Benefits of Aging

Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, despite its bad press, aging is not all negative. In fact, as Maurice Chevalier once infamously said, “Old age isn’t so bad when you consider the alternative.” So when looking at it like that, what are the benefits of aging?

Firstly, consider all the discounts to which seniors are entitled. Going to a restaurant, visiting a museum, taking in a movie, all of these places tend to give discounts to seniors. In addition, the AARP negotiates discounts for its members (who can join as young as 50) which means that even youthful seniors are entitled to these discounts.

From 62 years old, those who are traveling can often get 15 percent of various modes of travel including Amtrak, Greyhound and the National Park Service. In addition, there is the lifetime pass one is eligible for at this age to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites for a mere $10.

While taxes are burdensome throughout one’s life, when one ages (specifically over 65), they are entitled to various tax breaks. Indeed in 2016, the standard deduction for 65 year olds (and older) was $7,850. For a couple (as per certain conditions), it is $15,100. In addition, medical expenses over 7.5 percent of adjusted gross income can be deducted.

In addition to the financial perks, an article in SmartLiving examined the emotional benefits. Think about it: as a youngster one is usually self-conscious, emotionally more unstable and are less able to see the bigger picture. But as one ages, these issues are reversed. Furthermore, while there is a constant fear that the brain is going to not be as effective as it was in one’s youth, our scientific research is indicating that this is not necessarily the case, so long as we use it. It has actually been found that brains “continue to grow neurons as we age and reshape itself in response to what it learns.” Thus, we only lose it, if we don’t use it. Age does not have to be a determining factor in and of itself.

So think about it like this: if you’re not dead, you will age. And rather than look at the negatives of this fact of life, why not embrace all the positives aging can offer?