We start off excited about growing older. But there comes a point when we start to dread it. You’ll finally feel old when your body starts breaking down and you can’t do what your mind wants you to do.
I finally felt old when I did my year in review for 2017 and realized my mind and my body broke. That was the year I turned 40 years old.
Ever since graduating from college in 1999, I’ve woken up by 5:30 AM to do side hustle work for a couple hours before going to work. Then I’d do some more side hustle work after I got home.
But I finally broke down one evening when I couldn’t put my newborn son to bed at around midnight after three tries. He fought sleep like no other. We should have hired a night doula, but didn’t know any better at the time.
Exhaustion Makes You Feel Old Fast
Instead of using the day to store energy for the night as a work from home dad, I was exhausted and had to wake up my wife to take over. I felt like such a loser to be unable to provide two hours of uninterrupted care.
From then on (4 months old), I no longer helped with the nights, thanks to my dear wife. When we had our second child, we were smart enough to hire a night doula to get us through the newborn stage.
Ever since my wife took over all the nights with our first child, I sleep six hours each evening uninterrupted. I need it to be able to create new posts for the blog and get my online business work done. When I’m exhausted, not only do I feel old, my creative juices don’t flow.
You’re Finally Old When You Keep Getting Injured
In 2017, I sprained my left ankle for maybe the 15th time of my life because I was 2 hours 10 minutes into a tough tennis match and my legs couldn’t hold anymore.
Then, I strained a muscle in each quad playing softball of all things. I was not used to the sudden sprint to first base from a stop position. Then for six weeks I experienced intense lower back pain. I had too much stress running a business and being a full-time dad. And also probably from swinging too hard in softball (played 10 games in 5 consecutive weeks). All of these injuries sure made me feel old.
After laying in bed to rest my back one day, I realized I was pushing myself as if I was still 25 years old. There was a complete disconnect with what I believed I could do for all these years and what I could actually do.
So from 2018 onwards, I finally decided to act my age and take things down a notch! Life speed accelerates because each year left is a greater and greater percentage of the remaining years of your life. Make the most of the time you have on Earth!
Update: It’s 2021 and I’m turning 44 years old. I feel good in terms of endurance. However, my knees are more achy when I play tennis, and my back often gets sore when I play softball. I’m also more susceptible to chest colds because my son is in preschool. Don’t take your health for granted!
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About the Author
Sam began investing his own money ever since he opened an online brokerage account in 1995. Sam loved investing so much that he decided to make a career out of investing by spending the next 13 years after college working at two of the leading financial service firms in the world.
During this time, Sam received his MBA from UC Berkeley with a focus on finance and real estate. He also became Series 7 and Series 63 registered. In 2012, Sam was able to retire at the age of 34 largely due to his investments that now generate roughly $200,000 a year in passive income. He spends time playing tennis, hanging out with family, consulting for leading fintech companies and writing online to help others achieve financial freedom.
FinancialSamurai.com was started in 2009 and is one of the most trusted personal finance sites today with over 1.5 million organic pageviews a month. Financial Samurai has been featured in top publications such as the LA Times, The Chicago Tribune, Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal.