A study of 2,000 people has revealed that 53% of adults think middle age begins later than in previous generations, with most Brits considering middle age starts at the age of 47.
Men believe they reach middle age at 48, which is three years later than women, who feel they hit the milestone at 45.
The research, conducted by OnePoll, uncovered that feeling stiff all over, thinking that doctors, teachers and policemen look really young, and choosing clothes and shoes for comfort rather than style, were some of the biggest indicators that middle age is looming.
Dr Meg Arroll, a chartered psychologist working with Healthspan, which commissioned the research, said: “The findings in this survey show a very positive picture all round, despite some of the negative associations with ageing, individuals’ attitudes towards getting older were generally quite optimistic.
“For example, those who had reached middle age reported it wasn’t actually as bad as they had expected or feared.
“Furthermore, many in the survey said that they believe ‘middle age’ is a life stage reflecting people who are older, and that they are far too young to be using the term to describe themselves.
“Taken as a whole, this research supports the notion that and that age, and specifically middle age, is a state of mind rather than a number.”
Other signs middle age has reached you include losing your hair and groaning when you bend down. However, 30% of those in the middle age category don’t think they fit the stereotype, with almost half of those asked saying they feel younger than their age.
If you’re wondering whether you’ve reached middle age, here are the top twenty signs that could indicate you are moving towards an older age bracket:
- Feeling stiff
- ‘Middle age’ middle/ belly
- Groaning when you bend down
- Saying ‘it wasn’t like that when I was young’
- Choosing clothes and shoes for comfort rather than style
- Can’t shift weight
- You don’t know any songs in the top 10
- Finding you have no idea what ‘young people’ are talking about
- Thinking policemen/teachers/doctors look young
- Skin blemishes and lines
- Getting hairier – ears, eyebrows, nose, face.
- Hating noisy pubs
- Old hands
- Losing hair
- Forgetting people’s names
- When you start complaining more
- Falling asleep in front of the TV every night
- Needing an afternoon nap
- Complaining about the rubbish on television these days