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Take it from the Elderly: Life Advice from the Oldest and Wisest

We’re not sure if you’ve seen the Channel 4 programme ‘Old People’s Home for 4-Year-Olds’, but we certainly recommend it if you haven’t. In the show, one of the UK’s biggest retirement villages opens its doors to children aged 3 and 4, to explore what the very young can learn from the elderly, and vice-versa. The results were overwhelmingly positive, with the older generation receiving a significant boost to their physical and mental health, and the young forming lasting and nurturing relationships.

Having witnessed the life-changing results for ourselves, we’re delighted to join up with local schools and community groups to encourage intergenerational relationships. This will help our residents stay connected to the communities they have spent many years living in and give young people the benefit of some sage life advice.

There are certainly times when a little life advice from the elderly can really come in handy. After all, they’ve been there and done it before. With this in mind, we canvassed our residents to see what advice they’d pass down, and so here are some sagely bits of advice that could help you:

  1. Take care of your body, you could need it for the next 100 years!

Take care of your body as much as you can. We know that regular exercise, eating well and being aware of changes in our bodies is incredibly important. And, avoiding putting too much strain on the back, the hips and the knees should be avoided.

  1. Get back to basics

In this world brimming with new technology and advancements, it’s sometimes easy to get swept up in it all. We might spend so much time on the phone, texting or sharing pictures with our loved ones, that we forget to simply sit down and have a conversation with someone. Get back to basics, put down the phone, and connect with your friends and family by having a hearty discussion. This could be in the sitting room, while going outdoors for a walk or over a cup of tea!

  1. Never stop learning

As children, we spend our lives learning from teachers and parents who know something we don’t. As young adults, that learning process ceases if we don’t identify mentors around us to learn from. To find appropriate mentors, you should look beyond bosses and relatives. Develop relationships with people you respect and observe how they make decisions and accomplish things.

  1. Things don’t make you happy, people do

Some people spend their lives chasing after things, only to realise that once they have them, they’re not as content as they thought they’d be. It’s the people around you who make you happy, so invest your time in them instead.

  1. Have confidence in yourself

One reoccurring piece of life advice from the elderly was to have more confidence in yourself when you’re young. So many young people let a lack of confidence hold them back. You’re only young once, so have the confidence to enjoy it and have fun, but don’t be reckless or detrimentally impact other people’s lives.

  1. Adventuring can lead to happiness

You can’t buy happiness, it’s the experiences that we create with others that truly make life worth living. However, recently it’s been said that one ‘purchase’ that does bring happiness is travelling, seeing new cultures, meeting new people and having new experiences. Travelling can be a hugely fulfilling activity and open our eyes to parts of the world we didn’t know existed. Always keep adventure in your heart, regardless of your age, and you’ll find opportunities that truly surprise and delight you.

  1. Listen to yourself and trust your judgement

Feelings of doubt can creep into your life, especially as you get older. You may not have as much faith in some aspects of your life, and whether you’re making the right choices. The advice from older people is clear – listen to yourself and trust your intuition. You know yourself best, so weigh up the options for whatever you’re pondering over and go for it. Things always seem to resolve themselves, so there is no sense in regretting your decisions.

Where every voice is heard

At Westgate Healthcare, we are here to make a difference. We encourage intergenerational relationships so the young can benefit from life advice from the elderly, and the old can enjoy the company of younger people. Find out more about our award-winning care and get in touch with our team today.  

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