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6 reasons to change your mind about aging

I love aging. I really do. I realize that aging has its challenges, including the biggest challenge of all, the fear of death. But the rewards of aging, to my mind, far outweigh the negatives. Here are 6 reasons you may want to change your mind about aging.

1. Aging is an opportunity to deepen our connection with Nature

It's an opportunity, for example, to take an early morning walk down to the creek, like I did this morning (the summers are so hot here in Colorado that you have to get your walk in early or become toast). And with the gift of time that aging brings – the opportunity to linger if you want to – become more conscious of the beauty and wonder of the natural world that we so often take for granted.

2. Aging is an opportunity to expand our boundaries

I was very uptight when I was young. It was hard for me to connect with other people. My dad, who was a great communicator, must have cringed when he introduced me to one of his reporter friends because I simply didn't know what to say.

I would just stand there. I was present but barely. I was kind of a blob. But now the lid is off. Aging has made it possible for me to extricate myself from the cocoon in which I used to live and emerge, bright eyed and bushy tailed – a new person.

It still amazes me. But I find, as I penetrate deeper into my true nature, that I love talking with people. I love it. I love listening to them. I love hearing their stories. I love being ebullient. I love trying to tell jokes. I love expressing the natural buoyancy and cheerfulness of our God-given spirit.

3. Aging gives more time to remember our true nature

The very fact of being born into this world tends to instill in us a forgetfulness of our true nature. In subtle and not-so subtle ways we may become convinced of an inherent flaw, an inherent unworthiness. I experience that no matter how much we may have achieved or not achieved in our lives heretofore, aging opens a door to a deeper experience of ourselves as we truly are -- the limitless, eternal being which we have always been.

4. Aging gives an opportunity to change our relationship with fear

I'm not finished with fear. As long as we live in a fearful world I'm not sure we will ever be finished with fear. But I would say this. As I learn to trust life more deeply, and as my love for my own unconquerable spirit deepens, my relationship with fear is changing. As I become more conscious of my own presence, always here, always present, never changing, the fear that I have carried with me ever since I was a child seems to me to be diminishing.

5. An opportunity to love myself and my loved ones more deeply

Aging gives us time and opportunity to love ourselves and our loved ones more deeply. To forgive them as we forgive ourself. To see them in new ways. To cherish them exactly as they are. And to see the unique gift each of us has come into the world to give.

6. A chance to do something we really love doing

Last but not least, aging can be a chance to do something we really love doing but perhaps did not have a chance to do before.

Can you help me choose a title for my book?

I'm going to wind this post up now. But I do want to share one more thing with you. As I've mentioned before, I've been working hard on a new book. It has 20 chapters, all quite brief, drawn from earlier posts, with a new introduction and a great foreword by Jungian psychotherapist Carol Leavenworth, of Denver.  I'm happy to say the book is pretty well finished, ready to send to the designer, but I would love your help in choosing a title.

I'll give a free copy of my book to two people who leave the most helpful comments regarding the following possible titles (or have a good idea for a different title).

The Bliss of Aging

The Secret Bliss of Aging

The Sweet Strong Bliss of Aging

The Blissful Senior

Journey into Bliss

Aging into Bliss

As you will see, I like the word ‘bliss’ and would like to have it in the title if possible because I believe bliss is the core of our true nature and the birthright of every one of us. However, I’m open to any suggestions.

My love to you. In these very troubling, difficult times -- times also of great potential -- stay strong.

Picture credit:  seniorconnecting_Com

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{ 72 comments… read them below or add one }

DiscoveredJoys July 24, 2012 at 4:32 pm

I see you have some of the best ideas already…

How about

Return to Bliss
Contented Bliss
Blissful Contentment
The Counsels of Bliss
More Years, Greater Bliss
Time for Bliss

(The last one is my favourite)

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:14 pm

Wow. Thanks so much for your input. You’ve given me some really good notions. I do thank you for taking the time to contribute and wish you the very best of everything.It is a Time for Bliss isn’t it?

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Loma Huh July 24, 2012 at 4:34 pm

Hi Chris,

I especially love reason number 2 and the way you’re embracing and expanding your life. Great example of not being bound by our past (no matter how many years of it there are!).

I’d like to suggest “Blissfully Aging” as a title that includes the word you like so much. It also opens the door for other books to follow that develop related themes, like “Blissfully Connecting” or “Blissfully Creating” or any other topic you choose to explore in greater depth.

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:17 pm

Thank you Loma. Delighted to hear from you. Very nice. Blissfully aging. And I like your vision of possible follow-ups very much. Jeepers. All this input. I’m really going to have to listen to my heart on this one aren’t I? Love to you Loma.

