Reframing the Concept of Aging - older hands typing on a keyboard

Reframing the Concept of Aging

Len Glassman
April 12, 2023
March 22, 2023

This blog post was written by Len Glassman, Fitness Coach at Nivati. You can see more of their content on the Nivati platform and on the Nivati blog. If you want to learn more about Nivati, click here

Age is just a number, so the saying goes, and these days, the concept of aging is getting lots of attention! No matter what Generation it is called or referred to—from Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials, Generation Z to Gen Alpha—the one common characteristic they all have in common is aging.  

How does the issue of age and aging affect you personally and professionally? What are your views on aging as they relate to your life, circumstances, and experiences? Do you embrace the concept of aging or ignore it and fight like heck to stop aging in its tracks? 

On the one hand, we cannot feel ourselves aging, yet we know it is happening every single day. Like it or not, it changes our bodies, thoughts, decisions, and purpose. Just think about all the age-related milestones in your own life and throughout one’s lifetime! From births and birthdays, the teenage years to finally getting your driver’s license, graduations, careers, family celebrations, and so on and so forth, everything and everyone is impacted by and evolves around age.

An interesting personal observation about aging is that most people look, feel, and act years younger than their chronological age. Frequently this behavior is unintentional—we tend not to think about our age until it becomes a focal point in our lives or perhaps someone or something causes us to consider our age and stage of life, such as getting our driver’s license, voting eligibility, school graduations, and entering or retiring from the workforce, to name a few. Or perhaps someone mentions “how good you look”, or quite simply your body starts to change and function differently.

Each of the above scenarios and countless other age-related situations draw upon societal and personal life experiences. When you think about it, our age is a collection and culmination of all our life experiences, that is neatly wrapped up into a 365-day year, as a way to keep track of everything and everyone!

Making the Most of Today

So how do we make the absolute best of the years, months, days, and minutes we have? What can we do to improve the way in which we think about our own age and the age of others, whether it be socially, professionally, or family related? How do we reframe our thoughts and bias towards age and aging to create more synergy, harmony, and rewarding relationships personally and professionally, between people of different age groups? 

The workplace is a great place to learn about and explore inter-generational skills, perspectives, knowledge, and networks. In addition to improved workplace environments, cultures and learning opportunities, one area in particular, where great strides have been made by younger generations, is feeling comfortable voicing concerns about mental health in the workplace—a subject previously considered taboo by some older colleagues.   

There are so many ways to look and think about age and the implications and importance it plays throughout our lifetime. When viewed through the lens of Nivati’s six pillars of wellness your age, both chronologically (i.e., the number of years you have been alive) and biologically (i.e. how old your cells and tissues are, based on your overall physical condition), significantly impacts and plays an important role within each pillar of wellness.

, your age, both chronologically (i.e., the number of years you have been alive) and biologically (i.e. how old your cells and tissues are, based on your overall physical condition), significantly impacts and plays an important role within each pillar of wellness.

Aging and the Workplace

Your age is your here and now. Whether you are just entering the workforce and starting to live on your own, or are a bit more seasoned, so to speak, there are opportunities, pitfalls, and rewarding opportunities at each stage of your work life. A key to embracing your work age is not to hold back because you feel that you’re too young or too old.  

Easier said than done right? Especially when it comes to your age, your work, and the workplace. There are so many potential pitfalls and challenges, it is literally and figuratively hard to wrap our heads around it! 

Just think about technological advances over the past 20 years—from computer laptops and cellphones to Zoom calls and webinars—and all the ways in which work and the workforce have changed. It is no wonder a lot of older adult workers feel technologically challenged; scared to death in fact, they will hit the wrong button or click on the wrong screen and be zapped out of a meeting! Conversely, what about the person just starting out in the workforce, having little to no prior work-related experience, no understanding of what corporate culture means, and perhaps never having stepped foot in an actual office?

So how do we bridge these generational gaps in the workplace to foster harmony, create career opportunities, and simply make for a happier and healthier work environment?     

Bridging Generational Gaps at Work

Below are a few practical team-building tips to help bridge the gap between you, your coworkers, and your employer:

  1. Create meaningful one-on-one mutual mentoring relationships

Pairing up co-workers of differing ages can build intergenerational awareness and break down misperceptions. Explore the concept of two-way, mutual mentoring, where workplace insights and tips surrounding technology, culture, and work-related years of experience can be shared in both directions.

  1. Experiment with different communication styles and comfort levels

Over the last few years, the influence of technology on basic work functions has exploded. But it is worth bearing in mind that different generations can have vastly different experiences and comfort levels with today’s virtual tools. If you find that your older adult co-worker is unresponsive, confused, or agitated by a technology-dependent form of communication, try using some old-school communication tools (hint: pick up the phone or send a professionally worded email). This approach also guarantees that everyone is on a level playing field, feels comfortable, valued, and involved in your business mission.

Aging happens to all of us, each and every day! Shifting the concept of aging from an ongoing series of losses to an awareness of the possibilities and opportunities it presents, is a first step in the right direction.

Let’s all work together to tell a brand-new story about aging!

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Len Glassman
Len Glassman
Len Glassman is Virtual Fitness and Health Nutritionist Provider with Nivati. He is a Master Level Personal Trainer and Certified Health Nutritionist, with over 25 years of professional experience. Prior to venturing into the health and wellness world, he served as a private and corporate attorney. Len is dedicated to helping people achieve and maintain optimal health and fitness, at all stages of life, through restorative and functional training principles designed to help people move and feel better, as well as excel physically, emotionally and behaviorally, well beyond their chronological years. Len believes that, in order to get people to move, you must create a movement, something bigger than yourself that people from all walks of life can relate to.