What's it like to turn 40, 50, 60 and then 70?

There is something to look forward to in each Decade

Remember your excitement on your 21st birthday, then less excitement at 30, whoa then 40 rushes up, then 50 - life slips passed so quickly, you make 60, and wonder what happened and then suddenly you are 70. It seems as though the next day you’re 80 and then touch 90.

So many people dread turning 40, as yes it is a turning point, you are an adult, you know things, you've learnt things and people look to you for answers.

It came and went with not much fanfare in my life, but I did notice how much more centered I was, I had experience, I had knowledge, I knew what mattered and what was a total waste of energy, I was mature and had come into my own as a woman.

I was more sensible, competent, thoughtful, caring and empathetic. Much more so than in my 20’s when life was mostly all about me, and we were self conscious about everything, our bodies, our sexuality, our careers, and our futures.

In our thirties, we become more assertive, worry about our body image as it changes from what it was when we were younger. We still sort of care what people think and their opinions, but we are beginning not to sweat the small stuff.

Looking back on my early thirties, twenties and teen years, I have a quiet giggle, youth is really wasted on the young. They say if you've got it flaunt it. When I was young and had it, I was too embarrassed to flaunt it and now when I don’t care what people think, it's no longer there to flaunt!

Turning 40

So for those of you knocking on the door of 40, here’s what you can look forward to:

1. Confidence in who you are. What ever you’ve lost of your youth, you have gained so much more in return. You're happy with who you are, you don’t have to please everyone and don’t have to keep up with fashion. You adapt fashion to suit what makes you feel good.

2. You have learned so much about life and people. You can stand on your own two feet and you would rather be single than in a bad relationship. You know marriage is hard work, but you both work hard at it.

3. You are no longer worried about the opinions of people, you do what you know is best and right for the circumstances. You don’t put up with nonsense, bad behavior, and walk away from something or someone that’s not part of your value system.

4. You realise money is a tool that is great to have, but it’s not everything. You may want to splurge on someone else, like sending your parents on a cruise.

5. You may think that divorce is the end of the world; it's not, it is the beginning of another chance, a new life, where all the doors are open and opportunities beckon.

6. You know debt is toxic and you are aware of the pleasure you get out off clearing it.

7. Balance in everything is important and you enjoy spending time at home with family.

8. The forty of yesterday, is not the forty of today. You are still young, not yet middle aged, and in any case they are all just numbers, your mindset is what makes you who you are.

9. Your facial features are softening and the little lines lie in the areas that bring character to your face. You miss the young skin, but feel pride in the life that looks back at you in the mirror.

10. You are aware of your faults, and you accept who you are and have realistic expectations of others in your life.

11. You know what you want, you also know what you don’t want, you are aware of what you will tolerate and what is a deal-breaker.

I have enjoyed greatly the second blooming

that comes when

you finish the life

of the emotions and of personal relations;

and suddenly find - at the age of fifty, say -

that a whole new life

has opened before you,

filled with things you can think about,

study, or read about...

It is as if a fresh sap of ideas

and thoughts was rising in you.

Agatha Christie

What is it like to be 50?

Career wise, you are now standing on top of the hill and can leave many cares and worries behind you. Health becomes important, and practicing better health habits becomes second nature.

Now you look in that mirror and wonder where the years went, while asking how did I end up here so quickly? Take a breath and stop fretting about missing out on life, open the door to another fabulous stage of your life.

Start planning what comes next.

1. You know yourself, you're not afraid to have an opinion, you find it easier to laugh at yourself and take life less seriously.

2. You have wisdom to help you make decisions and you are more at peace and have a greater appreciation of life.

3. Your inner confidence shines through, you are willing to try anything, you enjoy being settled in life, and the extra time and money available to explore new hobbies.

4. You look back on your 40th birthday, and wonder what all the drama was about. You are glad you are not forty anymore. Now you buy more comfortable clothing and shoes, relaxing feels natural, you think about what to do when you retire.

5. You watch your children become wonderful people, whom you like and respect. Try to resist telling them how much you invested in them on their path to awesome, they will find out soon enough with their own children.

6. Try anything that’s new or different while you’re still young and energetic enough to do it. Plan to do more travel, follow up on forgotten dreams and hobbies.

7. Let go of any grudges. It's energy zapping, doesn’t change anything and makes you feel bad. Forgiveness is for the person doing the forgiving, and not the person being forgiven. Count your blessings, enjoy your friends. Get rid of clutter be it people, or things. Work with what’s important, and do work you feel passionate about. Make turning fifty the start of a clean slate.

8. I think the biggest fear of getting old is not being needed, losing one’s relevance. Don’t look behind you, look forward because you will be significant, and your significance shines through the eyes of your children, your friends and the eyes of your grandchildren.

