What does it mean to be an old soul? Last year, while looking at old home videos, I barely recognised a young, energetic, and hyperactive child who was totally carefree about the future and the complexities of life. I found myself wondering when did I become an old soul? To be clear, physically I am still a relatively young man, despite my need to squint to see far away objects, inability to grow out an afro or the complete and total fear I now feel when thinking I’m catching a cold. Mentally, I still at times have the humour and habits of that same hyperactive child. I don’t mean old soul in a negative sense. When I use the term, I am referring to an internal prompting that sometimes suggests a person disconnected from others in a similar age group or a distant familiar feeling of having experienced certain things before.
Are you or someone you know an old Soul? Here are 4 signs that may suggest that:
Old Soul Sign 1: Deep Appreciation for Mortality
Every Sunday, driving from Queens to Brooklyn, heading to church with my family, we would cross the Kosciuszko Bridge. You could see a beautiful skyline view of midtown Manhattan in the background highlighting the life and bustle of a major metropolitan city. In the foreground however, there is gigantic Calvary Cemetery, with hundreds of graves of extinguished lives. This always prompted thoughts on the fragility of life and the fleeting moments that we have to experience it. These thoughts didn’t just occur on Sundays but frequently during quiet moments of reflection. Old souls usually find themselves thinking of the bigger picture and purpose of life and are keenly aware of the limited time to experience it. This can be challenging to explain at times when others accuse them of taking life too seriously.
Old Soul Sign #2 : Desire for Wisdom & Continued Learning
Kaisen is the Japanese term that translates to “change for the better” or improvement. I am a firm believer that life is a series of lessons and flows based on cause and effect. Old souls can spend large amounts of time ingesting positive self-help principles to incorporate into their life on a daily basis. However, spending an hour meditating or reading for example, means there is less amounts of time to devote to things like popular culture or sports. This makes things challenging when an old soul cannot comment on particular subjects or participate in certain trends simply because they just aren’t aware of them. They haven’t prioritised or spent time learning about them. In fact, they sometimes feel it is easier to talk with much older people who may just be out of the loop as they are.
Old Soul Sign #3: A time for the Fortress of Solitude
Reflection and quiet time is a recharge from the daily minutia of life. This reserved and private time is precious to old souls to contemplate and rummage through their thoughts and emotions and ponder on the deeper meaning of things. Because of this, there can be a feeling of detachment and isolation from others. Others may also get the personal impression that old souls distance themselves to be anti-social.
Old Soul Sign #4: A Love of the Classics
Like wearing cardigans? Like reading newspapers and the nostalgia of old pastimes? Can’t recite the lyrics to the latest music playing in a nightclub? Can’t keep up with the latest apps, tech and social media because it requires an exhausting amount of energy? Have a favourite chair, perhaps one that rocks? For some reason, old souls seem to have a yearning and nostalgia for a time period not their own. It just feels natural for them and they gravitate toward it. This can cause old souls to feel like the ultimate anachronism.
I mention all of these characteristics to give insight and an explanation for why old souls do the things they do. If you aren’t an old soul, we definitely could use your help in loosening up, appreciating some short term life adventures and generally figuring out what’s the happenings with the current generation. Is “whats the happenings” a term that the young whippersnappers use today?
Do you classify yourself as an Old Soul?