June Brown, 92, isn’t changing her bad habits to live longer…
Read an article from LADBible about June Brown, or “Dot Cotton’s” approaching her 93rd birthday.
The piece caught my attention because it focused on her attitude toward aging and bad habits. The actress says she has no plans to lead a healthier lifestyle and quit smoking or drinking alcohol because ‘what’s the point?’ – implying that she would die soon, and would much rather enjoy her remaining time here, rather than try to cultivate new habits at the last-minute.
Is it possible to have her mindset at 25, however, most of us seem to battle with ourselves about what we should do vs what we’re actually doing. We tend to carry guilt about our bad habits and create New Year’s resolutions – intended to clean up those habits. We fast during Lent, and donate items to charity to purge ourselves of the unneeded or unwanted clutter in our lives.
But it rarely works out.
Senescence-Misinfluence: The Reverse Psychology of Aging
Like drugs, bad habits are hard to overcome.
June Brown’s attitude is to reject the idea of overcoming bad habits.
This is atypical in modern media because we typically do all that we can to prevent and avoid aging. This ‘senescence-misinfluence tendency’ implies that we all share a fear of aging. Further, there is a natural loss of certain skills and abilities as we get older, and most people want to avoid this loss at any cost.
But what happens when we cross that threshold and are officially considered “old?”
Brown’s already 92.
She’s allergic to dark chocolate but eats it anyway.
She smokes cigarettes and drinks Guinness and red wine.
In an interview, she said:
“I’m going to die of something fairly soon so why not enjoy myself.
I love red wine and also dark chocolate, even though I’m allergic to it and it makes me sneeze.”
Seems Like Ancient History
The 92-year-old first stepped on to Albert Square 34 years ago. That’s not so long, but for a television personality, it’s a lifetime. “What’s the point of counting how many cigarettes I smoke a day? I’ve been on them for over 70 years,” she said recently.
She attempted to change her ways with an e-cigarette:
“I did try one of those new electronic cigarettes but it was so heavy it kept falling out of my mouth, so that went in the bin.” A common challenge for vapers and e-cigarette users.
“You can have the best gadget in the world, but if you can’t read the instructions, what’s the point?… I’ve got an iPhone but it’s too much like a computer. All this technology is supposed to bring people together, but because so many elderly people can’t get to grips with it, they feel even more isolated.”
“They’ve no one to talk to and nothing to bring them to life.”
She makes a good point.
If your target demographic is the elderly or retirees who are already considered “old” – it’s a good idea to keep in mind the reverse psychology of aging.
It is completely contradictive to human nature.
But there are some important things to note… Once someone has aged, they may no longer care to fit in, or please others, maintain youth, or change whatsoever.
The decisions they’ve made are somewhat irrelevant, and they have a general sense of how much time they’ve got left.
Their newfound vulnerability is analogous to dying without regret.
They want to finish their life happily and have a very ‘no holds barred’ attitude.
Featured Image Credit: BBC