Growing old is something unavoidable, as is thinking about it when we do. Sustaining the intellectual part of our being becomes even more important that at other times of our lives. The good but sometimes sad news is we are living longer. The issue is how to make this extra time worthwhile to ourselves and of course with those with whom we interact. We know of so many cases of our colleagues ‘loosing it’ either through dementia or other age related illnesses of the mind. Keeping that part of us sharp is so important, for both our self awareness and to be at least sympathetic to the way that others see us. This is almost self evident, yet in this age where entertainment (much of it mindless) is served up at the touch of a remote button many folk surrender their mental alertness along with their physical decline.
Reading then is as important at eighty as it was at eight, reading is one of the most important tools in the mental gymnasium.
Ballroom dancing and golf are important, of course they are but exercising the mind is crucial. Now we have more time, then we should engage the mental muscles as well as the physical. If we used to read ‘the Beano’ maybe its time we graduated to the Daily Mail. If we read John le Carre maybe it’s time we read ‘The Bard’.
Whatever our choices, make them challenging and we will enjoy both the work and the achievement.