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I Am Not My Age ~ #DisruptAging


I used to dread getting older, and for many years I would "fake my age". I had just turned 30 and I would say that I was in my 20's, after all I could then pass for a 25 year old. As I got older, I began to realize that age was/is nothing but a number, and there was absolutely no reason for me to hide behind that number anymore. I embraced turning 40 and I shouted it to the entire world, because 40 was now the new 20. It was a time of learning to love myself all over again, because after all, there was still a lot of life left in me and I was going to live it!

This post is made possible with support from AARP’s Disrupt Aging. All opinions are my own.


As a mother of daughters, it's my responsibility to them to let them know that being a woman and their age has nothing to do with the achievements they can accomplish. It is my job to instill in them the confidence that they need by setting an example. If I obsess about my age, or hide my age, what does that tell them? I need them to know that they can do whatever they set their mind to, and it's my job to disrupt aging and remind them that age does not define them. They can become whoever they want to become, and do whatever they want to do. Their age is nothing but a number and they can be awesome at any age because, they are NOT their age! You are as young or as old as you think you are.


I have learned to dance to the beat of my own drum, to make a path for myself and have refocused my way of thinking. I used to be afraid of getting older because I thought that was the end. However, getting older is not the end, but the beginning for me. I have redefined my life and can now say that I am living my best life. If you haven't noticed, I have changed my hair color more times now than when I was younger. I have taken more risks and learned through all my experiences. There is a lot that can be shared through my journeys and all because I accepted and owned my age!

Recently I sat in on a phone call with legendary executive, digital entrepreneur and the founder of MakeLoveNotPorn Cindy Gallop and garnered some valuable insight that I want to share with you. According to Cindy, Disrupt Aging means "to live your own life in a way that challenges preconceived notions and stereotypes of age and aging, and what it means to grow older".


Cindy talked about her own experiences as an older woman, and why the Disrupt Aging initiative meant so much to her. Cindy encourages women, especially older women in the workplace to actively promote their own value. And I just love Cindy's words in her interview "Own your age!".

We live in a digital age where the young is celebrated and it seems as though only the young are valued. How many models are there that are in their teens or early twenties? You see the beauty commercials on TV and they are geared towards teens or young adults, while incontinence ads are dedicated to those much older as though once you're past 30 you should be looking forward to being in a nursing home.


So, how can you disrupt aging?

1. Stop hiding your age! 
Why are we as women so afraid to tell our age? We should be shouting it from the rooftops, because with age comes great wisdom. (Did you think I was going to say "great responsibility"?) Your age is nothing to be ashamed of, and instead should be celebrated!

2. Promote your value and assert yourself
You have a story to tell. You have skills and life experience that you can share with others, not just in life, but also on the job. As Cindy mentioned: "I encourage older women, especially in the work place, to actively promote their own value, because we have tremendous value." Don't think that your job as a parent isn't valuable in the workplace. You are known as a great multitasker, you solve problems in the home, negotiate tasks in the household, and do it all mostly under pressure, which can be valuable to any employer. So promote your value and don't be afraid to assert, or stand up for yourself!

3. You're never too old!
Don't ever let anyone tell you that you're too old to do anything, because YOU ARE NOT! There is still a lot that you can do, no matter your age. Follow your heart and your dreams and never give up. Don't let fear of aging take hold of you. Remember, this is your life and it is only limited by you.


Let's all be a bit like Cindy and not just own our age, but Disrupt Aging as well!

How do you plan to Disrupt Aging?

Annmarie John
74 Comments
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74 comments:

  1. I love it! Age really IS just a number. No matter how old our bodies' get, our minds stay the same. I still feel like a teenager.

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    1. Thats so good to hear. I'm always hearing "act your age", but what exactly is acting my age. I'm as young as I think I am.

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  2. What a great message to all women. I personally know that when I turned 40 last year that got me a bit. But I am trying and now more so to remember that age is just a number. Plus, I agree that you are only as old as you feel. So appreciate the advice and the reminder here to not let that number become more than it is to yourself.

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    1. Oh I embraced turning 40, it was one of those numbers that I looked forward to. I couldn't wait to be 20 and I also couldn't wait to be 40. My 30's weren't that impressive. Now that I'm older, there is so much I can share because I have the experience, but I'm now looking forward to 50.

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  3. I love this! This advice is so important for us women. Society sends the message that once you get older you loss value. But that isn't true. Age brings wisdom and confidence. I just had another bday and for the first time, I didn't think about my age! I'm embracing getting older. BTWI love your red dress too!

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    1. I've stopped thinking about my age. I'll be 42 in a few months and I'm loving it. We don't loss value, instead we gain experience and that wisdom and confidence we wished we had as teenagers. Embrace your age!

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  4. Omg, your hair is amazing. Do you dye it at a salon or at home? I have dark hair as well, and I could not yet find a color to work for my hair. I love purple and blue. The hair salon are a bit too expensive for my taste, but I think that will have to be my choice. I'm glad you are no more longer hiding your age. I don't mind my actual age, I'm afraid of turning 30, though....

