As I craft this article, I’m forty-seven years of age. I’ve already had my ‘midlife crisis’ at age forty, when there seemed so many things challenging to my identity. But to be nearing fifty I’m beginning to understand more and more the beauty of age as a reflection of life experience.
Just some of the things to love about life experience:
1. First and foremost, you ultimately become comfortable with yourself.
2. There is an appreciation for the vastness of experience that the memory could never contain. There is so much to life and our memories lose the ability to keep up, retaining only what’s truly relevant.
3. There is confidence in God’s faithfulness to come through, especially when it’s matched with our diligent obedience.
4. We are no longer so easily fooled. Even the naive amongst us are wiser for having been duped.
5. Age can be cherished when we realise that what we no longer have in speed and agility we make up for in poise and guile.
6. We appreciate the experiences of others more. Whether people are younger or older, we can respect the person who’s got an experience to share.
7. We have less to prove, because proving things becomes less important.
8. Other people can utilise our life experience and lean on us in a time of need.
9. The competitive streak has been worn down and we are more collaborative.
10. Because our experience is varied, we begin to appreciate the range and diversity of experience in the next person. We no longer see other people as a threat.
11. Experience is a thing to be reflected over, especially in community.
12. Younger people can show us things and we can appreciate them for it, which is an encouragement to them when we are genuine about it.
13. The value in the simple and the simplest things in life comes to be real.
14. There is less ambition, less pressure, less drive, but more passion, more inner call, and more advocacy.
15. We part ways with attractiveness on the outside in favour of attractiveness on the inside.
16. The meaning of life is closer to our grasp.
17. The significant things and the insignificant things stand to be more obvious.
18. Attributes of virtue – like love, peace, courage – become accessible, honed, and prized.
19. There is little interest for the things that truly waste our time (petty jealousies, pleasing people, wasteful practices, etc).
20. People view us as ‘safer’ and more amiable.
21. Resources are used with growing wisdom, care, and generosity.
22. There is less of a hurry in going about life.
23. Enjoyment of life becomes more significantly important.
Life experience is a thing to cherish, as it’s a legacy into others’ lives.
© 2014 S. J. Wickham.