Successful Aging

According to a website I found online, the first line reads “If I’m alive, I’m successful!” This technically means that you are successful because you are still alive, however if your still alive and suffering from disease does that mean you are ageing successfully? Among the features people identify with successful aging are the following: physical health, financial security, productivity/employment, independence, coping well, and staying involved in activities and with people who bring meaning and support. In the article you provided, it states that early ideas about successful aging grew out of two conflicting theories: disengagement theory and activity theory. The disengagement theory proposes that successful aging requires a withdrawal from activities and social interaction, activity theory suggests the opposite. For activity theorists, optimal aging involves remaining active and continuing interpersonal relationships for as long as possible. Also another perspective in the article it talks about how successful aging is a multi-dimensional approach this is very similar to what the website I found talks about. It encompasses many things. The third major perspective is the model of selective optimization with compensation.

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According to this model, people become more selective in choosing activities and interests as they grow older. Although they become more selective, they seek to maximize their chances of achieving desirable outcomes or goals within their selected domains. This goes along very well with what we talked about in class and what the website that I found discusses. Basically all of this information lines up with what we learned in class and what I personally think it means to age successfully. Personally I feel that being free from disease, maintaining relationships, doing the things that make you happy, financial security, and good coping skills. It seems that almost all the information on successful aging takes a multidimensional approach. As I am getting older I want to take accountability for all of these things, that means saving money for when I get older, establishing healthy habits now that that I can be free from disease, and establish lifelong relationships. As long as you cant maintain these things throughout your life I feel that you will have successfully aged.

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