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linda July 24, 2012 at 5:22 pm

I particularly like Journey into Bliss. Partly a process of elimination of the others (too many words, too new-age-y), and partly because I think it really speaks to the fact that it is a journey. Aging is a journey. And as you said – there are so many things to like about aging. I think “journey” speaks to that. It’s a lifelong journey. Is that redundant? 🙂 And of course “bliss” for the very reasons you mentioned.

So Journey into Bliss, Journey of Bliss…

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:27 pm

Terrific input Linda. Many thanks. I do love the image of a journey. I kind of think the idea of a “hero’s journey” is deep in all our consciousnesses. And surely that is what all our lives are, whether we think of it that way or not. Best wishes to you Linda.

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Teri July 24, 2012 at 5:39 pm

I like Journey into Bliss also!

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:30 pm

Thank you so much Teri. Very happy to hear from you.

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Rick July 24, 2012 at 6:15 pm

I like “The Secret Bliss of Aging” because we all know somewhere in us that there is a secret world we have been seeking all our lives, and the very word “secret” intrigues us. Many of us see aging as a terrifying prospect, because our society seems to push the old out, and we may feel isolated and unwanted, less capable of being of value. To see “Secret Bliss of Aging offers hope, an invitation to not just exist, but to find something more than the dismal existence we have been dreading.

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:41 pm

A really insightful comment Rick. Thank you so much for sharing. I was reading a few comments to my wife just now and as she listened to yours, she said “That’s very accurate. It really is what a lot of people think about aging and how important to bring some hope into the picture.”

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Angela Gentile July 24, 2012 at 6:21 pm

I LOVE “Journey Into Bliss” (like the others). I think I like it best because it does not include any reference to the word “aging”. Your subtitle could include the word “aging” with a more specific description of what the book is about and who it would appeal to.

Looking forward to your book!
Angela

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:51 pm

Thank you and bless you Angela. I am very touched by your comment and all the other very fine and helpful comments. Love and blessings to you and thank you for saying you look forward to my book. I’m never going to be a Mom fortunately but doing a book sure does feel like giving birth at times…a little voice cries out “Aren’t we finished yet?” or something like that…

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Lin Neufeld July 24, 2012 at 6:28 pm

I would vote for Aging into Bliss as the title for your book. It’s succinct and encompasses the subject. On a practical level the title starts with ‘A’ and if listed on the net or for any other search purposes the title should be listed quickly. I enjoy your posts so thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge and experience….Namasté

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:57 pm

Valuable input Lin. Thanks for your most helpful comment. What you say about having a title start with ‘A’ is fascinating, I must say, I didn’t realize this. I used to think I knew a bit about publishing but that was quite a few years ago — holy smokes, we’re in a new age aren’t we?

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Jennifer July 24, 2012 at 6:45 pm

How to Age Blissfully
Aging with Bliss
Aging should be Blissful

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Christopher Foster July 24, 2012 at 6:59 pm

Thanks a million Jennifer. Wonderful input. God bless.

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jane July 24, 2012 at 7:06 pm

Journey into Bliss is a beautiful title. I am on my own journey myself. And I love every moment of it. Good luck.

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 9:51 am

Thank you Jane. It is a good title isn’t it. It certainly is a journey no question about that. I’m so thankful for all the feedback I’m getting including yours. I love that you are loving your own journey and send you a ton of good wishes.

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Evan Griffith July 24, 2012 at 7:22 pm

Chris —

You already have the best title: Aging into Bliss — or — Journey into Bliss.

To me it conveys YOU — and everything you are about. It also sets the tone. It’s not going to be any of that ‘getting old isn’t for sissies’ sentiment — it’s going to be a book of uplift. And mystical connection.

Now you just need to get the subtitle!

Could be something like this . . .

Journey into Bliss: An adventure in aging

Here’s to a strong finish to the project. I can’t wait to buy it! (No more of this free stuff , OK?)

Evan
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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 9:57 am

Evan, bless you and thank you for your comment and your input re the subtitle. As always your support and inspiration means so much. I hear what you say and I thank you for it. PS Okay, I’ll be prudent about the free stuff. I think I overdid it with my raven book on Kindle and it kind of backfired on me. Always comes back to balance doesn’t it. Blessings to you Evan and stay strong

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Valerie Baker July 24, 2012 at 7:41 pm

Chris,
“Aging into Bliss” has strength and spark together – I vote for this one. It rolls through the mind as a single energetic charge.

I find the best writing carries a quality as smooth as velvet, and this title has that velvet feel.

