Do it While You’re Young

Do it While You’re Young, Before You get too Old

Do it While You’re Young, Before You get too Old     

Do it While You’re Young. Those words in the title of this post above. What do they mean? How Young is Young? How Old is Old?  How Young is Old?

I’m confused as I hear and read these words as captions on Instagram photos, quite often. In fact, these very words were spoken to me as recently as yesterday after I talked about my travels of the past year to someone.

I was recently interviewed by Richard Collett, better known as Travel Tramp UK, for TravelContinuously.  One of his questions “ Is anyone too old to travel? “ got me thinking, Is anyone ever too old to travel?
My answer is No.

When you are in your twenties, you cannot comprehend what it’s like to be in your sixties. But when you eventually reach your sixties you know exactly what it was like in your twenties.

Let me break down those phrases and try to explain why I always end up standing there in silence, with a distorted attempt of a polite smile on my face, every time I hear ” Do it While You’re Young”

Do it While You’re Young Kovalam Beach, Kerala, India 1977
Do it While You’re Young Travelling with baby in France 1981

You’re Still Young

Young, old, middle-aged…I’m a firm believer that one’s age is a poor indication of one’s abilities, life views and general lifestyle decisions. However, that doesn’t stop us from using these numbers to stereotype and make broad assumptions about other people all the time.

For example, if someone learns that you’re 63 years old, they will often think that you must be retired or near to retirement, long past your adventurous days and just living a well-structured, responsible life as all 63 year-olds are expected to live.

Travelling with Mum in Thailand 2004

silverbackpacker shadow circle

Well, I’m 63 years old and none of the above applies to me.

In addition, every 23 year old out there isn’t automatically lively, youthful and carefree. And likewise, there are plenty of 80 year-olds who put most 20 year-olds to shame in terms of energy and passion for life.

As Henry Ford once said: “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”

So, whether you’re 23, 43, 63 or 103, don’t let anyone (including yourself) convince you that at some point in the future, you will no longer be ‘young’. You have the ability to stay young for as long as you desire. It all comes down to Mindset.

I am still climbing mountains, chasing waterfalls, hiking in unknown territory for 2 or 3 days, and even joining pioneering down a river in the Philippines by Kayak.

Do it while you're Young at Mt Pinatubo, Philippines

I’m Doing ‘IT’

Not only am I still young, (in Mind, if not in Body haha) but I’m told to keep on doing ‘it’ while I can. However, I have a relatively strong hunch that neither I nor anyone telling me about this ‘it’ actually knows what ‘it’ is.

Is ‘it’ travelling around the world, living abroad, not pursuing a traditional retirement, wearing sandals every day, not being married, kipping in hammocks, devouring Indian food three times a week, working on the Internet or just chasing my dreams in general?
Yes, I still have plenty of dreams.

At the end of the day, ‘it’ seems to involve anything associated with living outside the normal boundaries and expectations of life. And this ‘it’ is often implied to be a phase that I’m expected to grow out of, even at 63, just as a child grows out of their fondness for pulling legs off of spiders. The fact that I consider my decisions to be more than a nameless phase often goes completely unnoticed.

So, if your life involves an ‘it’, one that you are truly passionate about, you should always take it seriously, no matter what age you are, regardless of what others may think. Not even for one brief moment, should you believe that time is running out on your ability to live the life you want.

And on that note……………

Do it While You’re Young Climbing the 6th level of Budoy Falls in Cervantes. Ilocos Sur, Philippines 2016

While I Can?

Is there something that occurs at age 63 that nobody has told me about?
Does it become illegal to carry a backpack or to travel by chicken bus around the Philippines?
Do I wake up one day and find that my shorts and t-shirts have been replaced by a wardrobe full of pyjamas and my passport has turned into a Pension Book?

I personally find it difficult to envision an inability to do something tomorrow that I am currently able to do today.

While you can” now for me takes on a completely different meaning. I still have my health, my energy for life, and my enthusiasm for new adventures, (check out and follow my Facebook Page Silverbackpacker to see my latest Adventures) so why should I conform to the norm.

This view of life assumes that everyone aged 60+ is one day required to give up the pursuit of their dreams and goals and then settle down, plod around town, pass time quietly in the public library or tend the Rose garden and stagnate for the rest of their days

I feel that if you want to carry on living your ‘it’ till the end of your days, then go for it…why not? Don’t let the idea of ‘while you can’ deter you.
Next year’s birthday cake is not going to be laced with a ‘settle down’ drug that instantly forces you to replace your current life with a completely different version. It does not matter how old you are or what you’re trying to achieve, you remain in control of your decisions at all times.

Once again, Henry Ford sums it up best: “If you think you can do something or think you can’t do something, either way you’re right.”

So, Remember …….. Do It While You’re Young. Forever Young !!!

kayaking abra river, abra, philippines Do it While You’re Young 2018

Please Click on the link If you are interested to read the full Interview with Travel Continuously

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Do it While You’re Young

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