9. You have now learned to trust and value yourself. You are kind to yourself, kind to others. You know that the word ‘No’ is a full sentence and that the sun still rises in the morning when you say it.

10. Anything you have wanted to do and regret not doing – do it now.

What about turning 60?

You are 60and your 40th Birthday was twenty years ago!

Now you know the value of time, and you are wise enough not to waste precious time on people who bring you down. Remove those people whose lives revolve around negativity, those who gossip or hit below the belt, or drop you when something better comes along.

You'll still forty inside your head, but perhaps need more time to do the same things. Your memory is a little selective about trivialities, but that's okay. You look for things that keep your brain stimulated which in turn makes you interesting.

  • Health is important, by 60 you know this as no doubt you have lost a few people along the way. So exercise, which now is about endurance, some strengthening, balance and stretching.
  • You have everything you need, the only gifts you need is your loved ones presence and time with them.
  • Cultivate optimism, look for solutions to problems, persist even when things don’t go well, understand the power of gratitude.
  • Explore activities you can do by yourself and learn to enjoy your own company.
  • Let your hair go gray, and look spectacular. You are in no danger of dying young, and you cannot have a mid-life crises, and your character lines are now wrinkles. Think about all the things you have lived through, the history made in your lifetime. The first heart transplant, the first man on the moon, computers, cell phones – there is so much, rejoice in your experiences.
  • You’ve already done all the hard stuff in life, puberty, career, children, mortgages, marriage – now you get to just do the fun stuff, what you want to do, when you want to it.
  • You can say the most outrageous things to people at any time and get away with it as they just think you are eccentric.
  • Abraham Lincoln said, “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count, it’s the life in your years.”
  • So, in your sixties, appreciate the love and support of your family, the jokes, laughter and experiences that come your way and be grateful for the beautiful life and everything it has offered you to date.

Have some fun watching dance moves from 1950's todate

Different Ideas to think about in your Retirement

Lend a Hand as a Global Volunteer.

The trips range from one to three weeks and you choose where you want to go and how you want to volunteer. It is rewarding and you can do this anywhere in the world – so you can get out there and make a difference.

Learn to Dance and explore the mystery of Latin American dances

The tango originated in Argentina and is one of the most dramatic dances. There is also the Cha Cha, Rumba, and so many others. Perhaps the romance of the Waltz or Quickstep takes your fancy. Go out there and meet new like minded people while getting great exercise.

Celebrities into their 60's, 70's, 80's, +

Helen Mirren is 68
Signourey Weaver is 62
Tina Turner - 71
Harrison Ford - 71
Liam Neeson - 61
Burt Reynolds - 77
Raquel Welch - 73
Olivia Newton-John - 65
Sean Connery - 83
Dolly Parton - 68
Ann-Margret - 72
Susan Sarandon - 67
Mark Harman - 62
Betty White - 92
Clint Eastwood - 82
Willie Nelson - 81

What about 70 and beyond?

A few thoughts on turning 70 and going toward 80.

You have finally run out of things to learn the hard way and like George Burns you say, “If I’d known I was going to live this long, I’d taken better care of myself.”

Occasionally you see expensive antiques that you threw away many years ago, and now it’s the doctor who tells you to slow down, not the police.

To be 70 is to be born before Pearl Harbor, to have lived through the raging World War ll, the Cold War, Korea, Kennedy and the Cuban Missile crisis, Fidel Castro, the Bay of Pigs and Vietnam.

You revelled in the birth of Rock and Roll, heard the quieting of the Big Band sound. Competent medicine was born such as penicillin, sulphur drugs and other antibiotics.

Telephones changed from ones you stood next to, to the cellphone carried with you. Television arrived, ATM’s, online shopping, laser surgery, stents to keep blood vessels open and the pacemaker (in fact you may even have one).

You had lived almost half you life when you learnt the other meanings of :

  • an application – it wasn’t for a job
  • A keyboard didn’t only belong to a piano,
  • A web was not only a spider’s home
  • A virus, meant your computer was sick, not you with the flu
  • A hard drive, wasn’t just a long road trip

You know that America’s most pressing domestic problem is a consequence of success – unimaginable 70 years ago.

You are now officially old, and the bucket list is gone as you are living each day to the fullest.

What lies ahead?

The pleasure you get from your grandchildren, and seeing the wonder on their faces as you show them something for the first time, such as patting a horse, playing with a puppy, throwing stones in the lake, a walk in the park, putting the Angel on the Christmas tree. These everyday things will make you feel 10 years younger as you rediscover the world and its beauty seen through eyes of a child.

So revel in the young, they bring excitement and invigoration to your life as they experience, learn and see life for the first time.

