Advice from Betty White on Not Retiring, Aging Well, and Living a Happy Life

Betty White died this year just shy of her 100th birthday. While she was associated with retirement since her days on “Golden Girls” which debuted in 1985 – 37 years ago, White never actually retired herself. She worked for over 80 years in film and television, starting in 1939 when she graduated from high school through her final year. One of her final performances was voicing Bitey White in Toy Story 4 and the short Forky Asks a Question. She was also active in various animal organizations.

It seems fitting to publish her top 10 tips for living a long and happy life, from her David Letterman appearance in 2011 as well as a few other pieces of inspired advice.

Top 10 Betty White Tips for a Long and Happy Life


10. Get at least 8 hours of beauty sleep, 9 if you’re ugly (said with a knowing nod)

9. Exercise. Or don’t. What the hell do I care? ( announced with a shoulder shrug)

8. Never apologize – it shows weakness

7. The best way to earn a quick buck is a slip and fall lawsuit

6. Avoid tweeting any photos of your private parts

5. Schedule a nightly appointment with Dr. Johnnie Walker (delivered with a bit of double eyebrow raised glee)

4. Take some wheatgrass, soy paste and carob, toss in the garbage and cook yourself a big-ass piece of pork

3. Try not to die (stated earnestly)

2. Never dwell on paste mistakes, especially you, LeBron (ending with a smirk)

1. Don’t waste your tie watching this crap

Other Worthwhile Advice from Betty White on Retirement, Aging, and Living a Good Life

The characters Betty White played in film and on television had some great zingers. But, the woman herself amassed a lengendary list of quips that reveal a lot about what kept her vital for nearly 100 years.

Here are some of her best quotes on retirement, aging, and living a good life:

“Mind your own business, take care of your affairs, and don’t worry about other people so much.”

“So you may not be as fast on your feet, and the image in your mirror may be a little disappointing, but if you are still functioning and not in pain, gratitude should be the name of the game.”

“I may be a senior, but so what? I’m still hot.”

“Laughter keeps everyone feeling wonderful.”

“Best thing about being in your 90s is you’re spoiled rotten. Everybody spoils you like mad and they treat you with such respect because you’re old. Little do they know, you haven’t changed. You haven’t changed [in the brain]. You’re just 90 every place else.”

“I’m a teenager trapped in an old body.”

“Don’t try to be young. Just open your mind. Stay interested in stuff. There are so many things I won’t live long enough to find out about, but I’m still curious about them. You know people who are already saying, ‘I’m going to be 30 – oh what am I going to do?’ Well, use that decade. Use them all!”

“Dreading age is a waste of a lovely life. ‘Oh… I’m 30, oh, I’m 40, oh, 50.’ Make the most of it.”

“I have a two-story house and a bad memory, so I’m up and down those stairs all the time. That’s my exercise.”

“Retirement is not in my vocabulary. They aren’t going to get rid of me that way.”

“I try to keep current in what’s going on in the world. I do mental exercises. I don’t have any trouble memorizing lines because of the crossword puzzles I do every day to keep my mind a little limber. I don’t sit and vegetate.”

“Why retire from something if you’re loving it so much and enjoying it so much, and you’re blessed with another group of people to work with like the gang on ‘Hot in Cleveland?’ Why would I think of retiring? What would I do with myself?”

“There is a funny side to aging, if one has a warped sense of humor.”

“I have no idea what color [my hair] really is, and I never intend to find out.”

Notes on Betty White and Financial Planning

Betty White died with an estimated net worth of $75 million. So, she was clearly not one of those celebrities who didn’t know how to manage money.

She leaves behind three stepchildren from her marriage to Allen Ludden — Sarah, Martha, and David Ludden. It may be that they will get a portion of her estate. However, they may have been taken care of by Ludden. It is almost sure that White has left a large sum to one of the many animal charities she supported in life.

She was passionate about animals. She was a trustee at the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association, the Morris Animal Foundation and Actors and Others for Animals, and was a longtime supporter of The Marine Mammal Center, an ocean conservation nonprofit.

She encouraged fans to donate to trustworthy animal charities. And, there is a social media movement, the Betty White Challenge, suggesting that people send $5 to an animal shelter on Jan. 17, when White would have turned 100.

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