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April 18, 2024

"You're not too old."

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Something I want in my life, and I imagine a lot of people want to is to feel more youthful. When we’re young are more active and we recover faster, so we’re more willing to strain ourselves. We’re more interested in doing things that are physically uncomfortable but opens us up to more opportunities and experiences. 

But as we age and our bodies adapt over time, we slowly start to lose some of that and settle for a more conservative lifestyle. We don’t bend, move, and fit like we used to, so our options become a little more limited.

What’s unfortunate though is the mindset that goes along with the subtle physical decline. We start telling ourselves we can’t do things before we even give them a try. We rule ourselves out without even evaluating the tradeoff. We start to feel like we’re losing our edge and that our highest peak is already behind us, which is deflating.

But you know that old expression “Age is just a number”… What if it was actually true? What if our biological age doesn’t have to be correlated with our lifestyle age?

This become very clear to me last weekend. My fiancé Irene is 29 years old, which is not old by any stretch, but as a competitive gymnast she’s on the very old side of the sport. The narrative is that girls do gymnastics until they’re 18, then if they’re good enough to compete at a higher level they continue on through 22 or so, and beyond that it’s very uncommon.

Irene however refused to believe that. Last weekend she competed in a National Championship alongside college-aged women and didn’t only keep up, she was better than many of them and won two events! 

She’s living proof that you don’t need to accept the expectation people have about things, especially what you can or can’t do because of your age. What you choose is what rules, and too many people take on the story of what they’re supposed to do rather than chasing down what they want for themselves.

And while this example has been very focused on physical abilities, this is true in so many areas: In business you’re not too old to take a chance and make your dream come true. If you want to start a family, don’t listen to what people say about not having the energy for it if that’s what you want to do. If you want to backpack and travel the world, you can and you should!

“You’re not too old.” Now the question you need to ask yourself is, for what?

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