Are Young People Happier?
by Annia Baron
Young, beautiful people are happier. They glisten in the sun and embody freedom and vitality. Want to be like them? You need thick, shiny hair, porcelain-white teeth an blemish-free, supple skin. Wrinkles and freckles are disgusting, and any age spots should be covered with make-up or lasered so as to not offend. Noticeably, breasts should always be perky. Nipples should remain small, pink and round, and as for vaginas, penises, and the shade of your perineum? Anything less than perfection is undesirable. As we know, ageing bodies are unattractive but thanks to ingenious anti-aging technological advancements, don’t fret. You too can achieve your desired look and start living a life of success.
Clever marketing ploys designed to shame us into believing preposterous notions of beauty and ageing have been around for years. Head-hunting executives pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to employ people whose job it is to target our most inner vulnerabilities and take advantage of our psychological drive to belong. Since the moment we were exposed to TV screens and glossy magazines, our brain has been inundated with messages that equate ageing with loss and disgrace; the older you become, the less effervescent and vibrant you are, the less right you have to be sensual or bold, or to exude confidence and express yourself in ways that delight. In sum, the older you get, the less there is to celebrate about being who you are.
What they’ve never wanted you to know is that you – whatever age you’re blessed to be – are nothing less than perfection. That the accumulation of life experiences you’ve had, the wisdom you hold, your intentions, your relationships, the way you treat others and the world, and importantly, the way you treat yourself is the most beautiful thing about you. The power to accept and praise yourself wholesomely is the exact thing they fear because once you realise this truth, you’re no longer reliant on them. You’re no longer in need of their efforts to keep you stuck in a cycle of self-doubt and consumerism. You rise above that, and you start beaming so brightly that others notice. People start thinking, “I want that too.” and that means trouble for those making a lot of money off your perceived worth all these years.
See, ageing is a privilege. Each year you’ve lived reflects how dear you are to the world and to those that love you. All the changes your body has gone through to get you here is testament to your individual presence and impact. Your worth has nothing to do with how many hairs are left on your head or how much elastin remains in your skin. Youth can be a choice. It’s a mindset. But it starts with the decision to celebrate every age and every stage of life. It asks us to see beauty as more than just skin deep, that change and diversity are wondrous, and that the transformation of every one of the 37 trillion cells we have in our body is cause for daily celebration.
Train your mind to see physical changes as a reflection of your inner unfolding. The next time you see an advert for a beauty product or hear another anti-aging message, choose to see the absurdity. Hold steady in the knowing that you’re undoing years of priming and regenerating a version of you that is simply impenetrable to someone else’s profiteering. Let’s associate ageing with reverence and liberation, as well as sex, fun, freedom, and adoration. Let’s embrace new physical discoveries as gifts and teach ourselves to welcome them. Let’s giggle at ourselves more often and for goodness’ sake, let’s stop telling ourselves that we’re too old for this or that. There’s no loss of anything with age… except old, irrelevant ideas about what you think you should be.
You, at the age you are today, are magnificent. Now, give yourself a cheeky wink in the mirror and go do whatever it is that ignites joy within you.
Annia Baron is a Clinical Psychologist and Mindset Coach. Interested in elevating your mindset to live a life you desire and deserve? Get in touch on 0402 448 278, on Instagram @anniabaron or visit www.remindyourself.com
Check out some incredible humans who clearly have a juicy mindset when it comes to ageing. Minoru Saito from Japan who at 77 became the oldest person to sail solo nonstop around the world in 2011, Johanna Quaas is recognised as the world’s oldest gymnast at 86 who only got into the sport in her late 50s, and Nola Ochs at 98, became the oldest person to receive her Masters degree. Then there’s Wang Deshun (81), Carmen Dell’Orefice (86) and Daphne Selfe (88), all successful fashion models redefining societal stereotypes about ageing.