We associate the word agnostic with a religious belief, but according to Webster’s broader definition, an agnostic is “a person who believes that nothing is known or can be known of anything beyond material phenomena or a person with an orientation of doubt; a doubter.” It definitely has negative connotations, but if we are age agnostic, we might doubt that age is a predictor of our future, and that could be positive belief. I have recently come into contact with a gentleman that has truly inspired me. He seems to have no concept of age, and I believe he is a perfect example of an age agnostic.
Lou (changed his name) lives in Kansas City and he reached out to me because he learned about my work on the Internet (he is very adept with the computer). This man is a healthy, active 90-year-old and appears to be a true age agnostic. In a nutshell he is looking for part-time work. As we emailed back and forth, it became evident that he had bigger goals and the first was additional income. But the expression of his talents and desires amazed me. He said, “I want a more whole and fulfilling life. One piece of this is to find meaningful part-time work. Ideally it would be work with a small business or community service organization where I could use some of my primary skills. These include good organizing and planning and development skills for programs or events, public relations skills and communication abilities. I am curious and like researching the community, Internet or written documents to obtain information or resources to solve a problem. I like variety in my work and am good at multi-tasking. Working with other people is important, and I would like to develop new friendships. I also want to continue my growth in other areas of my life.”
I kept thinking, surely this man is not 90! This is the résumé of an up and coming millennial. He certainly does not see his age as a limitation of his ability to be productive; age is not a restriction. I want to be an age agnostic like Lou. With his attitude, he’ll probably live to be 120 or more! We live in a world that labels 90 years old as incapable of productivity. I’m looking for ways to support him in his search. If you have ideas, let’s continue the conversation on Facebook at Just Now Old Enough where we celebrate age agnostics!
Connie Mason Michaelis is a lifestyle consultant at www.justnowoldenough.com