Some of the happiest women I know are fifty and up. They’re always smiling. They’re always positive. They have this unshakable calmness about them. I can just tell that my concerns and problems seem so futile to them—like they know it will all work out for me, so they aren’t sweating it. Many of my favorite shows and movies are also about women who are past middle age (Hello “Grace and Frankie”!). There seems to be such a freedom that comes with getting older. I had a tiny taste of it—I know it’s really nothing—when I entered my thirties. I thought I’d feel like everything was over after my twenties but instead, I’ve felt just more stable and secure. I felt happier. I like to think that will only continue. I’ve spoken to some of my absolute favorite older women—they’re my second and third mothers, if you will—and here’s what they say about why getting older is actually awesome.
Always consider the alternative
First and foremost getting older is inevitable. We talk about it as if there was some other way. There isn’t. Well, there is: death. So many of the fabulous older women I love just focus on the fact that it’s so great they’re still here to enjoy life, friends, sex, travel, great food, and all the things they adore. The alternative ain’t so great.
You acquire relationship wisdom
Your romantic relationship becomes much more stable. You know how to fight fair. You know which fights aren’t worth picking. You know how to identify the moods and needs of your partner. You get into a really pleasant rhythm.
You acquire career wisdom
You’re finally an expert in your field. You can assess whether or not a project, partnership, or deal is a good idea rather quickly. You know how to handle professional relationships with ease. You no longer worry that you’ll somehow show that you’re a rookie because you are not a rookie—far from it.
Your intuition gets stronger
Your intuition is such an interesting thing. In a way, it’s always there for you—it always guides you. But it’s also a gift that gets stronger as you get older. You can hone and sharpen your intuition. It can save you from bad situations and point you on a clear path.
Your friendships grow deeper
It’s an incredible feeling to look around at a table full of friends and realize you’ve known some of these friends for lifetimes now. College. Those crazy twenties. Your wedding planning. Your first baby. It’s such a rich feeling.
You find your true style
You really begin to discover and lean into your style towards your late thirties/early forties. You won’t find many women past that age wearing anything trendy. They look fabulous—they know just how to dress themselves in a way that is flattering and shows their personality.
You become more confident
Confidence comes with age, too. You just have a lot of experience under your belt. You have a lot of tough challenges that you overcame, so you know you can tackle anything else life throws at you.
You tolerate less BS
You just don’t waste time being polite to people whom you know you don’t want to associate with, won’t be working with, and won’t be helping. You shut down rude individuals. You spot manipulation from a mile away.
You grow some money
You’ve got some money in the bank now. When you were younger, you had to pinch pennies so you could put X amount into that fund and buy a house. But you’ve already done those things now, so you can enjoy your liquid funds a bit more, without concern.
You make better use of your time
You realize how precious time is, and you won’t waste any of it. You don’t do things you don’t want to do, just to be polite. You don’t spend time with people who leave you feeling unhappy or frustrated. You don’t tolerate people who disrespect your time.
Your family relationships stabilize
With your children. With your parents. With your siblings. Those constant disputes that used to feel like a bright, blood-red paint over all of your interactions have just become a muted grey in the background of what’s otherwise a very vibrant and loving relationship.
You know what you like
You’ve gathered knowledge on what you like in every area. What hotel you like to stay at in that city. Where the best restaurants are in this area. What traits you like in an assistant or a dog walker. What fabrics are comfortable to wear all day. Most of the decisions you make now turn out well, because you’ve been there before.
You make fewer mistakes
You’ve already made most mistakes there are to make, and learned from them. So you don’t live in fear of those “whoopsie” moments as much.
All the insecurity/instability/uncertainty leaves
There is so much insecurity, uncertainty, and instability when you’re young. Will you find a life partner? Will your career work out? Where will you be in ten years? Youth is really tumultuous if you think about it.
Not caring what others think
You don’t give a damn what others think past a certain age. You realize what a waste of time that was and you refuse to waste one more minute on it.