More often than not, we fear getting older and dread getting to the stage where we feel past it.
But while there are plenty of things we enjoy more when we are younger, there are just as many things which improve with age too – meaning as your years on the planet increase, your appreciation of some of the best things life has to offer grows.
Remember as a kid when you had a tantrum at the thought of an afternoon nap and kicked up a fuss when bedtime arrived in case you missed anything? What the hell were you thinking!? Naps are a beautiful luxury and arguably the most glorious part of any day. You will happily cancel plans to grab forty winks these days and will wake up with zero regrets.
2. The first day off after a week of work
In your younger days, the first day off tended to be a hungover mess as you had likely gone out on the lash directly after your Friday shift ended. As you age, though, and work feels like a little bit more of a strain, that first day off signifies a heap of free time just stretching itself out in front of you. And getting home has never felt better, knowing that you don’t have to go to work for the next couple of days.
You spent your early twenties chasing after sex like it was the most important thing in the world and sometimes, that may have led to some poor decisions, some pretty empty intercourse and a whole heap of regrets.
Now you treasure sex more because your hormones don’t dominate your life and you treat it as a fun and enjoyable part of life rather than a desperate need to get off here, there and everywhere. And with experience comes better moves, better understanding and better results.
4. Your marriage or relationship
In the early, fledgling stages of relationships, you tend to worry a lot more and every obstacle you hit feels like a crisis. But as you get more comfortable with each other and get to know this person better than you know yourself, you discover that no matter what life throws at you, you can overcome it together and you also know that almost nothing could tear you apart.
As a result, trust grows, you relax more and you enjoy each other’s company more. With less worrying, there is time for more laughing, more chilling and more lovin’.
Being bored is a classic young person horror and one of the biggest complaints you will hear from a teen. But as you grow older, you look at boredom in a slightly different light. Sometimes when there is nothing going on, you appreciate the down time as a bit of a reprieve from real life.
Plus, if there’s nothing to do, you can always have one of those naps we were talking about.
6. Being alone
Surrounding yourself with people and having heaps of friends you can barely name is no longer a priority. As much as you love your other half and the kids or your housemates, you just love it when everyone pops out and you have a few hours of peace to yourself.
It is something that may have previously led you to complain of being bored or lonely; but as the years go by, having private time is one of life’s simple pleasures.
An acquired taste to a youth, it usually takes a while for your palette to accept fermented grapes as a beverage. Nowadays, you don’t know how you lived without the stuff and you can even tell the difference between a claret and a shiraz.
Plus, it gets you drunk quicker. Bonus.
The number of f***s you give about what people think of you tend to decrease in a direct correlation to the years of life you rack up. Where you feared being judged in social situations as a youngster due to lack of knowledge, courage or experience, you later learn that anyone who made you feel insignificant is no longer a part of your life. And you got by fine without them. With the knowledge that no-one should have the power to make you feel inferior, your confidence inevitably grows.
9. Appreciation of technology
When you were younger, you were a bit blase about the new technology that came out. Oh, Gameboy Colour? Cool, I guess. As you grow with age, you realise how much work and advancement goes into producing new generations of gadgets and you can now marvel at how far things have come. Having owned a brick of a mobile, it’s a pretty impressive thing that you can have your entire life in a phone whereas those who have experienced no different will take it for granted.
Technology is cool – and you appreciate it far more with age.
The stuff of nightmares for kids and teenagers – and yet suddenly, once you hit your thirties, you love nothing more than a bowl of olives to munch on as you chill with a glass of something alcoholic.
Similarly, you also develop more time for stronger cheeses and dark chocolate.
Nothing beats a good book – and you open your mind to different genres of literature as you age and also find that you have more patience to spend a good chunk of time getting immersed in a tale. You will discover more new authors and truly appreciate why a bookshop is one of the best places to kick back, relax and absorb the ambiance.
12. Your interest in current events
Not only do you find yourself subscribing to news websites such as Metro.co.uk but you also find yourself watching news channels and even discussing the latest political developments with your friends. In the past, you buried your head in the sand when it came to current events but these days you recognise the importance of knowing your stuff and how it could potentially affect you and yours.
13. Video games
The old people of yesteryear weren’t synonymous with gaming but the next generation have grown up with the hobby and will see a lot more depth to what we play and the worlds we get immersed in. As competitive teens, it was all about blasting your mates in soulless shoot em ups and footie matches but now you choose to invest in storylines and narrative and really notice points such as graphics, voice acting and soundtracks.
You become fussier – but you only end up playing the best. Laters, Call Of Duty.
When you are younger, failing is terrifying and when you miss out on a dream job or flunk an exam it can feel like you have no future. As you age, you fail more and come to learn that it is just a part of life. Therefore, you handle it all much better.
You know now that failure is unavoidable and never means the end – and, what’s more, you embrace each mishap as a learning curve. There’s no defeating you now – bring on the fails.
15. Family gatherings
There was a point where a crowded family meal consisting of talking over each other, bickering and making small talk with that aunt you usually tried to avoid was a living nightmare and you’d rather be out with your mates.
But as the facts of mortality and the fragility of life dawn on you with age, you never know how long you have left with members of your clan. These are the people you love most in the world, despite their flaws, and you will embrace them and appreciate them far more.
Suddenly, there is nowhere you’d rather be than round mum’s for a big family roast and a Sunday quiz where no-one can agree to the answers.
You look at life in a different way entirely.
Problems that you used to leave you with sleepless nights are no longer significant. Those who try and bring you down no longer matter. You have experienced tough times and you have loved and lost. As you grow older, the things that are now important are things you used to take for granted.
It takes experience, education and pain to shape your perspective, but you are glad of your more mature mindset and the attitude that it gives you.
Credit: Metro UK