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Aging Gracefully

Recently I’ve been thinking about the term “aging gracefully”. To me, it was used as a euphemism for showing signs of aging but still moving forward with life. After talking to residents and giving it more thought, I see that goes beyond just physical appearance. I believe aging gracefully is caring for yourself—mind, body, and soul. This includes having the ability to embrace the changes and challenges that come with time, living a healthy and fulfilling life, and maintaining a positive outlook. It’s also being able to appreciate the wisdom and experiences that come with age and accepting that doing your best is good enough.

Rather than listing strategies to age gracefully, we asked Acacia Creek residents about what aging gracefully means to them and here are some of their inspiring responses:

“Be who you are and don’t try to fit into someone else’s mold. It’s not about conforming to someone’s idea of what you should or shouldn’t be. Only you can determine what you want to look and act like.”

“Don’t complain. Maintain a positive attitude and when you can’t be positive, take time for yourself to recharge. Don’t feel guilty about what you can’t do. Don’t repeat the same stories over and over, say please and thank you to those who help you.”

“We receive grace without doing anything. Grace is available to everyone. It’s not earned, it’s given, like the blue sky and the rain that falls. We have to see it and accept it. Aging gracefully means we can still do things, but we might have to do them differently.”

“The concept of graceful is weird to me. I don’t know how to grow old, but I think you accept what is happening to you. It’s not enough to look good, it’s a matter of being positive and engaged.”

“Don’t talk about being old or your problems. Accept your problems and do the best you can. If it can be corrected, try. Don’t expect miracles but keep trying.”

“Aging gracefully is walking without a hitch in my get-along. I noticed I was walking differently, now I remind myself to stand tall when I walk. I’m also going to keep doing what I’ve done for a long time, exercise and yoga.”

One resident thought the serenity prayer could be applied to aging gracefully: God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. What goes along with this is having the strength to forgive yourself and others for short comings, forget the unpleasant past and remember that we are all doing the best we can.

Aging gracefully is a personal journey, it is how you care for yourself. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach, and what works for one person may not work for another. The most important thing is to keep finding what makes you feel happy, healthy, and fulfilled. No one can do this for us, but we can be kind and understanding to other people on their journey.

Acacia Creek Retirement Community inspires residents to live an active, meaningful life. Our mission as a senior community is to enrich the independence, well-being, and security of our residents through exceptional services and care based on Masonic values.

To learn more about Acacia Creek or our senior housing opportunities, contact us at WWW.ACACIACREEK.ORG/CONTACT

Article by:
Penny Vitoria
Successful Aging Coach

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