Using drip coffee
Millennials strive for ease in every area of their lives – including coffee. Forgoing the long wait for brewing, the messy filter change, and manually grinding the coffee, the youth of today prefer their drinks to be instant, grabbing them from big chains like Starbucks. If you’re still drinking drip coffee, you may be behind the times.
Printing out documents
Physical documents are a thing of the past. Forget trying to battle with your temperamental printer, young people keep everything as a digital copy on their phone. Boarding passes, receipts, concert tickets, and prescriptions can all be accessed in just a few clicks, leaving clunky paper pages as a thing of the past.
Going to bed early
There’s nothing wrong with getting a healthy amount of shut-eye. What is a problem, however, is if you’re extremely rigid about getting your eight hours of sleep. If you cancel plans or decline invitations purely to get in your PJs, you may be acting older than your years.
Having no social life
As we approach middle age, our social circle tends to get smaller and smaller. Our lives become busier, leaving friendships to fall by the wayside. However, having no social life whatsoever, constantly spending all day every day in the comfort of your own home, is a dead giveaway of an aged soul.
Using a map
Paper maps are clunky, easily torn, and cumbersome. Instead, the younger generation use maps on their phones, able to pinpoint any location in seconds. You get bonus age points if you ask for directions, with the youth of today preferring the solitude of their map app over human interaction.
Not having a smartphone
In this day and age, smartphones are essential. If you’re still using your beaten-up Nokia from 2001, it may be time to consider getting an upgrade. Not only will you seem younger, but the slew of apps available will change your life, allowing you to stay in touch with your friends and family in mere seconds.
Using the home phone
If you still own a landline phone, it should be treated as an early-2000s relic as opposed to a vital utility. The worst offense is if you call from your home phone, as nowadays, everything’s done from your cell, with youths even preferring to text than call.
Wearing too much mascara
Many women over a certain age make the dire mistake of slapping on too much makeup in an attempt to hide their age. Ironically, it has the opposite effect. Keep your makeup light and simple – particularly when it comes to mascara. Stripping back on cosmetics will give you a natural, youthful glow.
Checks are all but obsolete. Give a youngster a check and watch their face fill with confusion, wondering how a slip of strange paper can equate to actual money. Nowadays, most banking is done digitally, leaving these scraps of paper as a mere memory of times long since passed.
Why send a postcard when you can send a selfie? Save those hard-earned dollars and put down the overpriced holiday tat. Instead, send your friends and family a photo – or, if you’re feeling particularly generous, a video – allowing them to see how much you’re enjoying your vacation.
Eating the same old meals
There’s nothing wrong with sticking to foods that you know you enjoy. However, if you absolutely, point-blank refuse to try any dishes outside of your usual rotation, you may be showing your age. There’s a big wide culinary world out there – you may be yet to discover your favorite meal.
Using single-use plastics
Generally speaking, it’s the younger generation that cares more about the planet. If you frequently use single-use plastics, it’s a clear indicator that you haven’t kept up with societal changes, ignoring the youths’ desperate pleas to save the turtles. Try to reduce your plastic use – it’s trendy to be eco-friendly.
Paying with cash
Currency is a hot debate at the moment, with many people thinking that the rise of digital spending spells out the beginnings of an Orwellian society. Whatever your views are on the matter, there’s a clear divide, with younger folk preferring to deal with their finances through digital means.
Not dressing for your age
Donning clothing that your daughter wears isn’t a good look. In fact, it can age you significantly, showing someone who refuses to age gracefully. Just because you could pull it off 20 years ago, it doesn’t mean you can now. Your body changes as you age, and your wardrobe needs to reflect that.
Refusing to budge from your routine
A routine is a good thing, allowing you to squeeze the most potential out of each and every day. If you point-black refuse to budge from your planned day, however, then you’re likely showing your age. Older people tend to be uncomfortable with change, whereas younger folk are more likely to go with the flow.
Being rude or aggressive
Historically, the older generation tends to look down on youngsters, claiming that they’re rude and disrespectful. In reality, the opposite is true. Those who are middle-aged and above tend to be ruder to customer service staff, loudly complaining to minimum-wage earners about situations that are far beyond their control.
