Are you afraid of aging?

March 24, 2014

sgingGrowing older does not need to be a fearful process. Worrying too much about it won’t do any good. In fact, it can even turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy and you could end up looking much older than your age. Thoughts do have power.  If you can control your thoughts of aging and the possibilities of becoming ill and disabled as you age, you will be on the right track to truly aging gracefully and in good health.

Society in general has a preoccupation with aging.  Even the slightest hint of aging can result in anxiety and stress. There is a medical term for people with this kind of fear. It is referred to as gerascophobia– the fear of growing old. Also, it is often known as Peter Pan syndrome.

So what are the most common fears of growing older?  Men and women have different reasons.

  • Impotence. It is one of men’s worst nightmares – even scarier than death or cancer. For men, being unable to perform what they used to is unbearable. It’s one nature’s way of saying, “no hard feelings.”
  • Weakness. Physical strength is what makes man a man. It’s one of the manly attributes that symbolizes virility. Unfortunately, even the strongest man on earth is no match against the diminishing effect of aging.
  • Senility. Alzheimer’s disease and dementia are often closely associated with growing old. The scary thing is that men are more likely to have this in old age compared to women. Perhaps part of being a man is to have the courage to face this fact.
  • Unattractiveness. Some women and men feel they are designed by nature to appear attractive. Sadly aging is inevitable, as people grow older they slowly lose physical attractiveness and their power to attract.
  • Being Left Alone. Unlike most men, women love to have company. They like staying around with somebody they can talk to, do things together or go some place with someone dear to them. Children leaving home or death of a loved one can be quite depressing for most women.
  • Cancer. As women age, they become more prone to certain cancers: ovarian, cervical, colon, and breast cancer. That’s why doctors recommend mammograms, pap smears, and colonoscopies more often as women get older. This only adds up to their fears that their body is slowly breaking down.

How to age with grace

  • Live a healthy, normal life and let time have its due course.
  • Keep yourself mentally, physically, and socially active.
  • Surround yourself with friends and make yourself likeable.
  • It’s not all physical attractiveness or talent that impresses people; it’s your personality and charisma that matters most.