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Don't Believe

Excerpt from Daily Cures, Wisdom for Healthy Aging by Connie Mason Michaelis

I recently heard an interesting expression, “Don’t Believe everything you think!” It also happens to be the name of a country song by Lee Brice. Unlike the lyrics of the song, which are directed towards a girlfriend who thinks she is getting an engagement ring, I think it is pure brilliance. We know we can’t believe everything we hear, see, and read, but have you ever considered that even if you think it, it may not be accurate or at least should be held lightly? Our opinions are just that, opinions!  A wise man said, “The greatest deception men suffer is from their own opinions.”  Many a misguided soul has believed and acted on information that was not true. The results can be disastrous.

How does that pertain to successful aging?  It is more important than ever to keep an open mind. The things you have believed all your life may not serve you well as you age. If you think productivity and usefulness remain attached to your career or if you believe that life ends when you can no longer drive, your belief system must change to move forward in a healthy way.  Mark Twain said, “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.” Being stuck in an old and outdated belief system is dangerous. My good friend just told me recently that she wished her parents had been open to moving out of their home. Instead, their cast-iron belief that home was always best led to many complications and ended in isolation and loneliness.  Things change, people change and consequently, beliefs that we have held for years may not serve us any longer.  At a time in life that may prove most challenging, flexibility remains a crucial virtue in navigating successful aging. 


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