The Lighter Side of Lessons

Are you looking for answers to life’s big questions? How about advice on happiness, finding fulfilling work , love and marriage, or living a life without regrets? You’ve come to the right place! At the Legacy Project, we’ve asked more than 1200 older Americans to share their advice for younger people about how to live happier lives.

The book on the project was just published, and it will make a perfect graduation gift this spring!

Meet some of the amazing elders in person on our YouTube channel! You can also get more elder wisdom by following us on Facebook .

Many of the elders looked at their long lives with a sense of humor. Here are a few of my favorites from the interviews with people ages 70 to 108:

Save your money, take care of yourself, play golf.

Stay out of trouble – and steer clear of other people’s wives!

Choose to be happy. I even wear my Clinique perfume called “Happy.”

Don’t wear a miniskirt when you’re sixty-eight.

God don’t like people that mess around where they ain’t supposed to be. I know he put it out there for you to do if you want to do it, but he don’t tell you to do it!

Well, I don’t think my life would have worked without God in my life because my husband is Mexican-Italian and I’m English-Irish, along that line, and if we hadn’t had God in our life, we just wouldn’t have made it.

I think stick with your beliefs but listen to other people’s sides. A couple of times I think I even voted for Democrats.

Learn new things, don’t sit back and stagnate. I’ve got to admit that we just got a new computer and it still terrifies me. I couldn’t even program anything and I’m a damn mechanic! And here comes an eight year old boy who can work it so well!

I’ve learned that it’s much easier to be positive than negative, it’s easier to smile than to frown, and when in doubt, eat chocolate!

Come join the conversation with the wisest Americans!

3 thoughts on “The Lighter Side of Lessons

  1. What an inspiring project. Thank you so much for sharing the wisdom, charm and stories of so many wonderful people. I can’t wait to read the book!

  2. Just to add a couple of observations on life – an older firend once told me he and his wife had been married so long that her nagging was sounding like good advice. I usually remind my wife we haven’t been married that long! Also, I have always considered happiness as a by-product of doing things from which I derive pleasure and guess what, the more of those things I do, the happier I am. Thanks for all the efforts involved in getting the word out that life is a do-it-yourself project.

  3. Choose to be happy. That is truly the way to age happily. I was christened ‘Happy’ and just lived up to my name most of the time. Now that I am touching 64, I have come to realize that one can choose one’s state of mind. Despite numerous problems, I maintain my true nature. Experience has show me that it is better to be positive in thought, word, and deed than to give way to anxiety about the future. Living in the moment is a tremendous tool, too.
    Keeping a smile on ultimately makes one a happy person. One attracts others. Most people are happy to spend time with you. I love children and interact with them, always ready to support them in any way I can. I find that the company of kids is the most terrific way to enjoy old age. Keeping busy is essential. Retirement gives the time to catch up on one’s reading, and to listen to the music of one’s choice through the day. Mozart’s music is known to uplift. So is nature, of course.
    Gosh! This is turning into a thesis. Guess, I am just a happy, old person and want to share with others.

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