Has age been a main deterrent to you while wanting to pursue a hobby or passion? Do you feel you are too old to a few things? Many older adults simply give up on their dreams and passions because they feel they are “too old.” Apart from their own feelings, there are people who tell them that they should not do certain things because they are not “age-appropriate.”
Due to such societal pressures, older adults often fall prey to loneliness and isolation, which may lead to mental issues like depression and anxiety. As many Indian older adults do not talk about their mental health due to fear of judgment, most of them slip into more severe forms of mental illnesses like dementia or Alzheimer’s before anyone notices.
However, this need not be a reality for you. Instead of letting life defeat you in senior years, you can live it on your own terms. Let no one decide for you what you should and should not do and live life like a boss regardless of any age, just how this veteran Guide superstar, Waheeda Rehman did.
Waheeda Rehman Turns Photographer
HappyAging is always on a lookout for ways to keep older adults healthy and happy. The story of yesteryear superstar, Waheeda Rehman taking up wildlife photography at the age of 81, is immensely inspiring and is a must read for all who think age weighs them down.
While Waheeda Rehman is better known for her skills in front of the camera, she recently revealed that she is equally happy staying behind it as well. She held an exhibition of her pictures from her expeditions to various countries and wildlife reserves in India.
This veteran actress has a bucket list as well. She wants to learn scuba diving next!
First photography, then scuba diving, Waheeda is giving serious life goals to all of us. She has proved that age is indeed just a number and there is no stopping for anyone once they set their heart to it.
“Feisty at Fifty” author Sudha Menon also talks about ageism. She says that older adults in India face more ageist comments than any others around the world. Even those who are close to you are very likely to give you age-related advice, saying that you can or cannot do certain things. Not all older adults like traveling to religious places, neither do all of them want to “sit at home and relax.”
If you want to go out and do something, or pursue your passion, there is no better time to do it. There are several examples around us like Sangeeta Bahl, who conquered the Everest at 53 or Vimmie Manoj, who pursues painting as her passion at 50, 56-year-old Mangala Mani, who stayed for 403 days in Antarctica or 70-year-old Natubhai Patel, who plays cupid for older adults and makes matches for them. These older adults have broken all ageist norms and have emerged triumphant in their chosen fields of passion and interest.
Make a Bucket List
A bucket list is a list of whatever things you wish to do in life. However, it is effective only if you try to complete each one of them! It could be something simple like going to watch a movie alone to something exciting like trying bungee jumping. You could learn a new language, a new skill or travel the world. Whatever your wishes are, write them down and make your own bucket list.
Having a bucket list is not limited to teenagers or youngsters; everyone should have one. In fact, post-retirement is the best time to make this list. You have all the time and resources at your end, your responsibilities are over and you are a free soul.
Life after 50s is the best time to live. Moreover, there is even a term for it – Seenagers. As seenagers, you are carefree, free of all responsibility of children, school, job, homework and loans and can live life on your own terms. The beauty of seenagers lies in the fact that they are physically strong and mentally young and have the freedom of choice that teenagers do not have.
Learn New Things – It Is Never Too Late
Waheeda Rehman also said that she had undergone proper training for learning photography. While she was acting, she used to carry a small camera always to the sets. However, there was no proper trainer to teach her the skill and she didn’t have time either to learn.
“After I retired, I had enough time to learn and pay attention to the art.”
She said at her exhibition that once she retired, she found ample time to pursue her passion and actually learn the art.
This goes to show that older adults too can learn new things. In fact, it is even better for them as they are focused on their needs and are not distracted by other issues like family responsibilities, financial worries, stability, etc. Older adults are also punctual and disciplined in general. All this, combined with the openness to learn new things and the reservoir of knowledge that seniors already have, make them a formidable force.
Hence, do not hesitate to pick up on your long-forgotten dreams and hobbies and give them a new life because age does not mater, your attitude does.
Do you have your bucket list? What are your hobbies that you’d like to pick up? Do tell us in comments your ideas on your bucket list or share your story with us on [email protected]
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