Ordering from catalogs
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a physical catalog nowadays, with shopping primarily being purchased online. In the rare circumstance that you do manage to find a catalog, you may want to think twice before you place your order. Ordering the old-fashioned way may feel familiar, but it’s a clear sign of an older soul.
Being afraid of tech
Using technology can be scary, with confusing apps, daunting programs, and intimidating error messages causing anxiety for many older people. However, it doesn’t change the fact that if you’re a technophobe, you’re behind the times. You don’t have to be perfect – all you can do is try your best to wrangle your mind around the challenging world of all things technological.
Sending a handwritten letter may have a personal touch, but it’s also outdated. In the modern era, messages are sent digitally, with WhatsApp and text messaging replacing the paper and ink combo. Thank-you notes, invitations, and Christmas well-wishes are all done via electronic means. It may be less personal, but it’s a darn sight easier.
Failing to recycle
In the modern era, everyone has to do their bit to save the environment. If you still don’t have separate bins for your waste, you’re likely aging yourself. Younger people tend to prioritize eco-friendly behaviors like recycling, knowing that small actions today can lead to big differences for future generations.
An inability to leave your comfort zone
As we age, we tend to stick to what we know. While this can keep us comfortable, it can also lead to a mundane existence. You’re never too old to start living your life, whether it’s by joining a new club or jetting off on that dream vacation – age is just a number, after all!
Early meal times
Eating your dinner in the afternoon is a surefire way to display your age. Older people tend to sleep and rise at earlier hours, leading to increased hunger levels throughout the day. While there’s nothing wrong with catering to your body’s needs, eating early may raise a few eyebrows amongst the younger crowd.
Staying stuck in the past
We all like to reminisce every now and then, reflecting on fond memories that uplift our spirits. What’s ill-advised, however, is being stuck in the past. A refusal to fit into the modern era will make you stick out like a sore thumb, clearly displaying your age for all to see.
Watching cable television
Even the way we watch TV has changed. Ask most youngsters about what they watched last night, and it’ll rarely be a show that aired on terrestrial television. Instead, the focus has shifted to streaming services, with Disney+, Netflix, and Amazon Prime being the latest way to consume media, with thousands of shows available to watch at any time of day.
Slippers are synonymous with OAPs. As comfortable as they may be, it’s wise to only wear this type of footwear in the comfort of your own home, keeping the judgmental eyes of the youth of today at bay. Placing comfort before fashion is a clear sign that you’re getting older, after all.
Not acknowledging mental health
Although mental health seems to be a relatively new phenomenon, it’s something that has plagued humanity for centuries. In the 21st century, we’re able to pinpoint these negative sensations. Refusing to acknowledge others’ – or your own – mental well-being will lead to a lonely, miserable existence. Seeking help is nothing to be ashamed of.
Not updating your wardrobe
Just because you’re comfortable in an outfit, it doesn’t mean you have to wear it everyday. Our garments become worn with time, so constantly donning your favorite cardigan can give off a shabby, aged appearance. Update your clothing once in a while, breathing some new life into your wardrobe.
Trying to keep up with trends
Sometimes, it’s best to leave the youngsters to their own devices. Trying to cling on to current TikTok trends just shows a desperate attempt at clinging to one’s youth, doing anything to remain relevant. Of course, if you actually enjoy these trends, fill your boots – there’s no age limit on enjoyment.
It’s a trait of the older generation to leave a friendly voicemail. Most young people tend to skip the voicemail altogether, sending whatever they were going to say on the call via text message. If you do continue to leave voicemails, don’t be surprised if they’re ignored entirely.
Reading the newspaper
It’s important to keep up to date with the goings on in the world. However, physical newspapers are slowly dying out. Instead, most people tend to keep up with the news on their cell phones, having a mine of information just a few clicks away.
Posting on Facebook
Facebook isn’t to be used, it’s to scroll through! Most of the younger crowd rarely post anything on their news feed, instead choosing to scroll through endless amounts of memes. Besides, posting your personal business all over the internet for anyone to see isn’t exactly safe.
Having a physical calendar
There’s nothing quite like having a calendar hanging from your wall, a daily reminder of all the tasks and events you’ve yet to fulfill. In the modern era, however, physical calendars are a thing of the past, with the youth of today choosing to use their digital counterparts.
