To feel better about your age, Marianne suggests changing the way you think. Instead of dreading each milestone, you can view that looming birthday as a rite of passage, she says. "When a child reaches adolescence, this puberty, the persona of the child fades away and a new persona of the adolescent comes forward, and society knows this. We know this. We mark it with ceremonies sometimes," Marianne says. "In a way, midlife is a second puberty. The persona of the young adult fades away."
Children often get excited about passing their milestone birthdays, Marianne says, because they understand that growing up will be wonderful—but that's not often the case as you actually get older. "I would look to see, what do I get? And people would say things like maturity and acceptance, and I thought, 'Well, that's not very exciting,'" she says.
People can change those negative thoughts by accepting that age comes with empowerment. "Nobody hits around 40 in our society without something. It could be bankruptcy. It could be divorce. It could be addiction," Marianne says. "Most people at a certain age have fallen down in our society, but the issue is who gets back up and how we get back up, and then you are wise and you are more mature and you are more accepting and you go, 'This is pretty fabulous.'"