1012 Months

by Irwin Lengel

A recent article I read about comparing our lives in months versus years got me to thinking about my next post and what follows is my take on this interesting concept.

1012 - Did you know that is how many months a man reaching 65 today can expect to live or looking at it in a different light, having reached 65 years of age or 780 months, one might just have 232 more months to live. For women reaching the age of 65 today, they can expect to live 1039 months in their lifetime thus providing them with 259 more months to live.

Think about that for a moment? Most of us say to ourselves once we reach say age 65 or 70, “Well, if I am lucky, I may just live another ten years or so!” But, if we age ourselves by months, that same individual might be spouting off, “Well, if I am lucky, I may just live another 120 months or so!” Doesn’t sound so short anymore – does it?

And here is another piece of good news – those are just averages. According to statistics compiled by the Social Security Administration, about one out of every four 65-year-olds today will live past age 90 (1080 months), and one out of 10 will live past age 95 (1140 months).

Think about it, perhaps life would be easier to navigate were we to measure a person’s life in months versus in years. As I write this, today is the last day of August and tomorrow is the first day of September. Even though we know that Christmas is still four months away (one wouldn’t think that by some of the displays already appearing in stores), some of us may even be thinking about our New Year’s Resolutions already.

New Years and those New Years’ resolutions we continually make but never follow through. Most of us make those resolutions but rarely keep them because we are gung ho in January to make changes but when it comes to the “rubber meeting the road,” they fall by the wayside. Let’s face it setting a resolution for the whole year is like crossing the desert in a thermal basic-layer vest, long johns, and muck-lucks. Deep down in our hearts we know we want to make some change, but sometimes we tend to set ourselves up to fail before we even begin.

If, however, we lived our lives by a monthly calendar versus a yearly one, perhaps we would set resolutions and stick to them. Who knows, we may not only resolve them but chances are that we may accomplish more “resolutions” due to addressing them on a monthly basis versus a yearly basis.

Come September, we begin counting down the months until Christmas and New Years’, you know 4,3,2, then 1 and we begin all over again with 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 until Christmas and New Year come around again. Thinking like this opens our eyes and causes us to look around. What has changed? Nothing! And now we have yet another whole new year to get through. Is it any wonder why we feel exhausted before we even start?

Fact of the matter is just this, whether we feel exhausted, consumed, depleted, or what have you – none of these words capture the feeling we have within ourselves. It’s like being trapped within a tunnel seeing that not only is there an end but there is also a light at the end of the tunnel. The problem though is that the more you travel towards the opening, the opening appears to be getting farther and farther away.

Back to my comments about numbers! Look at it this way, dealing in years, were one to be told that they only have a year to live – how would we feel? As though our time was too short! But if we dealt in months and you were told you had twelve months to live, while the outcome is going to be the same, one might say to themselves – hmmm - how much can I achieve in the next twelve months?

For most of us, hopefully those numbers mentioned above – 1012 for men and 1039 for women are fairly accurate. Seeing that a few hundred have already been and gone and September is upon us so another one just bit the dust, a new way to look at life is to live by the month. In that way our goals may still appear attainable and we can continue to plan ahead one month at a time. What this accomplishes is the fact that, just perhaps, we will feel like we will be able to reach whatever goals we set, no matter what obstacles cross our paths!

Until next time!

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