Stop Apologizing for Your Age

I’ve noticed something that really bugs me, wonderfully accomplished humans are introduced as the feature guest on a podcast and they inevitably say they feel old after the host recounts several decades of achievement.

Is this the sorry outcome after years of doing exactly what you hoped to do when you were young?

Imagine a young person thinking to themself, I want to write books, I want to fall in love and raise children, I want to have a multi-million-dollar business, I want to garden, I want to walk in the woods many times, I want to have a few cool outfits, I want to laugh with my friends. Through a combination of good luck and intention this young person lives two or three decades and gets some of that stuff done. Then they feel bad they aren’t young anymore.

So, at the beginning we feel insecure and anxious about what we have not yet been able to experience and accomplish and at the end we feel insecure and anxious about how much we have experienced and accomplished.

This is just stupid.

We are all getting older. It’s not a choice for anybody. There is no shame in it. Let’s never apologize for it again. 

It’s better for everyone, sets a positive example, if we can appreciate where we are on the wheel. I am proud of all the walks around the block, the hundreds of thousands of hours of musical reverie I’ve indulged in, the millions of pages I’ve turned in books and in life. You can’t buy it at a store, you pay for it with time.

17 thoughts on “Stop Apologizing for Your Age

    1. I think so, but it’s usually in relationship to who someone is imagining hearing them. I’ve heard people in their early 30’s fret about being old because they still want to be seen as relevant to people in their early 20s. It’s a bad example for everyone as no one gets a benefit.

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  1. Sometimes when people are praised for a long list of achievements, they probably try the self deprecating aging response out of modesty. I don’t know, though, because I don’t get praised for a long list of achievements and am not humble! 😎

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    1. Ha! You’re funny Geoff. That’s a generous way to read it and very likely true. But I still don’t like the implication that being old is problematic. Not just for the old either, it’s discouraging to everyone as it’s inevitable. I would like to see and foster more pride in age. Not that I expect my feeble efforts to stem the tide but I’m trying.

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    1. You aren’t giving yourself enough credit. Most of life’s accomplishements are small but important. Sometimes it’s the mere fact of managing to not do things that are the real accomplishments. All the times I didn’t speak may be more of an accomplishment than the the times I did. I am not good at biting my tongue but I do try.

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