Doing crosswords and puzzles
Crosswords, word searches, and Sudoku are all wonderful ways to quiet the mind, keeping your brain nice and active. However, these types of puzzles are typically reserved for the more mature crowd. If you’re looking to hide your age, it’s best to do these puzzles in the comfort of your own home.
We all love a good moan from time to time, putting the world to rights with a close pal. However, endlessly complaining tends to be a trait of the older generation, finding anything and everything to moan about. Shift your mindset – not only will you seem younger and full of life, you’ll feel better for focusing on more positive subjects.
Being adverse to loud music
We all remember our parents complaining about loud music, constantly being asked to turn down our stereos. Before you know it, you’re that parent, suddenly an enemy to any form of booming bass. Music should be kept to a respectable level, but so should your complaints.
Gossiping about people
We’re all guilty of it – gossiping about the neighbors, or making snide remarks about our coworkers. Although it may seem like a conversation topic, it’s actually a sign of your age. Many youngsters avoid gossip, choosing instead to focus on more positive matters. If you want to hide your age, it’s time to rethink your water cooler chat.
The way you hold your phone
It may sound strange, but the way that you hold your phone can be a dead giveaway of age. The youngsters of today tend to type with their thumbs, securing the cell with their fingers. For some reason, the older crowd tends to type with their fingers, slowing down the entire texting process.
Eating hard candy
Hard candies are synonymous with the elderly. As delicious as they may be, dishing them out to your friends and family may make them all too aware of the gray hairs that are beginning to sprout. Besides, they’re full of sugars that can lead to numerous health complications.
Obsessively watching the news
It’s good to keep up with current affairs, maintaining an understanding of what’s going on in the world. However, if you watch the news at an obsessive level, it may be time to mix up your routine. Not only does it show your age, but constantly consuming negative media has been proven to have detrimental effects on mental health.
Critiquing the younger generation
If you find yourself saying phrases such as “back in my day” or “the youth of today…” it’s wise to stop yourself in your tracks. You’re looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, glamorizing the past, while simultaneously making you seem older than your years.
A distrust of people
These days, you never know who you can trust, with violence and crimes continuously on the rise. However, if you find yourself constantly peering out of your window, muttering to yourself about the distasteful-looking youths strutting past your house, you’re exhibiting behaviors that may remind you of your own parents…
You value hard work – at all costs
There’s nothing wrong with working hard – you get what you put into life, after all! However, times have changed. Now, working hard gets you nowhere – if anything, it results in you being taken advantage of by bosses, their greedy eyes glinting at the prospect of more work for the same pay. The younger generation has wised up to this concept, with boomers not quite catching on.
Modern music sounds like noise
Songs just aren’t what they used to be, are they? Nowadays, they’re full of booming basses and fast-paced lyrics, lacking the heart and soul of songs from decades long since passed. Still, perhaps it’s best to keep this opinion to yourself – a distaste of modern music is a rite of passage that only comes with getting older.
This one is a generalization, but statistics don’t lie. Studies have shown that the older generation tends to lean into right-wing politics, whereas younger folk prefer more Democratic candidates. Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, of course, but the age divide when it comes to politics is clear – older people generally vote Republican.
You frown on facial hair
Once upon a time, beards were seen as a sign of disrespect – an indicator of unkemptness that offended the entire neighborhood. Nowadays, facial hair is seen as a fashion statement, with young men rocking their beards with unabashed confidence. A distaste for facial hair shows that you’re still stuck in the past.
You prefer phone calls to texts
If you find yourself being slightly offended that your kids haven’t called you in a while, don’t take it personally. The younger crowd prefers to communicate through the medium of text messaging, with phone calls slowly but surely dying out. If you want to get with the times, start texting!
You always tip
Young people are starting to become adverse to tipping. Not out of spite to the workers, but at the big guns that run the company. Instead of consumers providing front-line workers with their wages, millennials are realizing that the responsibility actually lies at the top of the food chain. By not tipping, they hope that this flawed system will change.
You use reading glasses
If you’re constantly reaching for your reading glasses whenever your children show you something, it’s a clear sign that age is catching up to you. It can’t be helped, of course – and it’s certainly nothing to be ashamed of – the inevitable process of aging eventually comes for us all.
