterday, saw an article that claimed various seaweeds help us stay healthier and live longer.

The other day, in a magazine, there was a big piece on how women and men can look better for longer by getting non-intrusive nip and tuck jobs on faces, necks, limbs: wherever it’s needed to make the skin look much more taunt and less saggy.

Today, there are myriad self-management programs to help newly minted seniors learn how to feel better, look better, think better, and just simply live better. There is no need to worry anymore. Just buy the right combination of programs, follow them religiously, and reap the awesome benefits: a longer, better, happier life!

But what does a longer, better, happier life look like at, say, 85 or 90 or 95 or, increasingly, 105?

And who should decide?

Meeting up with aging

I’m closing in on my 71st birthday. Generally speaking, I don’t look my age or act my age or think my age. And I’m not sure I need lotions and potions and treatments and procedures and prescribed daily exercises and activities to keep feeling and being well for a long time.

What I need to do is what I’m doing now: keeping mentally and emotionally engaged and occupied; being spiritually aware and involved; staying physically active to at least a reasonable level; doing ‘fun’ things with family and friends; and, eating and drinking happily, diversely, but not excessively. And each day, waking with a plan of action.

It’s not a complicated formula but I believe it seems to work for most elderly people a lot of the time at whatever post-70 age.

Why try to fool Mother Nature and Father Time?

Vanity is a funny thing. It seems to confront us most during two seasons of our lives: our early adulthood, and our late adulthood.

As we get older and come to realize we’re getting older, there seems in way too many of us to be this madding need to resist the inevitable and deny reality.

We can fool some of our friends and family and strangers some of the time by getting things done with, to, and for ourselves to somewhat frantically delay looking and acting our age. Plus we can work hard to personally deny the impact of the creeping reality of aging. But that hoax and denial only has a relatively short life span before the wrinkles and sags are back; before the limps and pains again expressively hobble us.

Celebrate what you are

There is perhaps nothing more important and satisfying for us aging ones than to feel a sense of ongoing purpose, independence, and overall contentment.

We can have that every remaining day of our lives.

It’s not about how hard we try to avoid aging. It’s all about how we elect to embrace aging with confidence, dignity, pride, and comfort. It’s all about daily thinking less of our wrinkles and limitations, and a lot more about who we are and what else we can do next.


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Bart Mindszenthy APR, FCPRS, LM
In writing the original edition of Parenting Your Parents in 2002 and the subsequent revised second edition in 2005 and US edition in 2006, Bart Mindszenthy, APR, FCPRS, LM drew upon personal experience with his elderly father and mother, listening to hundreds of people deep into eldercare, plus his professional expertise in managing crises. Boomers can best help themselves and their parents by planning, understanding the challenges and being prepared, he says. The new, North American edition, Parenting Your Parents: Straight Talk about Aging in the Family is his ninth book. "Everyone who has aging parents should consider what issues and challenges lay ahead," says Bart. "Waiting until something happens isn't fair to anyone in the family. But the trouble is, in most families aging parents are in denial and their boomer kids are in avoidance," he says. Since the publication of Parenting Your Parents, Bart has addressed hundreds of groups and has appeared on dozens of radio and television interview and talk shows and national television specials. He is also a regular contributing writer to Hospital News ( Bart also authored two books about family elder caregiving on his own in 2011: The Family Eldercare Workbook & Planner, a comprehensive self-directed complete guide to capture needed information and develop strategies for likely issues and difficult situations, and Aging Parents: 200+ Practical Support Tips from My Care Journey, a compilation of 40 columns that appeared in SOLUTIONS magazine tracking a range of specific caregiving issues and challenges with tips and tactics on how to deal with them; see Bart holds a Bachelor of Philosophy degree with a concurrent major in journalism from Wayne State Univesity. He is Partner in The Mindszenthy & Roberts Corp., a Toronto-based firm with a subsidiary based in Michigan that since 1990 has specialized in issues and crisis communications management and strategic communications planning. Bart has received numerous awards for his work and is principle author of No Surprises: The Crisis Communications Management System (Bedford Press, 1988), which is considered a seminal work on the subject. He is also co-author of Leadership@Work: Be a Better Team Leader Anytime, Anywhere, with Anyone, originally published in 2001and which was the fifth best selling business book of the year in Canada. Since, it's been totally re-written, re-deisgned and re-issued in 2011. It's now also available as an iPad, iPhone and iPod app. For more, see