We have all heard the saying "60 is the new 40." For us baby boomers, aging is truly a different experience than it was for our parents and grandparents. Gone are the "grandmas" of yesterday in their dusters, always baking and identified for the most part through their husbands. Gone too are the grandpas in their recliners who only get up for the next meal or to go fishing.
We are more fit, more fun and more happening than previous generations. We wear similar clothing, like the same music and enjoy the same movies, books and television shows.
Plastic surgery, Botox, fillers and peels can keep us looking younger (if you go to someone good and in moderation) -- or if taken too far -- like old women, unwrinkled and fish-lipped who can't move their faces.
But the secret to staying young? Keeping up in our technological world. Want to instantly age yourself? Be the person who "doesn't get Twitter," can't figure out Facebook and won't even consider texting or Instagram. Be the one who never uses a computer -- better yet call it a "machine" and "don't do email." Yep. Be that person. And you are old.
Just this week I tweeted my 7,000th tweet. I have almost 2,600 followers and yes, I love Twitter (Full disclosure -- I am a journalist and began my Twitter career in the Blagojevich courtroom live-tweeting both trials.)
Twitter is not frivolous. In fact, it is used by businesses, hospitals, media, universities and government agencies.
I have reconnected with friends and found many sources for my news reporting with Twitter and Facebook.
In the earliest days of Twitter, major stories broke on Twitter, not on CNN. When a Continental Airlines crashed in Denver in 2008, Twitter broke the story. It was first to report the earthquake in China in 2008 and terrorism in Mumbai. The Iranian election in 2009 was a Twitter event with reportedly 2,500 updates per minute. And we learned on Twitter that Bin Laden was dead -- in fact Keith Urbahn, the former chief of staff for Donald Rumsfeld tweeted, "So I'm told by a reputable person they have killed Osama Bin Laden. Hot damn." That was supposedly Twitter's biggest scoop.
And the scoops continue today. You can turn on cable news and watch an endless loop of theories about the Malaysian air crash (or what I sometimes call "beating a dead horse"). Or go to your Twitter feed and a world of information is at your fingertips. Assuming you follow reputable people who are tweeting accurate news, you can learn more in just a few minutes about the stories of the day than from cable news.
This morning's Twitter feed: I learned that the Supreme Court struck down limits on Federal campaign contributions, that hospitals in the UK are on alert for the Ebola virus, that March was the first month without a U.S. combat death in more than a decade, that Brad Pitt's production company lands rights to the Steubenville story and that juicing may not be so good for us.
Twitter can be used to find a job, research an illness, check out a movie review or a hurricane. It will allow you to see what the world is talking about. Skeptical? Turn into Twitter next time there is a big event: A Presidential election, the Academy Awards, Super Bowl or State of the Union. The feed is fast and furious.
So baby boomers. Want to stay young and current? Get yourself a Twitter handle. (Mine is @Msjournalist)
Pick a photo. Write a description -- here's mine:
Freelance journalist- contributor to Chicago Tribune, NY Times, Washington Post, CBC. Breast cancer survivor -author Blagojevich blog http://www.blagojustice.com
Here is Hillary Clinton's ( love her description):
Hillary ClintonVerified account
Wife, mom, lawyer, women & kids advocate, FLOAR, FLOTUS, US Senator, SecState, author, dog owner, hair icon, pantsuit aficionado, glass ceiling cracker, TBD...
New York • clintonfoundation.org
Use a hash tag (# sign) to search for what interests you. Start tweeting. I promise you won't regret it.
Why? The post 50 actress-turned-activist puts some entertaining spins on world events. She retweets interesting material from journalists and fellow activists alike. She also tweets interesting links to articles in The Guardian, particularly those pertaining to injustices against women and children.
Post 50 Arianna Huffington is a great believer in The Third Metric, which redefines success beyond money and power. Arianna often tweets links to articles on stress management and posts photographs of peaceful places. Follow her on Twitter if you want to unwind and also if you want to learn about current events.
Next Avenue features links to amazing articles written to energize and inform Americans over 50. Topics from Next Avenue include welcoming grandchildren, raising adult children and preparing for retirement.
Want to know how to live frugally? Follow Gary Foreman on Twitter. You can learn how to save money on landscaping, snag some luxuries for your home and write a great Craigslist ad. Definitely worth hitting the Follow button.
So much more than a contributing editor at Bankrate.com, Jay MacDonald will show you what you need to know about insurance crime and con artists alike as well as provide interesting insight on ESPN's Mike Greenberg on his new "chick lit" novel. This is a post 50 totally worth following.
The Points Guy shows you how to maximize your travel miles and points. Following The Points Guy on Twitter will help you save big on vacations.
This Twitter feed provides tons of useful information on how to handle old debts on your credit report and what to look for in an emergency credit card among many other super interesting credit-related issues. Definitely one to follow if you want to take charge of your credit.
As the senior writer for Huff/Post 50, Ann Brenoff tweets about topics that are extremely relevant to the lives of post 50s.
Founder of The Feisty Side of Fifty, a website dedicated to helping boomer women find jobs, Mary Eileen Williams provides excellent advice regarding the job hunt through her Twitter account. Her tweets can inspire any post 50 woman to find success.
This magazine targeted at boomer women who want to stay energetic and young will provide you with links to great articles on eating healthy and on other topics compelling to the post 50 woman.
AARP Money/Work isn't just for the long ago retired crowd. Any boomer can learn a lot of useful information from the posts on this Twitter profile. Tweets include links to articles about social security and the job search alike.
This fabulous post 50 news anchor posts about current events, the subjects of her talk show and a host of issues that are pertinent to her fellow boomers like methods for saving time and beating stress as well as articles on female leaders.
Post 50 Dr. Mehmet Oz will show you how to get healthy through his interesting tweets. Click on the #OzTip tweets for a list of all his greatest tips on staying fit and energetic.
This unstoppable post 50 and self-proclaimed "mother, activist and actress" tweets about everything from the perils of fracking to the hilarious new movie, "The Entrepeneur." Follow her for some real entertainment.
...and lastly for a great summary of all things post 50, look no further than the Huff/Post50 Twitter account!
Follow Susan Berger on Twitter: www.twitter.com/MsJournalist