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    1. Hi Criss, I generally tend to wear extensions in my hair to protect it from the elements, but I do have my hair professional colored purple that was done at the salon. I've also never hidden my age. When I turned 40 I shouted it to the entire world right here on my blog. I've always been proud of who I am.

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  5. I have to say, I just LOVE your different hair colors! And yes, I do need to own my age. I admit, I don't always do this.

    I do agree that you are NEVER too old to do what you want to do!

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    1. Why do you hide your age? Are you afraid or ashamed of getting older? There is nothing to be ashamed or afraid of, and yes, you're never too old to do what you want to do. As a matter of fact, when you're older you look forward to doing so. After all, whose permission do you really need?

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  6. This is a powerful message to not only women, but men as well. We don't realize that men can also feel like they're "too old".

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    1. That is very true. I was recently talking to my husband and I told him he was getting old, and his response was "I'm not old". Seems like they are also touch about their age as well.

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  7. I used to lie about my age until I realized I looked younger than my age. People didn't believe me. Then I realized that these people also had "old attitudes" as well.

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    1. When I was younger I couldn't wait to get older, then when I got older I wanted to be younger. Now that I'm 40, I actually embraced turning 40 and love it!

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  8. This is a great post! I am about to turn 25 and I was getting a bit nervous that I wasn't as young as I used to be. Women should be proud of their age!

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    1. We'll never be as young as we used to be. Every year we get older and wiser, and we should feel always feel confident about growing older.

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  9. I love this post! I think we tend to get too involved in what our age actually is! Men have that "rule", never ask a woman her age. Why?

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    1. I don't know why men say that, but it's not just men, even women say it as well. We get caught up in the number and that's really all it is, a number.

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  10. I like it! I plan to never hide my age. I don't think I can anyway because I'm so open about things and being born in 1980! I will color my hair, but only because it rocks, like yours does!
    This is a great message, though. I've never done anything to my face to hide anything there - lines or scars. I want to keep it that way.

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    1. That's amazing! I don't think that anyone should ever have to hide their age. I can totally see you with wild colors, you will totally rock it!

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  11. I always say that age is just a number. As someone who had her daughter in midlife and married later, too I personify that comment. Thanks for this, and so glad that AARP is doing this program to educate people and make them less fearful of aging.
    Estelle

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    1. It really is, but so much people get caught up in the number and stop focusing on living. There really is nothing to be fearful about. Just keep living!

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  12. I definitley feel younger than I am, so I think that helps keep me in the mindset of being younger. Like you said, age is just a number.

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    1. When you feel young, and act young, I think you'll forever stay young, and yes it really is nothing but a number.

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  13. This post is outstanding! I feel every life stage offers a different type of positive experience. I just turned 35 last weekend and am all about embracing this unique time.

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    1. That is good to hear. Yes I believe that too. Once I turned 30, I felt that I knew everything there was to know, but then I turned 40 and realized there was still a lot for me to learn.

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  14. I don't dread getting older. I was once like you! The thing I dread is people guessing my age, and adding more than 5 years to my age!

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    1. Oh I don't mind that at all. I was recently telling my husband that I can't wait for the day when I have salt and pepper hair. I'm actually embracing it.

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  15. I am not sure how I will disrupt aging but I know I am forever forgetting how old I am. I still think I am in my 20's, but I am not. I think I've been doing well just being fun, energetic and happy which helps me appear younger. Even my kids have told me that I am 20 in my head and sometimes much older when it comes to my body aches. I just don't let those body aches get me down, age is just a number. I vow to continue on thinking that I am still just as young as I've always been in my mind :)

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    1. Well that's a good thing isn't it? I don't forget how old I am, but at this point I feel like I can't get any older. I am actually embracing and loving the 40's.

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  16. I totally agree that with age comes great wisdom. We should not be ashamed of our age. Such an awesome and inspiring post.

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    1. Thank you. You really do become wiser as you get older. All the experiences that you've garnered throughout the years is something that you can impart on the younger ones.

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  17. I know it's cliche but it's how they say: age is just a number. Achievements and goals should not be based on how old you are but more on how passionate you are... initiative is not measurable with our age!

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    1. And I have to agree completely with you. Nothing should be based on age, I know older folks who have and are still doing amazing things.

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  18. You look so fabulous! I am learning to embrace my age as well. I love this post so much!

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    1. Thank you for saying so. You do have to learn to accept and embrace your age and live it gracefully. You'll be ok.

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  19. So many great points. As a mom of two teens I deal with this and they deal with this. All of us are short so it's tough to prove our age. I agree age doesn't matter but sometimes if you look young it's hard to gain respect of those older.

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    1. I've never really had to "prove" my age, but I do agree that sometimes if you look young that it's hard to gain respect from those who may be older, but don't let that discourage you. Keep on being you!

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  20. I really enjoyed reading this post. If it would not only cause my husband to have palpitations, I would hop on a skateboard and do stunts again. I hate it when people say, "you're old." No I am not. I am not old. I am experienced. So there. :)

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    1. And why shouldn't you enjoy your skateboard and your stunts? And you're right, you're not old, you're experienced!