Eating out confuses you
Back in the day, going to a restaurant was a simple affair – the waiter would take your order, bring your food, and bring your bill. Now, ordering your food has gone digital, with complicated QR codes used to merely view the menu. Then, somehow, you order through your phone, without needing to speak to a single person.
Self-scan scares you
Long gone are the days when you could have a pleasant chat with the cashier at the grocery store. Now, shoppers are encouraged to scan their own groceries, freeing up time and queues. However, the constant berating of “There’s an unexpected item in the bagging area” is enough to fill most older folk with a sense of endless dread.
You don’t return the shopping cart
The ultimate test of ethics – whether or not you return the shopping cart at the store. Many older people choose not to, claiming that it “gives the workers something to do”. What they fail to realize, however, is that most organizations are severely understaffed, and the small act of returning your cart helps workers tenfold.
You think that young people don’t want to work
With numerous businesses having to close due to a lack of staff, you may be laboring under the delusion that people just don’t want to work anymore. However, that’s not entirely true. Millenials and Gen Zs simply refuse to be taken advantage of, leaving jobs that enforce unrealistic (and sometimes illegal) practices.
You think young people are too sensitive
If you frequently use the word “snowflake”, you’re giving away your age. You may hold the view that everyone’s too sensitive these days, with younger people taking offense to near enough everything. However, when you consider that Elvis Presley was once considered inappropriate, it shows that society at large always manages to find something to complain about.
Appliances now excite you
Purchasing a brand-new iron or microwave may have been a hindrance to your finances, once upon a time. Now, you look forward to trying out your new gadget, finding joy in operating the new appliance. Worse still is if you show it off to your friends and family, bragging about your new kettle’s settings.
You get annoyed if someone sits in your seat
Having a designated seat in your home is relatively common, with each member of the household having their chosen location. However, if you religiously stick to this layout, growing frustrated when someone sits in your spot, your gray hairs won’t be the only thing that gives away your age.
You brag about getting up early… Only to fall asleep
People who get up at 5am ensure that everyone knows about it. They brag to their families about how much they managed to get done in the morning while they were busy slumbering in their beds. Then, 6pm rolls around, and they fall asleep on the sofa. Sound familiar? If so, you may be acting older than you realize.
You refuse help
Whether it’s someone offering you a seat on the bus or a cashier asking if you need help packing your bags, you may stubbornly refuse their offers of aid. This refusal harbors hidden insecurities about getting older – ironically only drawing more attention to your subconscious fears.
You start acting like your parents
If you catch yourself repeating phrases your parents once uttered, you may already realize that you’re showing your age. Whether it’s phrases like “If you live under my house, you abide by my rules”, or “There’s just no respect, these days”, you may have a sudden new-found respect for your parents’ opinions.
When visiting your children, you may move items around their home, claiming that they look better in the new location. While it may be done with good intentions, it’s a habit that is usually reserved for the older crowd, inputting their opinion where it’s not always wanted.
You have little patience
It’s a known fact, as you get older, your patience wanes. Whether it’s grumbling about waiting in a lengthy queue, or muttering to yourself whenever you’re put on hold, older people are infamously terrible at waiting for things. Likely, it’s because of the thought of your own mortality lingering at the back of your mind, not wishing to waste a single second.
You still work, even though you don’t have to
Taking your retirement may seem like you’re admitting to your age. Instead, you choose to continue to be employed, putting that high work ethic to good use. Many younger people may be confused by this choice – but you know that keeping active and social is key to living a happier, healthier life.
You want to speak to a “real person”
All forms of automation may strike fear in your heart, with robotic phone operators causing a great deal of aggravation. What happened to the good old days, when you could call a company and immediately have a human being on the other end of the phone?
Movies just aren’t as good, nowadays
If you long for the golden age of cinema, claiming that classics like The Godfather and Top Gun were the pinnacle of the film industry, you may be showing your age. In reality, you’re viewing movies through rose-tinted glasses, with nostalgia skewing your view. Films are just as good nowadays, you just have to be willing to give them a try.
“I want to speak to your manager”
If this phrase is in frequent use in your vocabulary, you may be coming off older than you realize. Older people are more likely than young ‘uns to make demands to speak to the person in charge in retail environments. What they fail to realize, however, is that managers are usually just glorified workers – underpaid and overworked – leading to a great deal of apathy.
