Harnessing the Power of Positive Thinking

Turning Back the Clock: Harnessing the Power of Positive Thinking

It’s common knowledge that we start to slow down as we get older. But that doesn’t have to mean we can’t have an active aging life. We can still learn new things, we can still have adventures. Some things may be slower, but other things are better. 

Perhaps we’ve learned a few things during our life and our wisdom can be our strength. We can focus on our strengths and compensate for whatever is giving us problems. We are a source of traditions, stories of how things used to be, and the insight we have gained from our decades of living. We’ve seen fads come and go, and then come back again. We can discern what is really important from what is a fad. We’ve lived through the 60s, the Cold War, Watergate, and other historical events and we can give our perceptions to the younger generation.

Famous Successful Active Agers

There are many people who have found success late in life. They kept a positive attitude and did what was interesting to them:

Colonel Harland Sanders

Kentucky Fried chicken was started when Harland Sanders was age 65. He had a variety of jobs throughout his life and owned various restaurants and motels. When his restaurant closed he got the idea to start franchising his invention of pressure-frying chicken with 7 herbs and spices. At first, he had to work hard to convince people to open restaurants, but the concept took off.

Laura Ingalls Wilder

Laura Ingalls Wilder started writing her Little House on the Prairie books when she was 65. Her last book was published over 10 years later.

Estelle Getty

An unknown actress, Estelle Getty was cast as Sophia in the TV show The Golden Girls at age 63.

Not So Famous Successful Active Agers

Nola Ochs

She was the oldest person to graduate from college. After interrupting getting her degree with marriage and a family, she started taking community college classes, then moved away to attend college. One of her classmates was her granddaughter. She was 95 when she got her Bachelor’s degree. She went back to school and got her Master’s degree at age 98.

George Weiss

George was a wallpaper by trade, but his evenings were spent in his basement “dabbling”. He made all sorts of inventions but was never able to sell any of them. Finally, at age 84, he sold a board game he made up called Dabble. It was voted the 2011 Game of the Year Award by Creative Child Magazine in the Family Word Games category

Johanna Quaas

When she was 86 years old Johanna Quaas was certified as the world’s oldest competitive gymnast. She is 96 years old today and continues to do gymnastics.

Positive Thinking

All of these widely successful active agers never gave up. They filled their days with activities that they enjoyed. They didn’t get bogged down with negative thinking. How can you harness the power of positive thinking in your life?

Use Positive Statements

Think about what you are in a positive way. Avoid using words like “don’t” or “not” when thinking about yourself. If you say “I’m strong” that is better than “I’m not weak”. “I’m agreeable” instead of “I don’t fight with people.”

Think About What You Can Control

Focus on things you have some influence over instead of what other people are doing,  Concentrate on what you can control and make those things as perfect as possible. Let everything else go.

Talk About What You Want As A Fact In The Present Tense

Instead of saying “I wish I could make new friends” say “I am working on making new friends”. This is what you are actually doing right now. Think “I am doing OK right now” instead of “I hope I’ll be ok tomorrow.”

Think About What Is Going Right

Concentrate on the good things instead of dwelling on everything that is, or could be, wrong. If something is going wrong, take steps to make it right. Don’t just sit and dwell on it


Think about all of your blessings and what is going right for you. Then be grateful for that. Some people keep a gratitude journal where they write down everything that they are happy for and express thanks for that. Be thankful for what you have rather than dwelling on what you don’t.

Find Positive People

Be around people who bring you up and look at things positively. That will help you keep a good attitude.

Positive thinking won’t magically improve everything. We still have to work on problem areas. It’s just so much easier if we feel light and if we are actually capable of accomplishing what we set out to do. Negative thinking can stall us at the starting line. Strong emotions can spur us into impulsive action, or be the fuel to improve our situation. Positive thinking can help keep us going when the going gets rough. At SeniorThrive! We want to help you stay positive.


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