9 Ways to Seem Younger

Original Spanish version published in El Comercio newspaper (Peru) on December 24, 2016

We live in a world fascinated by youth and everything it represents. The job market is no stranger to this fascination: we associate youth with a series of characteristics we all wish to have and maintain: flexibility to change and adapt, learning and unlearning with freshness and speed, curiosity, native use of technology, excitement and a desire to conquer the world, boundless energy, good health. However, being perceived as young or old is now associated more with a series of behaviors and attitudes than one’s actual age. I know people who are 30 years old that already feel old, and others over 70 that are at the peak of their lives in many aspects, confirming that being young at heart does not have an age limit. What are the attitudes or behaviors that I have noticed make us feel – and seem – younger?

  1. Deciding not to fall behind and stay up-to-date, especially with respect to technology, science and innovation, without accepting the mental limitations or excuses we always make for ourselves.
  2. Challenging ourselves intellectually, for example, taking various courses and studying “difficult” subjects, obtaining new academic degrees, learning to write code or a new language. If you find yourself thinking “I am too old for that,” shake it off and never repeat it again. 
  1. Increasing our vitality without giving in to the years and their consequences requires determination and the investment of time and money, but also a high level of discipline and personal effort. Intense and frequent exercise and keeping our weight down always take years off. Feeling younger and having more energy pays in opportunities and quality of life.
  2. Stretching our mind towards new ideas and all kinds of established paradigms, especially those related to innovative ideas and what “a certain age” means. Our mental assumptions are worth revising: age today is not the same as it once was.
  3. Cultivate curiosity and the excitement of having many new and different projects, careers and interests that have nothing to do with your everyday work or with the age you are supposed to be. This helps us to enjoy life more, as well as travelling, going out, seeing and feeling new things.
  4. Challenging conventionalisms without allowing ideas of the past to condition our abilities or dreams. Being young is a mental attitude sustained by continuously rebelling against the status quo.
  5. Keeping away from negative, gossipy and troublemaking people who only try to hide their unhappiness and pettiness by poisoning other people’s lives.
  6. Making new friends, and the more diverse and different they are from us, the better. They bring different ideas and other perspectives that refresh and renew us and help us fight the mental rigidness that ages both body and mind.
  7. Visualizing how we are going to celebrate when we achieve our goals and dreams in order to program our brain is key to making that achievement come true. Setting very ambitious goals and dreaming big at any age, without ever giving up on them, keeps us fresh and vital. Life is short, there is no time to lose!

Merry Christmas to everyone and may 2017 be the best year of your lives!

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