Aging can seem like a scary prospect, but scientists have found a number of traits and skills don’t peak until people hit their 50th birthday.
It’s in the back nine of life, for instance, that people have the best body images and can best pick up on others’ emotions.
In case you’re worried the prime of your life is rushing past you, here is some evidence the best is still yet to come.
Arithmetic skill peaks around age 50.
A 2015 study found that among nearly 49,000 people, those who performed best on measures of mathematical ability were around 50 years old.
Other tests related to pattern recognition and memory showed younger subjects performing better, but for simple arithmetic it paid to be older.
You can best understand people’s emotions in your 50s.
The same study, looking to understand people’s intuition of others, asked 10,000 people to view pictures cropped tightly around a person’s eyes.
The researchers found a long plateau around people in their 50s when the ability to correctly identify emotions based only on the eyes was strongest.
Wisdom peaks after age 60.
People do seem to get wiser as they get older.
According to a 2010 study, the people who performed best at analyzing a given conflict, seeing different points of view, gauging uncertainties, and envisioning solutions, were people who were at least 60 years old.