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Comments 20 comments

DDE profile image

DDE 2 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

The life of a forty year old is me and that is so true about me. Confident and don't care about others say. Interesting about the ages and what one is faced with and also experiences.

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

DDE, You were so quick, thank you so much for being there. Your confidence shines through in your writing!

FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

This was a delightful look at everything we can look forward to (or are already experiencing). There's no reason to fear getting older. It happens to the best of us. One of the worst things I see is people trying to over-nip and over-tuck their age away and they end up looking ridiculous. I recently saw a photo of Victoria Principal from her Dallas days vs. now. How sad. Instead of owning her wrinkles and confidently reveling in her wisdom, she had puffed out lips and plastic skin and looked like a caricature of former herself. I liked how you emphasized the attitude, experience, health, and personal gifts. We concentrate too much on the packaging.

heidithorne profile image

heidithorne 2 years ago from Chicago Area

You are spot on with each decade! I'm glad I'm not in my 20s, 30s or 40s anymore. I've never wanted to be younger again. I like having the experience and confidence to see things more clearly. Thanks for the celebration of aging! Voted up and sharing!

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

heidithorne, Thank you so much for visiting and commenting - it's funny isn't it, as we get comfortable in our present decade we don't want to go back to the previous ones. We just have to hope that feeling continues!

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

FlourishAnyway, Thank you for visiting and for your great comment. People such as Victoria Principal are busy focusing on history, instead of enjoying where they are now. What a waste, she was so lovely looking. I saw Mary Tyler Moore, she looked as you described Victoria, her face didn't move, then you have someone like Betty White who looks just great because she left her face alone. Thank you again.

MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean

Great article, Shelley. Halfway between 60 and 70, with my hair turned gray, I enjoy the look back at life as it happened just the way you say it did. Now, I cherish the "life in my years" and the life in every day. What a privilege to experience these senior years. Thanks to God!

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

MsDora,What a wonderful comment, lovely that you rejoice in your years as do I. Thank you for visiting, I so appreciate it.

Sandra Eastman profile image

Sandra Eastman 2 years ago from Robbinsdale MN

I have to say you penned this one right on Shelley. I'm still dying my hair as still need that small vanity but my grandchildren are my life. Thanks for a great hub.

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

Sandra Eastman, Thank you for chiming in here, and you are lucky to have grandchildren, I'm still waiting - but enjoy other people's kids at the moment.

Sandra Eastman profile image

Sandra Eastman 2 years ago from Robbinsdale MN

Spent all evening with those precious ones. They are a real treasure

travmaj profile image

travmaj 2 years ago from australia

oh my, how the years fly by without even noticing. Love the George Burns quote - “If I’d known I was going to live this long, I’d taken better care of myself.” I can hardly believe that my children have children - so precious. I want more. I'd like to turn the clock back just now and then. Ok, just have to make the most of each day. Great hub.

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

travmaj, Thank you so much for dropping by and for the delightful comment. Love the little ones too and glad to meet you.

Easy Exercise profile image

Easy Exercise 2 years ago from United States


I can relate - age is front and center unfortunately for me. I look in the mirror and see the wrinkles - but your hub made me smile - I needed those great laughs! Thank you!

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

Easy Exercise, Thank you for popping in and commenting. Glad the hub made you smile. With your vocation, you will always look and act 20 years younger than you are, so I wouldn't worry if I were you. Been over to visit you Kelly, and I am looking forward to many more visits.

Lady Guinevere profile image

Lady Guinevere 2 years ago from West Virginia

Wow these are great! I am going towards 60 now and my father just passed away and he was 76. I am in awe of his life and in awe and reflection of my own life. I stand thinking about my own mortality right now. The years do go by fast. I feel like I am on one of those people movers that they have in airports. I vote up and across the board and will share this.

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

Lady Guinevere, thank you for commenting and your very generous shares. I appreciate it. It hard to think about your own mortality, as the years go past so quickly. My mother is turning 86 this year - and my father died 3 years ago. Love your people movers analogy LOL.

swilliams profile image

swilliams 2 years ago from Arizona

What a unique and insightful article CyberShelly I really like your 60's 'For Now you know the value of time, and you are wise enough not to waste precious time on people who bring you down. Remove those people whose lives revolve around negativity-' Good stuff! Voted up! And Tweeted out!

Beth Eaglescliffe profile image

Beth Eaglescliffe 2 years ago from UK

What an interesting article this is. I can identify with the stages in life you describe. I'm looking forward to growing old disgracefully as per that well known poem.

"When I am an old woman I shall wear purple

With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me" etc.

CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago Author

swilliams Thank you for leaving such a marvellous comment. I appreciate your time and kind votes.

Beth Eaglescliffe, There is no better way to grow old, than disgracefully. LOL

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