Getting Older: Have You Changed?

Getting-Older copy

Have you changed in getting older?

I have a strong suspicion if you haven’t you might be dead. It’s inevitable, really, that we will change as we get older. Many of us become more confident, more outgoing, more settled with who we are and who we would like to be.

Me? Apparently, I’ve become calm.

The wonderful Sonia Styling left a comment on my post last week saying that being around me at Problogger was a calm among the high energy and noise.


I have never thought of myself as calm before. I’m really chuffed by it! It actually means a whole lot more to me than she would ever realise. It means I’ve finally done it – I’ve finally managed to let go of who I was.

Growing up I was the loud kid. I was the one everybody knew by name 5 minutes after I entered a room or started a class. When I was in my first term at high school, people were walking up to my brother telling him they were amazed he was related to me.

I was the stubborn kid. My name was said with a slur and an inflection that meant it was an insult. My extended family used my name as a synonym for tantrum which, coincidentally, was also the nickname my brother bestowed upon me and quickly caught on.

I was the obnoxious kid. The one who refused to follow rules, who would enrol in after-school programs and only turn up when they felt like it. Who talked back to teachers, who made up stories, who told lies.

I was never the calm one.

17 years old, lying on a trampoline one New Years Eve with a guy I had met at the party that night. He turned to me and he said “I never would have thought the person who walked into that party so confident, loud and outgoing, would be the person lying on a trampoline with me at midnight talking like this. You’re two different people.”

For a long time I was.

30 years old and I’m finally one.

Happily, that one is a calm and relaxed person to be around. Sometimes.

Have you changed in getting older? Do you think you have calmed down? 

  • Gary

    Yep, wait another 20 years. I hit 50 this year and reflected on how much my life has changed and how much my personality has become less arrogant and less obnoxious. I’ve become more content and on balance happy.

    • Tamsin Howse

      I’m looking forward to it!

  • Monique Fischle

    I have absolutely calmed down. As a teenager I was loud and obnoxious and tried too hard to monopolise people’s attention. This was one of the ways my grief manifested. I’m now far more reserved and I prefer it this way.

    • Tamsin Howse

      Change the word grief to insecurity and you’ve just described me!

  • NormalNess

    This is fascinating, because I don’t really think I have
    changed much since high school. But I think that was a case that I matured earlier as a teenager because of a few (long story) factors. Basically, I thought teenagers were annoying when I was one. I have been working on myself quietly for a few years and spent this last weekend bouncing back and forth between thinking “Yeah, I’m excellent in where I am and how I deal with life” and “Everything is crap”. Thought the last one may have been prompted by regretful thoughts about juggling postgrad and work and blogs and writing.

    • Tamsin Howse

      I matured quickly too, but I think the biggest contributing factor to my change has been confidence. I always demonstrated insecurity through being loud and outgoing.
      Things will work out for you, I’m sure of it

  • John James

    Yep – much calmer, more focused, and more confident – and as I approach 50, I have a real sense of direction and purpose! :)

    I’ve always thought you were calm, by the way… 😉

    • Tamsin Howse

      Isn’t it funny that we see ourselves so differently to the way others see us? I’ve never thought of myself as calm!

  • Sonia from Sonia Styling

    Isn’t it funny how a seemingly simple compliment from me could mean so much to you? There’s always a backstory.
    I’m definitely a different person to who I was at 20 – I’ve calmed a little and I’m much more comfortable in my own skin – and I look forward to seeing how I’ve changed at 40, 50, 60… x

    • Tamsin Howse

      Just goes to show how important our words are!

      I look forward to getting older too. I’m hoping one day to no longer care what others think of me.

  • Bek

    I think I’ve become more assertive and more comfortable having boundaries as I’ve gotten older. I also care a little less what people think of me. I was really shy/awkward/reserved as a kid, and I’ve become more outgoing as I’ve matured. I think some of that was just getting out of my high school environment though.

    • Tamsin Howse

      Getting out into the wide world makes a difference. I suspect having children does too – as you have to place and enforce boundaries on them you become better at enforcing your own.

  • thelifeofclare

    Infinitely! I’m a completely different person. Like you, I was once the outgoing, loud, over the top person. Now, I’m content staying at home, being alone. My dreams, passions seem to be the same but more refined.

    I love the Sonia’s passing comment had such an effect. We mustn’t forget the power of our words!

    • Tamsin Howse

      It’s so important for us to remember! Particularly if we say something unkind (which, obviously, Sonia did not).

      Like you, I love staying home! I still don’t hugely like being alone unless I have something to do. I prefer to be at home with someone. I can never decide if my dreams have or haven’t changed. They changed from pursuing fame to pursuing security, a good job and being a mother a long time ago – but if I’m honest, I still have the drive to pursue fame buried deep down 😉

  • Gina Soldano-Herrle

    I’ve definitely changed in getting older. I wouldn’t say that I’ve exactly calmed down. But, I’ve finally learned to let things go. I used to waste a lot of energy by being angry at people who’d hurt me and I held grudges. I’m not saying I’m ready to be BFFs with any of those people. But, I don’t dwell on it anymore. I’ve learned to focus more on the here and now.

    • Tamsin Howse

      I hear you!! When I worked my first full time job I was still working nights at a video store and I used to sit with one of my closest friends every night after we closed the store and we would complain about life, the universe and everything. I don’t regret doing that as I loved her dearly and still fondly remember those nights in the cold out the front of the shop (we once declared I was Jay and she was SB) but I wouldn’t have the energy to be that mad at the world anymore.

      The difference between being 19 and being 30 I guess!

      • Gina Soldano-Herrle

        Definitely! I remember doing the exact same thing except that it was at a chili restaurant. Haha!

        • Tamsin Howse

          So were you Jay or Silent Bob? 😉

          • Gina Soldano-Herrle

            According to my friends I’m more Jay. Haha

  • Jess

    It’s interesting you view calm as the opposite of loud, to me calm is the opposite of anxious, it doesn’t have to mean quiet. I think you can absolutely be calm and loud at the same time, I know plenty of people that fit that category.

    • Tamsin Howse

      Probably that’s interlinked in my mind as for me loud usually does mean anxious. But then again, she did say “calm amongst the noise”

  • melinka

    Well, damn. I think I’m just getting crankier. Maybe I should work on that 😛

    • Tamsin Howse

      I don’t know, there seems to be a point in time where we’re old enough to get away with being cranky as hell, you could always aim for that!
      I’d really like to become random sentence woman. “I’ve got a favourite saucepan!”