Tweet Yourself To A Younger You
Editor's Note: This piece originally appeared in The Huffington Post in April 2014. With the author's permission, we've republished it here. We have all heard the saying “60 is the new 40.” For us baby boomers, aging is truly a different experience than it was for our parents and grandparents. Gone are the “grandmas” of yesterday in their dusters, always baking and identified for the most part through their husbands. Gone too are the grandpas in their recliners who only get up for the next meal or to go fishing.
We are more fit, more fun and more happening than previous generations. We wear similar clothing, like the same music and enjoy the same movies, books and television shows.
Plastic surgery, Botox, fillers and peels can keep us looking younger (if you go to someone good and in moderation) — or if taken too far — like old women, unwrinkled and fish-lipped who can’t move their faces.
But the secret to staying young? Keeping up in our technological world. Want to instantly age yourself? Be the person who “doesn’t get Twitter,” can’t figure out Facebook and won’t even consider texting or Instagram. Be the one who never uses a computer — better yet call it a “machine” and “don’t do email.” Yep. Be that person. And you are old.
Just this week I tweeted my 7,000th tweet. I have almost 2,600 followers and yes, I love Twitter (Full disclosure — I am a journalist and began my Twitter career in the Blagojevich courtroom live-tweeting both trials.)
Twitter is not frivolous. In fact, it is used by businesses, hospitals, media, universities and government agencies.
I have reconnected with friends and found many sources for my news reporting with Twitter and Facebook.
In the earliest days of Twitter, major stories broke on Twitter, not on CNN. When a Continental Airlines crashed in Denver in 2008, Twitter broke the story. It was first to report the earthquake in China in 2008 and terrorism in Mumbai. The Iranian election in 2009 was a Twitter event with reportedly 2,500 updates per minute. And we learned on Twitter that Bin Laden was dead — in fact Keith Urbahn, the former chief of staff for Donald Rumsfeld tweeted, “So I’m told by a reputable person they have killed Osama Bin Laden. Hot damn.” That was supposedly Twitter’s biggest scoop.
And the scoops continue today. You can turn on cable news and watch an endless loop of theories about the Malaysian air crash (or what I sometimes call “beating a dead horse”). Or go to your Twitter feed and a world of information is at your fingertips. Assuming you follow reputable people who are tweeting accurate news, you can learn more in just a few minutes about the stories of the day than from cable news.
This morning’s Twitter feed: I learned that the Supreme Court struck down limits on Federal campaign contributions, that hospitals in the UK are on alert for the Ebola virus, that March was the first month without a U.S. combat death in more than a decade, that Brad Pitt’s production company lands rights to the Steubenville story and that juicing may not be so good for us.
Twitter can be used to find a job, research an illness, check out a movie review or a hurricane. It will allow you to see what the world is talking about. Skeptical? Turn into Twitter next time there is a big event: A Presidential election, the Academy Awards, Super Bowl or State of the Union. The feed is fast and furious.
So baby boomers. Want to stay young and current? Get yourself a Twitter handle. (Mine is @Msjournalist)
Pick a photo. Write a description — here’s mine:
Here is Hillary Clinton’s ( love her description):
Use a hash tag (# sign) to search for what interests you. Start tweeting. I promise you won’t regret it.