In the future, I get up in the mornings “for my vocation, it gives me meaning and direction into old age”.
We asked, you answered.
How would you describe yourself?
Mid-30s, white, female, quit my job, on the verge of moving abroad and setting up my own business there.
Imagine you are 72, 80 or even 99 years old: How and with whom do you live together?
I live with my husband and friends in some kind of shared flat where we have pooled our money to hire 3 people to help us around the clock with cleaning, cooking meals and caring for us, because at 99, not everything is possible anymore without getting help from outside.
We came up with this idea so that we wouldn’t have to live in a completely overpriced home without the possibility to shape our lives or maintaining self-determination, and so that our children wouldn’t have to sacrifice themselves for our care.
Who are the most important people in your life and how do you spend time with them?
My husband and my friends are the most important people in my life. I travel a lot with them, do sports, get to know new cultures and try to discover or do something completely new together with them every week.
Of course, my children and grandchildren are also very important to me, but they live their own lives and I travel with them once a year and also see them twice a year for family celebrations. Sometimes more often, but without constraint and rather spontaneously, because as an agile and adventurous grandma, I am on the road a lot, busy and have my own projects all over the world.
I also like to be alone from time to time to write, read and prepare my next seminars.
What is your sex and love life like in the future?
More active than I hoped for, full of love, trust and tenderness
How do you manage to stay mentally and physically fit?
I meditate, do yoga, go swimming and walking. I like listening to podcasts and keeping in touch with my friends and acquaintances from all over the world, so I continue to get input that stretches my brain.
How do you afford everyday life in the future?
Luckily, when I turned 50, the government introduced the unconditional basic income, which allowed me to invest something for my old age. Most of the money has gone into my private pension, but I invested in ETFs, cryptos, NFTs and also real art and real estate much earlier.
I also work 1-2 days a week into old age, as I have almost always been self-employed and my job fulfils me so much that the things I work on continue to drive me.
In the future, what do you get up for in the morning?
For my vocation, it gives me meaning and direction into old age. Thanks to having clarified the whys for myself early on, everything else in my life has developed in exactly the way that serves me and my life. That’s why in my late 90s I’m a fulfilled and happy person who is able to focus on the positive things, because even today, I still see the purpose of keep on going and thus have a reason to get up. I just kept going and going, and the rest fell into place. I still try to do that today. Running has become a bit more difficult in my late 90s, but now I roll comfortably in my wheelchair towards my new goals and don’t –like most old people– look back with melancholy to what I miss.
If you had to tell a young friend about all the things you’ve done right while ageing and would thus recommend to them… What would they be?
Clarify the whys early on, live your life and not the life of others and question early on what your goal in life is. Don’t wait for a terrible blow of fate to clarify the meaning of life for you, but tackle it now. Realise that you can only change the outside by changing the inside and not the other way round. Remind yourself often that you only have this one life and try to see stressful situations and problems much more often from a retrospective, you’ll see how they suddenly become small and irrelevant. Try things out, make mistakes, that’s the only way to feel alive.
– Original version: German –
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