Posted by: drdata921 | October 25, 2013

Are You Getting Older and Wiser or Just Older

Feeble, aged, people almost to their knees
Complain about the present using memories
Never found their pot of gold
Wrinkled hands pound weary holes
Each line screams out you’re old, you’re old, you’re old
But nobody’s buying flowers from the flower lady

Song Lyrics from “The Flower Lady” by Phil Ochs

Here is a question for you: Does wisdom come with age? The common logic is that as we get older and as we have experienced life, these experiences make us wiser. This may or may not be true. I know many people who continue to make the same mistakes and don’t seem to learn from them – they live, but they do not learn. As Albert Einstein once noted, insanity is defined as repeatedly doing the same thing, but expecting a different outcome. I am sure that you know some people who do just that.

Also, wisdom does not seem to be limited to older adults. I have a 25 year old daughter who is probably the single wisest person I have known. She has an understanding of life well beyond her years – a wisdom I would be more than happy to gain as I enter my senior years.

However, what is the truth behind age and wisdom? As it turns out, research has supported the notion that with age comes wisdom. Some of it might be experience, but a significant portion seems to be due to biology. A University of California, San Diego professor studied 3,000 people between the ages of 60 and 100. He found that these older adults were “less dopamine dependent” making them less impulsive and emotional than younger age groups because of slower response in the brain. Older adults seem to be more thoughtful and less emotionally driven in how they respond to the world, particularly negative stimuli around them. In addition, brain scans have shown greater activity in four regions of the brain by older adults associated with wisdom when compared to younger adults. So, there is evidence that with age comes wisdom despite the idiosyncratic traits of some people that hold them back.

OK, that’s the science. However, beyond the research, what is the common wisdom about wisdom? I was able to dig up some quotes on the topic that might inform, inspire, and amuse you:


With everything that has happened to you, you can either feel sorry for yourself or treat what has happened as a gift. Everything is either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose.

Wayne Dyer – Author and Motivational Speaker

All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.

J. R. R. Tolkien – Writer

You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.

Aristotle – Philosopher

In three words, I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: IT GOES ON!

Robert Frost – Poet

The most creative act you will ever undertake is the act if creating yourself.

Deepak Chopra – Author

Isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes, but when you look back, everything is different?

C. S. Lewis – Writer

You have to start by changing the story you tell yourself about getting older. The minute you say to yourself “Time is everything and I am going to make sure that time is used the way I dream it should be used.” Then you’ve got a whole different story.

Diane Sawyer – News Journalist


As I have grown older, I have learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake.

You don’t get to choose when or how you are going to die. You can only choose how you are going to live.

The older I get, the less I care about what people think of me. Therefore, the older I get, the more I enjoy life.

Sometimes the best way to be happy is to learn to let go of things you tried hard to hold on to that are no longer good for you.

I decided to take an aerobics class – I bent, twisted, gyrated, and jumped up and down for an hour. But, by the time I got my leotard on, the class was over.

In life, no matter how old you are, it’s never too late to make new beginnings. In fact, the very best may very well be yet to come!

Live your life and forget your age!

I believe that everyone else my age is an adult whereas I am merely in disguise.

My mind says I am in my twenties. My body says yeah, you wish!

If you laugh a lot, when you get older, the wrinkles will be in the right places.

One day, you will be just a memory for some people. Do your best to be a good one.

To be old and wise, first you need to be young and stupid.

Life isn’t about finding yourself. It’s about finding who god created you to be.

Do not regret growing older. It’s a privilege denied to many.

We are not too old until regrets start taking the place of dreams.

The trick is to enjoy life. Don’t wish away your days waiting for better ones ahead.



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