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Last Updated on June 21, 2018 by Diane Hoffmaster
I am writing a message for my daughter about acting her age as part of the #DisruptAging campaign. This post is made possible with support from AARP’s Disrupt Aging. All opinions are my own.
When my children were young, they were very tall for their age. That means at age five, they were the size of an 8 year old. Which meant that when they ACTED five, they got some very nasty looks from people who wanted them to 'act their age'. The age they ASSUMED my children were, anyhow. It created a lot of stress for me and probably unreasonable expectations on my part about how my kids should be acting. Fast forward a decade and that rambunctious 5 year old is now a mature 16 year old. She already has colleges picked out and a life plan all put together. I want to tell her to slow down and embrace every moment of the life she is living right now. And after listening to the #DisruptAging interview last week with Cindy Gallop, I wanted to write a message for my daughter about not letting her age ever stop her from doing what she wants to do. I encourage you to check out DisruptAging.org and join the conversation!
What is the #DisruptAging message all about?
We live in a society which seems to think that a woman's age is a taboo subject. How many times have you heard the joke about never asking a woman her age? Listening to Cindy speak last week was inspiring. She encourages women to STOP denying how old you are and START realizing that your age is just a number. Stop being embarrassed about it! I want my daughter to know that just because she is 20, 30,40 or 50 doesn't mean a single dang thing when it comes to what she can accomplish.
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In Real Life AND on TV
The ad industry seems to think that 'sex sells' but only if you are young. Women age out of acting careers much younger than men do because an older guy is seen as 'distinguished' while an older woman just seems to be 'old'. What sort of message is that to send to our daughters? Cindy Gallop, in collaboration with AARP and Teen Vogue, wants to encourage women to stop letting their age be something they are embarrassed about!
Lessons I learned From Cindy That I Want My Daughter to Know
After listening to Cindy speak last week, I wanted to write a message for my daughter about never letting her age hold her back from her dreams. If you want more information about the campaign, you can check out DisruptAging.org.
- Live your life in a way that challenges preconceived notions and stereotypes of aging. Don't let society tell you how to dress or act based on the year you were born.
- You are NEVER too young OR too old to have an opinion, to take a stand, or to reach for the stars. Don't let anyone dismiss your beliefs because you are young (or old!).
- Be a role model for other people regarding what aging really means. Someone needs to break the stereotypes and it may as well be you!
- Never lie to someone about your age. Be proud and shout it from the rooftops. It is just a number and it does not have to define you.
- Every woman has an amazing story behind them, especially older women! As you get older, don't let others push you into roles you don't want just because you hit a certain chronological age. Whether that is motherhood or retirement, if you aren't ready, forge ahead on your own path.
- Your age and experience can be a huge benefit to an employer, whether that is the energy of youth or the maturity of middle age. Be your own cheerleader and be confident enough to highlight each and every benefit you can bring to your dream job.
- I know it is a long way off, but remember that as you get older, life isn't closing down, it is opening up! Live every moment to the fullest right now but never think that you can't keep up that lifestyle when you get older.
Taking My Own Advice
As I sat down to write a message for my daughter about aging, I realized that the best way for me to get this message across to her is to live that message myself. I am 45 years years old. There are definitely a few grey hairs on my head and wrinkles around my eyes. I am amazed at how quickly the last 20 years have flown by. As my teens prepare to flee the nest in the coming years, I need to have a plan for the next 30 years of my life. I am going to work on figuring out what my retirement is going to look like.
One thing I can guarantee it WONT be is boring. I have far too many things to do and places to see still to let age slow me down! Hopefully, by living life to it's fullest I can encourage my daughter to do the same!
Who is Cindy Gallop?
Cindy Gallop is a brandbuilding, marketing and advertising guru who's accomplishments are too numerous to list here. She is an outspoken advocate of diversity in advertising, technology and business. Check out the Teen Vogue Summit for a full bio.
Thankyou to Cindy Gallop for the inspiration to write a message for my daughter about aging. I hope it encourages you to rethink the way YOU grow older!
How will YOU #DisruptAging this year?
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Diane is a professional blogger and nationally certified pharmacy technician at Good Pill Pharmacy. She has two college aged kids, one husband and more pets than she will admit to. She earned her BS in Microbiology at the University of New Hampshire but left her career in science to become a stay at home mom. Years of playing with LEGO and coloring with crayons had her craving a more grown up purpose to her life and she began blogging and freelance writing full time. You can learn more about her HERE.