Insights on graceful aging, how to bust negative perceptions around age, and beyond.
Wellness Wire
IN a nutshell
Happy Friday, everyone! Time keeps on flying by, doesn’t it? While some of us may have a healthy relationship with aging, it’s also natural to fear growing older and to want to slow the ticking clock. Keep scrolling to read perception analyst and writer Dian Griesel's beautiful insights on aging in our Q&A below.
After that, you can expect to learn about:
A retinoid treatment for healthier skin
How to live your best life as you age
Healthline’s Healthy Aging hub
8 easy shower habits to show your body love
Be well,
Morgan Mandriota
Newsletter Editor, Healthline
  Written by Morgan Mandriota
September 26, 2023 • 7 min read
Dian Griesel, PhD, aka Silver Disobedience on Instagram, is a perception analyst whose work is dedicated to empowering people as they grow older. Below, she shares what she has learned about how to age gracefully.
*This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Q: As a perception buster, what have you observed about how people, especially women, typically perceive aging?
A: Here are some general observations:
  • There’s the large majority that firmly declares (even with all their wrinkles and scars from living) they’re very glad to still be alive and a long life is a privilege denied to many.
  • Those who have stayed fit or had the good fortune of health tend to be more OK with aging, as they’re physically capable of getting through the day with greater ease.
  • Some are worried about their financial situation and work is a necessity, while others are facing comfortable retirements that are more hobby- and maybe travel-focused.
  • Then, there are those who are convinced that they’ll beat the inevitable: death. They’re determined to try whatever is within the power of modern-day science, medicine, and technology to retain their vision of youth.
Women tend to be more focused on what they look like and may hold visions of arbitrary beauty standards. Yet, women might be quite surprised to learn that men love them and are less judgmental of women (yes, at every age!) than many might believe.
Q: Do you believe it’s possible to shift long-held perceptions? If so, what does it take to do so?
A: You bet I do –– IF we want to. The mind is an incredibly powerful asset. We can use it to our benefit or detriment.
Historically and societally, perceptions about everything are always challenged and changing. This is no different with age. The fact is sexiness, worth, or lovability are perceptions, attitudes, and mindsets. As people own their unique, one-of-a-kind, never-to-be-replicated assets, perception shifts abound. Suddenly possibilities start to appear often and in unexpected ways and places.
Dian Griesel
Q: What has empowered you as you age?
A: Work has always been an empowering force for me. I’ve been self-employed my whole life, and while I certainly get up and go to work every day, I’ve always felt more like I was playing some kind of Game of Life. Don’t ask me what the rules are, but I’d say that winning “the game” is largely based on how enthusiastic I feel about awakening each morning to face the inevitable challenges of the day.
Writing my daily blog has certainly kept me feeling grateful and connected, too. The commitment I made to write daily, coupled with the fact that so many people tell me my essays have helped them in so many ways, has given me a deep sense of responsibility to continue what I started.
So, I have a mission, and I think having a mission or personal goals is very important. As I tell people, keep a to-do list, and add to it daily!
Q: Can you offer any words of support or encouragement for our readers who may be having a hard time with the thought or act of aging?
A: Getting older is better than never having had the opportunity to get older. A bit of humbleness and appreciation for our good fortune is a good start.
If we wake up, we have the opportunity to try whatever it is that we want. People of every age are still starting yoga, becoming influencers, starting new businesses birthed from lifelong hobbies, celebrating their extended families, traveling, and more. We have rock stars in [their] 70s selling out stadiums! It’s not over until it’s over.
Don’t quit. Do the best you can to take care of your health. Every little incremental step toward healthier living will make you feel better. When we feel better, we look better and are far more energized to live our best life.
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great finds
Editor faves with health perks
Peter Thomas Roth PRO Strength Vitamin A/C/E Retinoid Treatment
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Your skin naturally changes as you age, and its appearance doesn’t define you or how beautiful you are. Whether you embrace the skin you’re in or use products to reverse signs of aging, that’s OK!
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Tips for aging gracefully and living your best life
Weird Science
Tips for aging gracefully and living your best life
What does graceful aging even mean? According to Griesel, it doesn’t matter whether you color your hair, let it go natural, or lose it altogether, so push those arbitrary beauty standards aside. It’s more about your attitude. It’s about accepting the aging process and living your best life through it

Aging gracefully starts with accepting that we do age –– if we’re lucky,” she explains. “It’s how we carry ourselves, respect our knowledge, honor our experience, own what we’ve learned, proudly carry our scars, and respect those that are younger than us as well.”

How to age gracefully. Here are some tips from Griesel and other experts:
  • Be kind to your skin. Wear sunscreen, stay hydrated, and stick to gentle skin care products. (Check out this list of beauty tips from older women to their younger selves!)
  • Stay physically active: This can help lower your risk of disease and improve your mood, sleep, and overall health.
  • See a doctor regularly: Go in for checkups and cancer screenings, manage your mental health with the help of a therapist, and stay on top of any health concerns.
  • Prioritize fun: Reduce your stress levels, find new hobbies, and do whatever else you might enjoy.
  • Seek connection and stay connected: Research shows that older adults who experience social isolation or loneliness are at higher risk of disease or death.
  • Maintain a positive attitude around aging: Evidence suggests that people who do this live longer and can better recover from an injury.
Ultimately, “a life well-lived is defined by owning the fact that every year of life is important, and they all accumulate to help us become who we are,” says Griesel. “Aging gracefully –– being graceful in any aspect –– is not about demanding it from others. It starts with owning it ourselves and believing our worth in our hearts.”

Tell us: How do you feel about aging? Let us know at (Please note that we may share your name and response in an upcoming newsletter!)

More on aging:
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What we’re reading next
Healthline’s Healthy Aging hub. This resource center is for anyone who wants help managing their physical, emotional, and mental health during their aging journey.
🚿 8 easy shower habits to show your body love. Make the most of your shower routine and give your skin the care it deserves with these tips.
🥩 Is a moderate protein diet the key to youth? A new study in mice suggests that it might be. Read the study findings on the importance of eating protein, especially as we age.
👀 Active surveillance for prostate cancer. Learn what it is, why it’s important, how it works, and other information about prostate cancer management.
Thanks for reading! We’ll be back in your inbox on Monday. Enjoy your weekend, and we’ll see you then.
Did you enjoy this interview?
Until next time,
Take care of yourself, and we’ll see
you again soon!
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