I enjoy your posts and look forward to each one. I’ve recently begun a blog of my own and once I figure out how to link to other blogs, I’d like to include yours. We both offer an invitation to spirituality through the simple joy of being oneself.

I’m glad you’re publishing another book. I loved The Wisdom of Serenity and The Raven Who Spoke With God. There is such fulfillment in offering our gifts, and yours have blessed many.

Kind regards,
Valerie Baker

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:05 am

Thank you for your very special thoughts Valerie. I love, really love your comment re strength and spark working together, and how the best writing is “smooth as velvet.” Congratulations on starting your own blog and it would be a pleasure to link with you.

Thank you for your kind words re my other books but most of all thank you for your substantial input here. Oh dear. I’m going to have my work cut out for me aren’t I getting a handle on all these wonderful contributions:-). Love to you Valerie.

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nel July 24, 2012 at 8:21 pm

Hi Christopher,
May I suggest?
Bliss – finding your way there
Best wishes,
Nel

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:11 am

Nel, I’m happy to hear from you. Thank you for your very fine suggestion. Am I right in thinking you live in Australia? Wonderful country, it seems like yesterday I sailed up the Yarra river to Melbourne on a freighter from Durban. A young man heeding a call to adventure that said, “Spend some time in Australia.” Best wishes from Colorado.

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kathy867 July 24, 2012 at 9:34 pm

Attitudes can be positive, negative, or neutral regarding people, places and things. Behavior is the physical manifestation of your attitudes. Your behaviors are one way of letting people know your attitudes. Changing your behavior and attitude must be done at the same time, since one influences the other significantly.
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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:14 am

Thanks for sharing these very interesting thoughts about change Kathy. I appreciate your input.

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Loma Huh July 24, 2012 at 9:50 pm

After reading all the comments, I had one more idea that I don’t think has been mentioned:

The Age of Bliss

or, to be sure it lands among the A’s in any list:

Age of Bliss

It’s kind of a play on words, where “age” refers both to one’s physical age and to the sense of a new era.

Just a thought! Blessings on your project!

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:21 am

Loma, thank you again, what an interesting idea and suggestion. Words are magical, aren’t they, in what they can do. Reminds me of a Bible quote I’ve always loved, goes something like this, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold set in pictures of silver.” Thank you for your blessings on the book. Much appreciated.

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johanna July 24, 2012 at 11:22 pm

Title of your new book: I’ll definitely choose “The Blissful Senior”. Because it shows me a picture of someone admirable – someone who walked the road and found the answer. A real person in real life.

Here’s my reasons why I don’t recommend one of the others:
The Bliss of Aging = As if there’s only bliss in aging, none of the other trials. A picture of concepts.
The Secret Bliss of Aging = Too many books trying to ‘reveal’ one or other secret.
The Sweet Strong Bliss of Aging = Too sentimental
Journey into Bliss = Can be any age
Aging into Bliss = As if Aging is a stepping stone to bliss, the main goal. No picture of a real person. Concepts, as the first one.

I admire you on trying your hand on such a heavy thing as producing a book at the age of 80 – I wish you an overwhelming cloud of blessings and success,

Johanna from China.

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:32 am

Hi Johanna from China,

Thank you for your strong and very helpful words. And thank you for your blessings. You’ve given me a lot to think about. Could I ask whereabouts in China you live and what you do there? Am I right in thinking that China’s attitude to older people is a little different than some other cultures? Blessings to you too Johanna.

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Lucy Raja July 24, 2012 at 11:31 pm

I read your blog on aging. It is very helpful and insightful. The Bliss of Aging is the apt title for your book. Wish you all the best.

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:33 am

Hi Lucy, happy to connect with you. Many thanks for your input and I wish you all the best too.

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Albert Liew July 25, 2012 at 2:41 am

Hi Chris,
I prefer ‘Journey into Bliss’ as ‘Aging’ sounded coming to an end. What’s so blissful about coming to an end? Whereas ‘Journey’ evokes something exciting and of mystery; of exploration and adventure. Especially with ‘young seniors’ like me (only 50+), it will be a journey into aging and it could be a blissful journey. Hope my explanation helps.

Cheers,

Albert

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:47 am

Albert, thank you so much for taking the time to contribute. You make a very interesting distinction between the idea of ‘aging’ and the idea of a ‘journey.’ I agree. One does conjure the idea of ‘an end’ — whereas ‘Journey’ evokes something interesting and exciting…heck, most of us do love travel, don’t we?

You’ve really given me something to think about (and others too I’m sure). Thanks Albert. All the very best.

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Tom July 25, 2012 at 3:30 am

Hi Christopher,

How about Aging – A Blissful adventure

or Aging – A Blessed Adventure.

