20 Kickass Things About Being 40 (And Beyond)


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Earlier this week an article called 40 Effed Up Things About Being 40 came across my Facebook feed and the crowd went wild. The author of the post, Amy Wruble, from Carriage Before Marriage is awesome, but in this case I’m going to disagree with her.

I thought 40 ROCKED.

As I told one of my best girlfriends, I see it like this:

  • At 20 we’re just learning how to ask questions about life.
  • At 30, we’re just starting to figure out what the big questions are.
  • At 40, we’re finally learning some of the answers.

That’s a big deal.

I’d met my soulmate at 35 and by the time I turned 40, I’d married him. I’ll give him some credit for this list because he brought me tons of peace, but a lot of it just comes with age.

20 Kickass Things About Being 40:

1. Better coping skills.

If you’re paying attention at all in the years prior, you will have developed some coping skills by this time. Here’s a Coping & Stress Management Skills test to see how you’re doing.

2. More disposable income (usually).

In the recent economy, this isn’t always a given, but at the very least, you are further along your career path and have a variety of skills that earn money.

3. More patience with most people.

The older I get, the more understanding I am that people must learn lessons at their own pace. If they want my advice, they’ll ask for it…and they still might disregard it.

4. Less patience with stupid people.

Good health and time are the most precious of commodities. I’ve gotten much less patient with people who hinder me in either area.

5. More knowledge.

Recent studies show that most older people’s brains don’t decline with age. The brains of the elderly are only slower because they know more. It’s like searching through a very full hard drive and sometimes you’ve got to wait longer for the answer.

6. Less fear of failure.

You’ve likely tried and failed at many things by now. People are more confident that failure is not the end of the world at this point in their lives.

7. Better parties.

Perhaps it goes with the “more disposable income” but I’ve noticed that the parties are much more creative and engaging as the years build.

8. Less inhibition.

In the teens and early twenties, a lack of inhibition often comes from various substances. I think as people age, their fear of public embarrassment wanes and they just do what makes them happy (even if it’s odd).

9. Longer-term friendships.

At this point, some of your friendships are old enough to go out to the bar and have a drink. The people you’ve kept this long, you’ll likely keep your whole life. These people KNOW you, and they laugh when you let it all hang out.

10. Well-defined B.S. meters.

The older you get, the quicker you sniff out B.S.

11. Gratitude.

Age makes you take less for granted. Ergo, you’re more grateful for simple everyday things (like waking up).

12. A sense of urgency.

Time is precious, and it slips by faster the older you get. As the birthdays increase, so does the urgency to get the important things done.

13. More orgasmic (especially for us females).

Enough said.

14. A better wine palate.

I drank crap wine back in the day. Thankfully, with age, your palate develops and you start drinking MUCH better wine.

15. Better vacations.

16. You stop competing with twenty-somethings and start trying to better yourself.

17. Better conversation.

I share these “better conversations” at More Cowbell. So far, nothing tops the Almost X-Rated Garage Sale and those women were in their sixties.

18. Better insurance rates, at least for the car.

19. Better credit (usually).

It’s a shame credit card companies swarm young people before they’re earning (and understanding) money. I plan on teaching my daughter early so she can avoid credit trouble.

20. Better understanding of the world.

My lil’ sis is fifteen years younger and she told me once that the best piece of advice I ever passed on was, “Make sure you have at least a thousand dollars in reserve. For some reason, when things go wrong, they usually cost at least a grand.”

* * * * *

Sure, there’s downsides to getting older. You used to be able to work out twice a month and stay in decent shape. Now you have to do it 3-4 times a week just to keep up. Your back (and various other body part) hurt like a mother some mornings. But I think the benefits outweigh the costs.

Do you have items to add to the “Kickass Things” list? What about on the “not so kickass” side of the fence? Continue the discussion at the #SocialIn hashtag on Twitter or SocialInDC on Facebook!

~ Jenny

About Jenny Hansen

By day, Jenny provides training and social media marketing for an accounting firm. By night she writes humor, memoir, women’s fiction and short stories. After 18 years as a corporate software trainer, she’s delighted to sit down while she works.

When she’s not at her personal blog, More Cowbell, Jenny can be found on Twitter at JennyHansenCA or at Writers In The Storm.

© 2014 Jenny Hansen. All content on this page is protected by copyright. If you would like to use any part of this, please contact me at the above links to request permission.

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