Each month, I meet with a group of congregants who are at least eighty years of age. This month, I asked them what advice they wished they had been given during their middle years.
Their advice was so wise, I asked them if I could share it. I think people at every age could benefit from these elder’s thoughts about what they wish they had known earlier in their lives. Here they are:
Be less selfish.
Don’t get angry.
Be more forgiving of myself – and others.
Let life unfold.
Deal with It.
Don’t worry so much.
Spend more time with your children – and other important people.
Be more self-confident.
Don’t take yourself so seriously—it will work out.
There is always something good around the corner.
Know you will make mistakes – and you’ll survive.
Don’t dwell on your past.
Appreciate every day.
Enjoy your ‘good things’ now. Don’t put them away for special times. Each day is special.
Ask yourself “what’s the worst thing that can happen?”
Ask more questions of others.
Have something you love to do when you retire.
Take time for yourself.
Don’t try to be perfect.
Be involved in the community.
Don’t be so angry.
Choose to have a happy life.
The tissue of life is living it.
And from a poem I shared with them:
“I am not old…she said.
I am rare.
I am the standing ovation at the end of the play….
You think I am waiting to die…
But I am waiting to be found.
I am a treasure.
I am a map.
And these wrinkles are
Imprints of my journey.
Ask me anything.”
Ask our elders your questions. They are waiting to be found.