So you just turned 50, now what?
Remember how old 50 was when you were in your 20s? Well, for me, 50 has arrived and while I used to think that 50 would mean the end, it truly can be the beginning if you have that mindset. So, I give you a single man’s guide to turning 50—a guide to enjoying and thriving in your older years.
Get a sports car!
As cliché as that might seem, do it! In a poem by William Stafford entitled “Fifteen”, a boy finds a motorcycle and in the end does not get to ride it because he is only 15. The motorcycle represents his passage into adulthood.
Three days before my fiftieth birthday, I purchased a black-on-black Camaro. For me, the Camaro has come to represent holding on to my youth, as I grow older, and I love it! As Ferris Bueller said,
“It is so choice. If you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up.”
See your doctor/dentist!
While this might not apply to everyone, I hate going to the dentist or the doctor. If I have something wrong with me, I often will put it off until it just becomes unbearable. Trust me on this, once you hit 50, the doctor and dentist need to become your friend.
For me, all it took was one little trip and a prescription of Lipitor and my hereditarily high cholesterol is now in check. I am no longer a “heart attack waiting to happen”, as a school nurse once told me upon seeing my blood work.
So, if you plan on living to an old age, let the professionals help. They can help ensure that your over-50 years are as comfortable as can be. Oh, and do not forget to get a colonoscopy! SEE the colonoscopy, BE the colonoscopy!
Quit chasing women in their 20s!
Some have suggested that I extend this to 30s, but I really cannot because my father was twenty years older than my mother. Besides, a woman in her 30s was still born in the late 70s or early 80s, and so, there is a chance you will still have things in common or things that you can relate to or talk about. However, a 20-something is much too young for you, so give it up! Moreover, let’s be honest, for most of you out there, the only reason a 20-something would want you is for your money. So, trust me, when I say, “Stay away!”
I recommend you make two lists: A “Things to do Before I Die” list and a “Things I have Done” list. First, let’s talk about the “Things to do Before I Die” list. I refuse to call it a Bucket List, because, as far as I know, I am not dying! My list has 100 items on there, which might seem overwhelming, but I recommend at least 50. You decide the variety of things you want on your list. However, I suggest that you do not make it all about travel. For example, while I do have “Visit all 50 states” on my list, I also have things like “Swim with a dolphin”, “Get married again”, “See Aerosmith live”, and “Be an extra in a movie”, just to name a few. Variety is the key. Make the list and try to do the things on it. Keep track of when and where you accomplish each one. Start on it today!
Now, once you make that list, you are going to say, “Wow, I haven’t really done anything in my life!” That is why you make the list of “Things I Have Done.” Once again, variety is the key. For example, I have things like “Given a graduation speech”, “Been to the Indy 500”, “Met an astronaut”, and “Visited the Basketball Hall of Fame”. Start your list and, before you know it, you will find that you actually have done quite a lot!
Last, but not least, do not waste time!
While I am not a particular fan of the “YOLO”—You Only Live Once—phrase that the youth of today are obsessed with, it does have some relevance to a man over 50. How long will you live? You don’t know! I don’t know! I often think things like, Wow, if I live as long as my dad, I only have 22 years left. Or, if I live as long as my mother, I would have died a year ago! So, get out there and do things!
I made my “Things I Want to Do before I Die” list about five years ago and have only accomplished eight of them. I need to get on the ball! You need to get on the ball! Do the things on your list! Find time for that trip! Contact that long lost friend! Replace the things in your life that make you unhappy or that cause stress with the things that make you happy! Believe me; you will be healthier and happier for it!
There you have it. Nothing complicated or Earth shattering about my ideas. However, these are the things I plan on doing, because I plan on my life after 50 being just as wonderful as my life before. Good luck to you as you enter yours!
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