If you’re in your 60s, 70s, or 80s, wouldn’t it be great to feel 20 years younger? Imagine feeling like you’re in your 40s, 50s, or 60s again. It sounds too good to be true. That usually means it is. But in this case, it’s not. You really can feel 20 years younger.

I’ll explain this by way of an experiment that was conducted many years ago.

A group of researchers recruited around 40 people in their 70s. These people were to spend a few days at a hotel where their reaction times would be tested.

The people didn’t know what the main experiment was about though. As far as they knew, they’d have their reaction times tested, would complete various tasks, and have their reaction times tested again.

Also, unbeknown to the participants, they had been split into two groups. The first group was going to be treated like typical 70-year-olds (the 70s group). The second group was going to be treated like 50-year-olds (the 50s group).

The experiment began as soon as the participants started arriving at the hotel. When someone from the 70s group arrived, a bellboy would tell them that their suitcase was too heavy for them, so he’d take care of it.

When someone from the 50s group arrived they were left to carry their own suitcases.

As soon as they arrived, they had their reaction times tested in various ways. Both groups performed equally.

Next, the two groups were shown into separate conference rooms. The 70s group were told that they must feel tired after their journey, so they should take a easy and rest for a few hours.

The 50s group were shown what activities were available and were encouraged to take part.

Throughout the next few days, the groups were kept apart. The 70s group were allowed to listen to a radio station that played music of the day. They were encouraged to rest and take it easy while listening to the music. They also had the day’s newspapers to read.

The 50s group also listened to music on the radio. But the music was from 20 years earlier. It was music that was around when they were in their 50s. They were encouraged to get up and dance to the music. They also had newspapers to read, but they were newspapers from 20 years ago.

Their reaction times were tested again at the end of their stay. The reaction times of the 70s group stayed the same.

How about the 50s group? Their reaction times had markedly improved. They had similar reaction times to people in their 50s.

As both groups left the hotel, the researchers noticed that the 50s group were standing straighter and moving faster than the 70s group. In fact, they looked just like people in their 50s.

Just a few days of being in an environment where they were treated like they were in their 50s actually made them feel like they were. Even in objective tests.

The takeaways

#1 — Don’t allow yourself to be treated as an old person

If someone treats you like you’re old, you’ll feel old. So next time someone tells you to sit down and take it easy because of your age, tell them you don’t need to. Tell them you still feel like you’re 21 and have no need to take it easy.

More importantly, don’t treat yourself as an old person. If you’re 70 and someone asks your age, tell them you’re 50. If you do this regularly, you’ll begin to feel like you’re much younger.

#2 — Listen to music from your youth

I always feel younger and more energetic after listening to music from my youth. I feel the energy that I had back then. It sounds weird, but it really works for me.

#3 — Take part in activities that younger people do

Don’t think that you’re too old to do certain things in life. If you’re 70 and want to skydive, then go do it. Don’t be concerned that everyone else is under 50.

I know some older people that no longer go traveling because they think they’re too old. There are generally not happy people. They look and feel old.

I also know people that are older than them that intend to travel until they drop. Even though they’re chronologically older, to all intents and purposes, they are much younger.

Remember that age is just a number. If your chronological age is 70, you can still feel and act like you’re 50, 40, or even 30 if you choose to.

Choose to be young. Don’t choose to be old.

You’ll feel healthier and happier if you make the right choice.