You keep receipts
There’s nothing wrong with keeping a record of your purchases – they’re a necessity it comes to returning something, after all. However, it’s a habit that seems to be slowly dying out, with the youth of today choosing to try their luck and leave the receipt at the store.
You think millennials should buy less avocado toast
It’s a popular view amongst the older crowd that young people are careless with their money, leading to hundreds of thousands of people unable to buy a home. In reality, the housing crisis isn’t through millennials’ endless spending on luxuries like avocados, but instead due to a fractured, broken economy.
You don’t understand slang
What do “lit” and “fam” mean, anyway? A failure to understand what the youth of today are talking about is a clear sign that you’re slipping into the older generation, leaving the complex lingo to the youngsters. Language changes with time, and, unfortunately, we aren’t always able to keep up with the ever-changing fluctuations.
You regularly check your mail
Let’s face it: Paper documents are a thing of the past. Frequently checking your mailbox is a dead giveaway of an older person, with digital alternatives now replacing the classic paper-and-ink combo. If your bank statement is still delivered to your door, you’re likely behind the times.
Outdated desserts still seem delicious
Sweet treats coated in layers of Jell-O and sugar may still seem delicious to you, despite your family’s outcries. Nowadays, most young people tend to be health-conscious, not daring to go near a meal that’s not vegan or organic. Although it shows your age, at least there’s more dessert for you to nosh on.
You still have a milkman
Ask most a millennial or Gen Z-er about the milkman, and they’re likely to stare at you with a confused gaze. If you still get bottles of milk dropped off at your doorstep, you’re likely exhibiting behaviors of the older generation, with young folk grabbing their milk from the grocery store.
You have an address book
An address book is a handy tool, featuring all of your friends’ and family’s phone numbers and abodes. However, it’s now an outdated practice, with most people choosing to keep their pals’ personal information on their phones, carrying them wherever they go, forgoing the chunky notebooks altogether.
You never update anything
Whether it’s your car, your television, or your computer, you may have stuck to the same old tried and tested gear for most of your life. With the view of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, your appliances and tech may be due for a much-needed upgrade, bringing them into the modern era.
You get annoyed by people being on their phones
You may believe that the youth of today are antisocial, with their faces peering into their phones more than they see the world around them. It’s a warranted belief – with a lot of youngsters choosing to endlessly scroll through their cells as opposed to engaging in real-life conversation.
You have no idea what an influencer is
What is a social media influencer? Someone who posts photos on the internet? What, exactly, do they influence, anyway? You have little knowledge about an influencer’s real role in society, nor do you have any desire to learn. Back in your day, people had real jobs – not getting paid for posting pictures online.
You believe in proper jobs
You may see artistic endeavors as a hobby as opposed to an actual career, recoiling when a young family member claims they’re leaving their office job to pursue their life’s purpose. It’s a habit of the older crowd to value more traditional workplaces above obscure methods of earning a living.
You think that you know best
With age comes experience. With experience comes an deep knowledge of how the world works, using past memories to influence how the future plays out. However, just because you’ve got a heap load of experience, it doesn’t immediately mean your opinion is correct. Different generations all bring different skills to the table, each as valuable as the other.
You keep everything
Older folk have a habit of holding onto everything and anything, claiming that their mass of stray objects may, one day, be useful. Forgoing the concept of minimalism, your drawers may be littered with odd trinkets that you’ve acquired over the years, unable to part with them. Who knows – that old tangled up mass of wires you’ve had since 1993 may come in handy one day.
You’re constantly misplacing things
It’s an unfortunate fact of life, but as we age, our memories falter. This can lead to constantly losing your keys, or forever misplacing your glasses (only to later realize they’re on top of your head). Don’t be ashamed of your waning memory – it’ll happen to us all.
You complain about your aches and pains
Growing older isn’t fun, with once-simple activities now resulting in days of pain. Getting up out of your chair now requires a hefty groan, while sleeping anywhere other than your bed will give you a week’s worth of neck ache. If you want to hide your age, it may be best to keep these complaints to yourself.
You love an afternoon nap
By the time you’ve passed your middle-age years, it’s likely that you enjoy a good nap. Resetting your system, naps allow us a brief moment of respite in our day, waking up ready to tackle the remainder of the afternoon and evening. If your nap is non-negotiable, you may be getting on a bit.