Staying positive with age

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You know all too well the changes age has brought to your body. That image in the mirror probably doesn't look much like the young woman who used to look back at you.

For women, aging and menopause go hand in hand to the point where it's hard to determine which physical and mental changes stem from the aging process and which are directly linked to a loss of estrogen.

The Mayo Clinic notes the aging process differs from person to person. There's no timetable that everyone follows. Genetics, lifestyle and disease affect the rate at which you age.

Remind yourself that every age is a package deal. You don't gain wisdom without some wrinkles. And growing older does not mean becoming static, nor does it automatically signal decline. Rather, the changes that come with aging can mean opportunities for new ways of thinking and doing. No one is ever too old to learn, hope or renew. Plus, you've earned the right to be selective. For many people, now is the time to finally focus on what you want to rather than what you have to. If looked at in a positive manner, later life can be a full and eventful chapter.

There's no one-size-fits-all solution to staying positive with age. There are as many routes to happiness and a sense of purpose as there are activities and goals to choose from. However, there are some common threads, including maintaining health--both with medical issues and in terms of living a healthy lifestyle--keeping active and socially engaged, and taking time to cultivate mental, emotional spiritual health.