11 Things You Can (And Should) Consider Saying Yes To After Age 50

As we age, it increasingly seems like we're supposed to start saying "no" to all the good stuff. "No" to that extra pizza topping — too many calories. "No" to dessert, unless it's just a small taste, or basically devoid of flavor. "No" even to salads if the dressing is too heavy, or if we dare to top it with some extra cheese.

But isn't life too short to eat bland food? Sensitive to our plight, our partners at Green Giant have developed 74 varieties of sauced, seasoned and plain vegetables under 100 calories — great taste you can actually say "yes" to.

This got us thinking: If we can say yes to sauce, what else should we consider saying yes to as we get older (food or otherwise)? We've put together 11 ideas for inspiration below, but we also want to hear from you: what are you saying yes to now that you're post-50? Let us know in the comments or tweet your own #sayyes ideas to @Live_Better. We'll feature the cleverest contributions!

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  • Nice Wine

    You know by now that you deserve better. Wine, that is. Stop telling yourself that it tastes the same no matter the price, and say yes to the occasional splurge on a bottle that's only slightly more expensive — but can instantly make you feel like a million bucks.

  • Stretching

    If we don't keep moving as we age, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/26/stretch-safely-for-flexibility-_n_1909997.html">our joints can lose their flexibility</a>, leaving us prone to injury. So say yes to stretching regularly to increase your range of motion!

  • Spontaneous Travel

    You've spent your whole life thinking about your next move, so start saying yes to a little unplanned adventure from time to time. Head somewhere you've never been before this weekend — and <em>don't</em> bring an itinerary.

  • A Super-Comfortable Mattress

    More than ever, you deserve a good night's sleep — and not just because good sleep plays an important role in keeping you healthy. So say yes to a mattress that helps make that happen, and maybe some extra-luxurious bedding while you're at it. The <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/10/pick-best-mattress_n_1872048.html">kind of mattress that's best for you</a> depends on your preferred sleep position, but remember: your body changes as you age, and your mattress needs might too.

  • Reinvention

    "I believe that you're never too old to live your dreams or pursue something that will make a difference," says Danielle Coulanges, who quit her job in finance to become a junior high school teacher at age 55. But reinvention doesn't have to be drastic — start by focusing on <em>one</em> thing you'd really like to improve about yourself (get to bed by 11 p.m. every night, or start volunteering for just 2 hours every week) and go from there. Check out Live Better America's <a href="http://www.livebetteramerica.com/do-better-board?nicam5=PARTNERSHIPS&nichn5=AOL&niseg5=TDCORE_LBA&esrc=16549">Do Better Board</a> for more daily inspiration.

  • Opportunities To Learn Something New

    It's never too late to fall in love with a new hobby or perfect a new skill, and there's nothing like the gratifying feeling of having accomplished just that. Plus, studies show that <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/memory-loss/HA00001">keeping your brain active can help prevent memory loss</a>. So say yes to learning and experimenting whenever you can!

  • Your Close-Up

    You may have spent many years <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/allison-tate/mom-pictures-with-kids_b_1926073.html">behind the camera and out of the frame while the kids were growing up</a>, but start saying yes right now to actually being <em>in</em> the picture. The people who love you don't care about the laughlines or that extra five or ten pounds — they just want a picture with you in it, and you should, too.

  • Accepting Help When It's Offered

    By now, you've proven your independence, but it's okay to say yes to a little help once in a while. So when your daughter's boyfriend wants to help you move that new couch up the stairs, let him! And when your best friend offers to lend you her car for the day because yours is in the shop, take her up on it — just make sure to return the favor the next time she's in a bind.

  • Getting Rid Of Your Old Cosmetics/Electronics/Kids Toys/etc.

    If it no longer works, or you have a new version that works better, get rid of it. If you haven't used it in the past year, toss it. If you had totally forgotten that you even owned it... you get the idea. De-cluttering can help you feel more in control of your life, which in turn <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gretchen-rubin/clutter-mentality-happiness-project_b_1987509.html">can help you feel happier</a>.

  • Taking Back Your Social Life

    You're about to have a lot more time on your hands when the kids move out and develop busy, important lives of their own. Savor it by devoting your newfound free time to the friends that are most important to you.

  • "Can I See Your ID, Please?"

    Someone is unsure of whether or not you're under the age of 21? This person deserves a tip and possibly a kiss on the cheek, not an eye roll.

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