Eight Anti-Aging Career Strategies

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If you have ever gotten “the look” when you arrived for a job interview, you know what I mean. It’s the open-eyed, stop-everything look that says the interviewer has noticed something from your appearance that sends up a red flag. Without saying a word, his eyebrows go up and the smile weakens or disappears. It could be a lot of things, but if you’re over 40, or 50 something about you may have triggered the “this person is a lot older than I thought” reaction. Without answering the first interview question, the interview may as well be over before it starts.


Fair or not, age does make a difference. A recent article by Aaron Grossman, "Watch For Signs You Could Be Aging Yourself Out Of A Job," says there are ways to tell if your appearance, attitude or performance is sending a message to your employer or boss that you’re not in the running for a job or promotion. Things like a short, polite interview, caution about a new job being “stressful,” or the fact that you’re somewhat of a fixture in the office because of your tenure are some of the signs listed.  The article suggests getting more training, education or just getting current with trends and practice in your industry. Good advice, but you may consider some changes that can help your “curb appeal” as well. 



  1. Get a checkup. Fatigue, a persistent headache or stiff joints can show in your face, walk or concentration. Even the fear of a health problem can take you off your game. A checkup can help eliminate health issues and put your focus back on your job.
  2. Monitor your medications. Read the information that comes with your prescriptions. Most have side effects that can affect your performance. Some medications have to be adjusted for optimum effect. Your fatigue or headache could be something your doctor can easily correct with a change in dosage.
  3. Stop complaining. It’s fun to shoot the breeze with your coworkers. Going into detail about your bunions or upcoming hip surgery is more information that anyone needs to know and can make others question your future “fitness for duty.”
  4. Get enough sleep. It’s hard to learn new systems or stay sharp in long, complicated negotiations on a few hours of sleep. Turn off the TV or computer and get the seven or eight hours you need to be your best.
  5. Take advantage of your company’s wellness program or just get moving! Exercise is good for the body, mind and attitude. Start slow, but be consistent. Regular exercise keeps the muscles toned and your joints moving.
  6. Participate. Don’t exclude yourself from social events or having lunch with younger co-workers. Be fun to be around. Consider yourself a co-worker, and not the “mother” or “old-timer” of the group.
  7. Exercise your mind. Do you know how to use a Kindle? iPad? Your Smartphone? Technology can be complicated, but learning how to operate the latest technology is exercise for the mind. Read. Keep up with the news, your industry and community. Read some blogs and articles on the Internet from different sources. Get familiar with YouTube. You’ll be able to join in conversations instead of looking clueless or reverting to, “…in my day, we did things this way…”
  8. Resurrect an old hobby. Get back into tennis or golf. Find a bridge, kayaking or classic car club to reconnect with something that was relaxing, exciting or just plain fun. The more interesting you are, the younger you’ll feel. You don’t have to win medals; just be in the game.


Age is a state of mind. Your age is just a number. If you don’t make it an issue, no one else will. Get back in the career game to stay in it.


Image by federico stevanin / freedigitalphotos.net


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  • Mary Nestor-Harper
    Mary Nestor-Harper
    Hi Susan, Congratulations on keeping yourself fit and young looking.  It helps your confidence and mental attitude.  Don't let someone tell you "it's over" at 40!  I think there will be fewer job opportunities, especially for management positions, as the new healthcare laws and other changes become reality, because businesses can't afford to pay for healthcare and higher taxes.  There will be more contractors and part-timers than full-time employees.  You need the technical skills of the 20-somethings and the work ethic of the 50 somethings to make it in the new world of work.  Keep at it.
    I think that there are so many ways to keep yourself looking young.  There are dermal fillers, botox, eat well, have a look at the raw diet, albeit it isn't for everyone, exercise.  take a look at Shania Twain, She is 50, but men still think she is hot.  There is a saying the new 50 is now 40 and the new 40 is now 30.  I am almost 50, but no one has ever guessed me to be in my 40"s. However, I am still looking for work in the pharmaceutical industry-sales. I have been looking for a year. So even though I do what I feel is necessary to keep looking as best as I can, the truth is (because I have been told by many recruiters) once a person hits 40, it is over.  I remain optimistic but it is hard at times I must admit.
  • brenda Thompson
    brenda Thompson
    Thank You. It has opened my eyes to know how to try to improve my attitude adjustment. Please continue helping people to see their need to improve.
  • Mary Nestor-Harper
    Mary Nestor-Harper
    Hi Mary,  Congratulations to your friend that finally landed a job.  Persistence wins out in the job search game, especially when you're competing with so many job searchers who are younger, have newer skills and cost less to hire.  Age is just a number and irrelevant  in an interview.  Image does count, and  making your first impression a person with a youthful attitude and lots of confidence paired with great experience will be hard to beat.  All the best with your job search.
  • Mary D
    Mary D
    I have a dear friend who has 15+ years on me.   She told me of "age discrimination" when she was looking for her last position.  A well qualified legal secretary, it took her 6 months to find a firm who would hire her.  I am a medical assistant, with nine years experience and excellent references.   I am currently looking for work for the first time as a person over the age of 50.  I am finding that my "age" does go against me, though  I don't consider myself old.  Never had this much trouble finding a job.     
  • stephen B
    stephen B
    I agree wholeheartedly with the content posted by Mary!!
  • Nancy K
    Nancy K
    very true- thank you
  • shelia c
    shelia c
    Came across this just when I really needed to hear it. I have thought these thoughts going into an interview, but tried to push them to the back of my mind. But I do know that age and appearance make a difference. I have been slacking this past year, but now that I have read this, I am definitely going to work on improving myself. I know I will have more confidence in the long run, if I do.
  • Christine B
    Christine B
     Thank you for this article.  I am 68 years young,look like 58,blessed with good skin.I am doomed when I fill out the consent for a background check. With my knowledge and experiences thru life would be an asset to an employer.
  • Wilhemina A
    Wilhemina A
    so true..i loved reading the information, helpful to me
  • Mary Nestor-Harper
    Mary Nestor-Harper
    It's amazing how a new outfit, losing a few pounds or losing the grey hair can give your attitude and confidence a boost.  What's more is being able to hold your own in a conversation about current events, technology or the latest trend in your industry.  Keep at it, ladies.  Confidence is your best asset in an interview!
  • patricia l
    patricia l
    you are so right I am 54 and looking for employment now not easy I must say. But I do some of the things you talked about to keep myself in shape and my mind sharp hey GIRLS!!!!!! we still got it going on thanks so much it helps to know you are not the only one going through this,,,,,
  • Carolyn J
    Carolyn J
    I truly agree with this article, I enjoy new conversation,lunchwith the boss for information or just relaxing.Making friend at the gym,or church activity.  Also like to put on clothes for what ever the occasion is.
  • Mary Nestor-Harper
    Mary Nestor-Harper
    Yvonne,So glad this article came at the right time.  Stay hip, fresh and positive, and you'll find the right job.  Your comment made my day!
  • Yvonne M
    Yvonne M
    Thank you so much for this Article..It's  so funny that I ran across this..I just happened to have a interview today and got exactly the response that she'd mentioned in the beginning of the article..I'm 51 now and I sure was treated alot differently when I was younger..But,,Oh well,,like she said if you educate yourself and just be a hip ole granny,,you can still be in the game..thank you so much you really made my day..

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