05/05/2022 AGEIST Newsletter 286

One of the things that is evident to us after having done this for 7 years, and having interviewed hundreds of people, is that showing up counts. That may seem obvious, but it is much easier and less risky to say no than to say yes. One of the features of people who are living well at any age is that they are quick to say yes — to helping people, to learning new things, to new experiences, to new ideas. On the flip side, consistently pre-judging and saying no is the fast track to fossilization. If you are like me, you may have to fight that “no” reflex, to put that millisecond of space between the stimulus of the offer and the automatic response. I am rarely disappointed when I say yes. It may not be what I thought it was going to be, but it’s a new memory and a new experience. 

The other thing we notice is that on a scale of 1-100, the hardest part is getting from zero to one, overcoming the inertia of zero. The zero-to-one part is also the most important part — it means that something is happening where previously nothing was. That first 1% move may seem tiny, but it is critical; without it, there is stasis. Taking the same actions, or lack thereof, will get us the same results. As an example, let’s take movement. Say you really know you should exercise, your body needs it, you’ve read all the information on it, but until you actually make a move, nothing will happen. The difference between doing nothing and taking a 5-minute walk is gigantic, even though it is just a 5-minute walk. If this is you, give yourself a hearty pat on the shoulder after your 5-minute stroll because you just made an enormous change. As we like to say, if you are of the go-big-or-go-home school of thought, chances are you will never get out of your comfy chair staring at Netflix. Small changes are small victories, and should be celebrated as such. That marathon entry can wait.

Perfection, procrastination, and paralysis, the three Ps of non-action, are the doom of many a good intention. Tiny movements, tiny victories, are how any endeavor starts. As the sneaker man says, “Just Do It” — whatever your “it” is today.

Until next week,



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David Stewart
David is the founder and face of AGEIST. He is an expert on, and a passionate champion of the emerging global over-50 lifestyle. A dynamic speaker, he is available for panels, keynotes and informational talks at david@agei.st.


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