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  21. I love your post! I truly believe age is just a number! I always tell my mom, I will be 50 wearing a mini skirt! :)

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    1. And that's exactly how you should be thinking. Nothing should stop you, not even age. You're uniquely you and age has no say in how you live your life.

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  22. I agree with everything! You can do whatever you want to do at whatever age you are! You are beautiful woman, and always be that way!

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    1. Age and sex has quite a lot to do in this world. If you're old then it seems like the world thinks that you're one foot in the grave, if you're a woman, they think that you can't do anything. Let the world know that being older and a woman has nothing to do with what you can achieve.

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  23. This is such an important post. Age is just a number and should not hold you back. By the way, I love your hair! You look fabulous!

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    1. Nothing should hold you back. Not your age and your gender. You can do anything! And thank you for the compliment.

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  24. I love this post! I agree with all these! Loving yourself is the key!

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    1. It's not only about loving yourself, but loving the life that you live and not worrying about your age and what society tends to think about those who are older.

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  25. I love your fun and youthful vibe! Sometimes age is just a number. It's always the mindset that counts.

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    1. It's not just sometimes, but all the time. Stop focusing on your what society tells us that our age means that we can't do what we want. Instead think of it as a challenge and DO what you want.

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  26. My mom is always lightly saying that she is getting old (she's in her early 50s) but I always tell her that she still looks younger than she is. I also mention that it is a privilege to get older as many people don't have that opportunity.

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    1. That is true. It is a privilege, but what's more is that she shouldn't be worrying about how old she is getting, instead focus on how much more life she has to live and live it vicariously.

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  27. Truly enjoyed this post. I just turned 30 plus two so yeah I still feel just as great as I did when I was 22 (and I still look it). I think society does pressure women with their age and make it seem like as soon as you turn 30 life is going downhill. Nope! Yes own you 40, I love how you keep yourself youthful with your fun hair colors.

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    1. Yes, society does make you feel that way constantly. However, sometimes you just have to set your own rules and live by them.

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  28. Thank you for this. It is a great reminder to all of us not to be obsessed with aging. I am on my late 20's and just when I think of reaching 30, I ponder on what achievements I had. But I'd rather focus on my future with my family than burden myself with regrets. I think it's also important that we look good to feel good. Still, confidence is what brings about contentment.

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    1. You nailed it! Instead of focusing and obsessing about our age, how about focusing on our achievements. And I so agree, confidence does bring about contentment.

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  29. I love it! This is a great post....and I adore the AARP campaigns.

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    1. I'm so happy to hear that you love the campaign. What are you doing as a woman to disrupt aging? Are you obsessing about your own age, or making a difference?

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  30. I think age is all in the mind anyways. I know some immature 40 year old's and some very wise 4 year old's! Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I just laughed out loud as this, because I so agree with you. My daughter who just turned 6 is so much more mature than a few older women that I know in real life. I like to call her an old soul.

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  31. I love the point about promoting your value. As women we're taught to be meek whether we're old or young, so there's no time like the present to stand up for ourselves!

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    1. Yes!! Stand up and assert yourself! We as women need to assert ourselves, let others know that we have value.

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  32. I love this. I think I was worry about my age for too long. Now that I have reached more than 40 decades I see age as nothing, is not a reflection of me or how I feel. I plan to live my life to the fullest and wear the shoes and clothes I want at any age.

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    1. You go girl!! I am so with you on that. I dreaded getting older, but now that I'm 40, I truly embrace it. I actually love it!

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  33. Yes I do agree that age is just a number. What matters most is how we mature and learn the lessons of life as we age gracefully

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    1. That is very true. Age is nothing but a number is something I didn't focus on until I got older myself Now it's really about how we do mature as we get older, and also the lessons we learn along the way.

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  34. I have always felt that age is a number. I have many friends who have been dreading turning 40 and I totally embraced it as I’m much better now than I ever was in my 20’s.

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    1. That's really how I was at first. I dreaded getting older when I was in my 20's. I now embrace it and couldn't be happier. I have to say that I am happier now than when I was younger anyway.

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  35. Isn't it crazy how we wait until we are OLDER to realize how little our age really matters? I love seeing you LIVE your best life. It seems to get better the older we get. You look fabulous, my friend! xoxo

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    1. That is so very true Shelly. When I was younger, I was so worried about getting older, now that I am "older", age is the last thing on my mind. Thank you for the kind words. I like to think that I'm aging gracefully.

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  36. Is there a hair colour you CAN'T pull off? They all look incredible! Sometimes thinking about my age makes me frantic, mainly because I haven't achieved anything that I had expected to by this age, which makes me kind of sad! I need to get over it though & just keep trying.

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    1. I'm pretty sure there might be, I have yet to try green and I'm very tempted to, I'm just afraid it might make me look sick. 😂 You can never give up. It doesn't matter if you 70 years old, you can achieve whatever you want at any age with hard work and determination. I'm rooting for you!

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  37. This post is really inspiring.Yes,the age is just a number.There is nothing to hide the age from others.

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    1. Thank you. While we know and most of us accept that age is just a number, why do we try and hide our age? Age with grace.

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