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19 Signs You’re Unusually Reflective For Your Age

From one old 20-something to the rest of my kind: Embrace your old lady habits!
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Being an old soul is both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, we’ve got wisdom beyond our years. On the other hand, most of our friends are twice our age because those darned kids these days just don’t get it. (Picture me shaking my cane at the kids on my grass.) Yeah, it’s not really something that we strive for, it just sort of happens: One day we wake up and realize that we’re a little old lady in a 20-something body.

My girlfriend gets a kick out of calling me a little old lady. She likes to joke that I’m her “cougar”, even though I’m barely a year older than her. It’s funny to me, because I know I’m really only 25. But then my joints start to ache and I’m ready to curl up in bed and crochet.

It goes a little deeper than that, though. Us “old souls” are often a little more stuck in our heads than those who “embrace their youth”. We think things through a little more, and everything is put to the “five-year-plan” to see if it really fits. The immature out there might think this makes us boring old fuddy-duddies, but the truth is, we’re just more thoughtful than our peers.

We value things that these kids haven’t learned to appreciate yet, and there’s nothing wrong with that.


1. Everything we think about has to fit into our past, present, and future.

This means we think about things for a really long time before we make a final decision – but when we do, we’re strong in our convictions and we’re not going to bend.


2. We aren’t afraid to get old.

Maybe because we’re already old inside. At least if we look old, too, we’ll stop getting carded for the wine we need to put up with the less reflective among us.


3. We’re a lot smarter than our peers.

And yeah, some of us might judge those peers for being less intelligent. But for the most part, we just can’t understand how they don’t know that Africa is a continent. Not a country. (Really.) Or there’s the differences between your/you’re and their/there/they’re…


4. Technology evades us sometimes.

I’ve always considered myself pretty tech-savvy. Until I have a tech problem. And then I feel like a total n00b and I text my best friend so he can walk me through the process of not punching my computer monitor.


5. People hit us up for advice… a lot.

And, because you’re focused on the future, you try to find a way to get paid for said advice.


6. We can’t stand lousy tippers.

Waiters, cab drivers, and nail technicians are barely scraping by, and tipping should be included in your going-out budget. It’s just rude to not tip them because you can’t be bothered. How would you feel if you were in their shoes?


7. Drinking loses some of its appeal.

When you’re unusually reflective, drinking with your friends is at a much slower pace than your peers. In fact, you might not even be able to “keep up” with your friends, but that’s okay – at least you’re not going to puke all over the stairs.


8. Books are some of our closest friends.

There’s some debate as to whether Kindle books count here, but I totally think they do. With my Kindle, my book collection is well over 300 – if we’re only counting ink-on-acid-free-pages, it’s about 50.


9. We resisted the pull of the smartphones for far longer than most anyone else.

I had a little slider phone until 2013, and I loved that stupid thing. Sure, it took forever to text, but surprisingly I actually kept up with my friends more when I had to use T9. Ah, T9 – how much better than autocorrect you are.


10. Disappearing off the face of the planet actually sounds kind of nice.

Being off-the-grid is a super comfortable experience, and where your friends might hate not being the center of attention, you would much rather go on sabbatical. You’d do it every day if you could, but that would just be weird… Right?


11. “Stuff” doesn’t matter.

Reflective individuals do not care about your material things and your consumerism. Sure, we’ve got stuff – but we don’t really care about our stuff as much as our peers do. The newest gadget and the hottest clothes really don’t do anything for us.


12. Experiences matter.

Travelling. Foreign films. Trying new restaurants. How could anyone rather buy things? I’d rather have my memories, thanks.


13. If we’re torn between going out or staying in… We stay in.

We know that staying in helps to save our budget. We also know that alone time is a wonderful gift, and not everyone can afford that luxury – why would you squander it just getting hungover?


14. We’d rather have a French press and a jazz CD than go to a coffee shop.

Probably because most people our age are absolutely clueless about life. But no, tell me again how hard your life is now that your parents won’t do your laundry anymore.


15. We’re empathetic, to a fault.

We can see both sides of every argument, even if it means we’re arguing against ourselves. In fact, we’re so used to arguing against ourselves that you probably won’t have to do much arguing of your own. You’re welcome.


16. We’re more philosophical than most.

There are some differences in where this philosophy comes from. Mine was ingrained at a very young age, but some people might not find theirs until later in life. Doesn’t matter – philosophy beats everything but logic.


17. We can predict how your relationship is going to pan out.

That’s because we actually pay attention – closer attention than most of our peers. Usually we sit back and let you enjoy the surprises, but if you ask, be prepared for a very detailed answer.


18. We want partners who are reflective, too.

Because that old saying it’s the thought that counts was not, in fact, about gifts, but rather about common sense. (This probably is not true, but it sounds right.) We would rather have a partner who listens to us than one who buys us things.


19. Our alone time is the best time.

We know that there’s no shame in being alone – and, in fact, it offers us the chance to recharge our socialization batteries and prepare for more introspection in the future. Those darned kids just don’t get it.

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Barbara is a 26-year-old lesbian living in California with her partner (and their “fur babies” - an adorably chubby puppy named Porkchop and a ball python named Ru). In the spare time she pretends to have, she enjoys horror movies, music of all varieties, reading, and complaining about the weather.

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