Best wishes,

Tom
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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:48 am

Thank you Tom. Very good notions. Best wishes to you too and have a wonderful day.

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Surendra sahu July 25, 2012 at 4:11 am

The Blissful Senior will be the most appropriate title of your book.

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 10:52 am

Thanks Surendra. Lovely to hear from you and give my love to India. (I hope I’m right on that and forgive me if I’m wrong). I had the good fortune to make a number of visits to India back along the way.

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Shirls July 25, 2012 at 4:17 am

I really like AGING INTO BLISS. It encompasses the journey, the process and the goal. As someone has suggested above it begins with “A”, but also with a verb which makes it strong. I look forward to reading it.

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 1:13 pm

Thank you Shirls. Very, very, very helpful. Most grateful to share this journey with you. Be well.

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Maureen Moeller July 25, 2012 at 8:21 am

I LOVE your blog! I often forward it to my 80+ vibrant parents (my dad golfs his age!!). I think The Secret Bliss of Aging is the best choice for the title of your new book. I believe the word “secret” will draw in the curiosity of those of us who are just beginning to deal with the aging process and have not yet come to terms with it.

The word “secret” holds within it the hope that there is a soothing answer to our angst toward lost youth and entrance into the fall of our lives. I am looking forward to more upbeat and insightful musings into the aging process, especially your take on fear. Fear can paralyze and stifles our expression of the gifts we have to offer the world. Bless you and your lovely wife.

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 1:27 pm

Maureen, thank you for sharing about your parents and also for your kind words re the blog. You paint a very vivid picture. What a sad situation where on the one hand a person realizes their youth has gone, and yet the way forward looks a bit bleak or FEELS a bit bleak perhaps regardless of their best efforts to ensure the best possible retirement.

Your words and suggestion re title are eloquent and most helpful. They are going deep into my consciousness. Delighted to be on this road of life with you (and with your feisty parents.) Blessings to you Maureen.

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kim July 25, 2012 at 8:59 am

Christopher,

Thank you for this post. I love the way you write and how you share your truths and your emotions, it is very touching.

I’m sure you’ve thought about this already, but what about, ‘A blissful age’ or ‘The blissful age’.

I’m going to forward this to my dad who is 70 now and needs a bit of inspiration.
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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Thank you for your suggestions Kim, much appreciated, and thank you for your kind words re my writing. It’s a strange thing creating as I’m sure you know. We have to do our best regardless of whether someone else likes what we do or hates it — and yet if and when appreciation does come it makes the sun comes out. Somehow it confirms that what wew are doing is worthwhile. Kind of a paradox.

So thanks and can I say Hi to your Dad? I’d love to hear from him anytime if he is ever so inclined. Blessings to you Kim.

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Linda Hewett July 25, 2012 at 11:04 am

Hello Chris,
You have inspired me to get on with my long term book writing project, no more procrastinating for me! (yes, I mean it!)
How about these titles…
The Surprising Bliss of Aging
Or
Aging – A Blissful Surprise
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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 1:41 pm

Hi Linda, how are you? I hope your Confidence Forum is doing well, it’s a great idea. Your title ideas are very nice, thank you so much. And hey, I wish you a ton of success with your book. Didn’t someone once say, “Now is always the accepted time,” or something like that?

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Ellie July 25, 2012 at 11:38 am

Love this concept! I see lots of great things about each of the titles, but I hope the one you choose will include “Aging.” I do like “Journey into Bliss” a lot, but it sounds like seniors are really your audience so make sure they know it’s for them. How about including a sub to pair with Maureen’s idea, for example:
“The Secret Bliss of Aging: Discovering lessons throughout life’s journey” or something like that.
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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 1:46 pm

Every commenter has something so helpful and valuable to say and you are no exception Ellie. Your comment is MOST helpful. Thank you so much. I wish you much success with your endeavors. Take care now.

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Lisa July 25, 2012 at 12:11 pm

Seasoned Bliss

🙂 Good luck!

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Christopher Foster July 25, 2012 at 1:47 pm

Thank you Lisa. Good luck to you too. We’re in this together, right?

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dilip July 25, 2012 at 5:41 pm

how about this title-

“AGING?WHO SAYS THAT I AM OLD?”
OR
‘BLISS OF REMAINING YOUNG FOREVER’

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Christopher Foster July 26, 2012 at 6:11 pm

Hi Dilip, many thanks for your input. Best wishes and be well.

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Bobbi Emel July 25, 2012 at 10:14 pm

Christopher, you’re my hero!

