The Power of Nostalgia
But while a 20–something might enjoy remembering a favourite toy, what do the over 50s miss most from their younger years? Holidays to great British seaside towns or having freedom without as much danger, perhaps?
Is nostalgia a bad thing?
Not at all! Thinking about the past used to be discouraged — but now it’s actually recognised as a positive aspect to people’s lives. Reminiscing about happy memories is a great way to lift your mood, and reviewing how events unfolded can be a useful tool when it comes to planning your future. Recalling good times with family and friends can also be a good way to overcome feelings of loneliness and isolation, which is an increasing problem in communities today. Looking back can also fuel your imagination and creativity — putting techniques and skills from the past to use, reviving crafts that might otherwise die out, like knitting, making toys out of wood and bread making.
We may mostly be nostalgic about events, but nostalgia can also help revive favourite foods. According to the Office of National Statistics’ annual ‘basket’, that they put together as a measure of inflation, we are all looking to the past for inspiration. The iconic 1970’s dish, quiche, for example, is now a regular addition to the nation’s shopping list. It may not be quite the same as the packets of dried mashed potato from 30 years ago, but pre–prepared mash is also now back on the menu for time–starved shoppers. The ONS basket also highlights foods that have gone out of favour — including old favourites like pork pie, peaches and pasties!