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Keeping Passion Alive – Why Do We Age? – Adult Health and Wellness

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how do we age

How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?…shoulder bag Paige

– Chronological age

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Chronological age measures the number of years, hours, minutes and seconds that we are alive. If this is our only criterion for healthy aging, we will feel older and older every year that we live. We will feel less energetic, less passionate, less flexible and less alive with each passing day. Fortunately, this is just one of many measures for healthy aging.

– Biological age

Biological age is determined by external appearance and such critical signs of life as thinning and graying hair, wrinkled and sagging skin, brown, white and red patches, cloudy, swollen eyes with bags under them, and a weak and fragile body. Many of these signs can be alleviated with a healthy lifestyle or camouflaged with makeup or cosmetic surgery. Some of the signs of biological aging can actually be reversed through proper nutrition, exercise, positive, creative thinking, and enjoyable life experiences.

– Functional age

Functional age is measured by our physical fitness, including respiratory capacity, cardiovascular efficiency, muscle strength, flexibility, vitality, energy, recovery rate from injury and illness, and immune system strength. Symptoms of high energy, freedom from neuromuscular pain, ability to participate in and enjoy vigorous physical activity, in addition to the ability to adequately manage the basic needs of daily living.

– Mental age

Mental age is subjective and is determined by how old we feel. It is a measure of our enthusiasm and passion for life, our interest in life activities, including sexuality, and our willingness to explore new activities and learn new skills. The more excitement and passion we experience, the happier our minds become, the more others want to spend time with us, the more joy we can have in sharing our being with others.

– Emotional age

Emotional age is the quality of our emotional stability and maturity. It is a measure of how we respond to others, interact with them, and deal with conflict, especially when we are not asserting ourselves. It is also a measure of whether we follow our dreams, pursue our stated goals, manage our responsibilities and commitments appropriately, and how we feel about ourselves and others. It is determined by how we adapt to changing circumstances and to the normal ups and downs of life.

– Intellectual age

Intellectual age is determined by the strength of our memory, our ability to concentrate, think critically about the world around us, solve problems, and remain curious, creative, intellectually sharp, open-minded, and flexible in our thoughts and attitudes.

– Social age

Social age is determined by how we share our time with others, whether we are totally involved with others like a newborn with its mother, or totally defiant, aloof and distanced from others like an abandoned child, or whether we are capable of give and take, share and enjoy the company of others and also being alone.

– Sexual age

Sexual age is determined not only by how we behave sexually, but also by how we think about sex, sexuality, men, women, our own bodies, the bodies of others, and actual sexual acts. Sexual maturity is determined by our awareness, appreciation, and attraction to the very real people in our social environment with whom we have intimate relationships.

Thanks to Erica Goodstone, Ph.D.

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