For the book, I like “The Bliss of Aging.”
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Christopher Foster July 26, 2012 at 6:13 pm

Thank you Bobbi, much appreciate your support and your input re title. Goodness. I’m going to need the wisdom of Solomon to decide:-)

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Peter Wilkes July 26, 2012 at 12:47 am

All the best with your book. I think a few people freak out about aging.

Here’s a thought for a title:

‘Hello Bliss’
– finding joy in aging –

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Christopher Foster July 26, 2012 at 6:14 pm

It’s a very cool title Peter. Very catchy. Thanks a lot for joining in here.

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Elle July 26, 2012 at 7:40 am

I like Journey into Bliss. It pulls the reader in, making him / her want to find out more. If you use it, I think you would also need a subtitle such as, Reasons to Change Your Mind About Aging.

Congrats on your book!

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Christopher Foster July 26, 2012 at 6:18 pm

Thank you and bless you Elle. Much appreciate your support and kind suggestion. Journey into Bliss is a good one all right. Best wishes.

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Kaylee July 26, 2012 at 5:06 pm

Hi Christopher =)

Having just found my first gray hair the other day, this post is very welcome. (And wouldn’t you know, 2 days after that I found another!) Aging isn’t something to be afraid of – you’ve given us so many reasons to embrace it.

I really like “The Bliss of Aging” or “Aging Into Bliss” because they give us a sense of what the book will be about. I like “Journey Into Bliss” also, but that could be about anything. Incorporating age into the title helps us know exactly what we’ll be reading.

Congrats on the book! That’s so exciting. =)
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Christopher Foster July 26, 2012 at 6:24 pm

I’m so happy to hear from you Kaylee. Sorry about the gray hair(s). I’m just happy for the gray hairs I do have:-). Thank you for your comment, it’s very helpful. I think you’re probably right that it would be useful to have the idea of aging in the title. Best wishes to you Kaylee and stay strong as the adventure continues.

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Nadeja July 29, 2012 at 10:33 am

Thank you Chris.
I can so relate to these inspiring thoughts! I am loving the process and I just love old folks of all ages. Just watched a clip of a 100 year old lady being interviewed by Jay Leno in 2011! She still plays a mean harmonica! Thank you for your precious insights.
Love,
Nadeja

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Christopher Foster July 30, 2012 at 9:44 am

Thank you so much Nadeja. Isn’t it interesting how many inspiring examples are emerging these days of “old” people showing true youthfulness and vigor in their lives? Love to you too.

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Joshua Tilghman July 31, 2012 at 8:09 am

Christopher,

I just found your blog and I must say there is wisdom here indeed! What a lovely post. Thank you. As far as your title goes, I would say the title “Aging into Youth” would reflect your post (even though it doesn’t say bliss) because it truly seems that you have found, metaphorically, the fountain of youth in your thoughts, actions, and deeds.

Take care.
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Christopher Foster August 1, 2012 at 5:19 pm

Thank you for this suggestion Joshua, it’s interesting and evocative. And thanks for your kind words. Very happy to connect with you. Be well.

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Daniel Hill@The Fireplace Company September 17, 2012 at 4:17 am

Journey into Bliss is a beautiful title. I am on my own journey myself. And I love every moment of it. Good luck.

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Christopher Foster September 18, 2012 at 6:37 pm

Thanks for your input Daniel, best of luck with your journey.

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Sonali Chauhan September 17, 2012 at 5:02 am

Great summary about mind aging. I’m totally in favor of “Aging gives more time to remember our true nature” it is the fact of life ! As long you give time to life ! Life will give back your time.

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Christopher Foster September 18, 2012 at 6:39 pm

You’re absolutely right Sonali. Many thanks for your input here. Love and blessings to you.

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Santosh November 7, 2012 at 5:49 am

Hi Christopher
Thanks for sharing Important Tips. What an amazing list of tips! I love these and the brain facts that accompany each of them.

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Christopher Foster November 13, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Good to hear from you Santosh. Thanks so much for your comment and I wish you all the very best.

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Renee May 1, 2013 at 5:58 am

I really love your blog Christopher! What I love about aging is the wisdom and ability to look at the challenges in my life and be able to determine that I can find a solution. I think when we are younger, we either don’t care or ignore problems simply because we don’t know how to handle them or find a solution for them. As we grow older, we can draw on our experience and make parallels to be able to handle what comes our way. As you said, “love your unconquerable spirit”!

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Diane December 11, 2013 at 9:25 am

The Secret Bliss of Aging is my choice. I like this one because everyone wants to be in on the ‘secret’ or the wisdom of something they don’t know anything about and are seeking to find knowledge. Good luck!

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