15 Ways Life Was Better 50 Years Ago

It’s no secret that technology has made most of our lives much easier. From ordering food to a fast Google search, technology has made the world more convenient.

But there are some aspects of our lives that haven’t benefited from technology. In fact, some things were better 50 years ago and are more complicated, more expensive, and more dangerous to do now.

Keep reading to find out how life was better five decades ago.

Meeting people organically was much easier

Today, people rely on their phones to communicate. In fact, some studies find that millennials’ reliance on their phones makes them less social in life.

As a result, meeting someone organically and out in public can be far more difficult. But this was practically the only way to meet someone 50 years ago.

It was easier to meet your significant other

With today’s popularity of dating apps, our dating options seem virtually limitless.

Many aren’t settling down for a while because they are looking for the absolute best thing – and they feel they can find it easily at their fingertips.

While 50 years ago, people’s dating pools were limited to their immediate circles like their schools and workplaces, today we might have a dating paradox of choice.

Remaining anonymous and staying off the grid was possible 50 years ago

Without any GPS or tracking systems, it was possible to completely disappear. But, now it’s near impossible to completely vanish with social media, geotags, and GPS.

Additionally, financial transactions have also gone largely digital in recent years, making it even more difficult to delete your digital footprint.

Work life used to be more personal and less reliant on technology

Today, many tasks in an office depend on some form of technology whether you’re making copies, typing your to-do list, sending an email, or scanning a spreadsheet.

But some are so reliant on it they even send emails to colleagues sitting a few feet away instead of communicating in person. Fifty years ago, communicating in the office was much more personal.

It was easier to focus before the advent of technology

It’s getting harder and harder to focus on a task – especially in the workplace – because of the importance of technology and social media in our lives.

In fact, a study found that in 2004, people on average were distracted every three minutes. By 2014, their attention span dropped to 59.5 seconds. Our ability to focus on a task has dramatically decreased over time.

Sleeping habits were better five decades ago

Many of us today scroll through social media in bed right before falling asleep, but studies show that this inhibits the production of melatonin, a hormone vital for sleeping.

While doctors advise turning off electronics 30 minutes before bedtime, many don’t and risk a bad night’s sleep. Fifty years ago this was not an issue.

People were healthier both mentally and emotionally before the rise of technology

Studies show that people, especially young people, experience stress, anxiety, and even depression from social media and phone usage.

According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in 10 Americans suffers from some form of depression.

Psychology Today thinks this is, in part, because we are now able to compare ourselves to everyone on the internet who appears to be living a better life.

This was not the case 50 years ago, when there were far less platforms on which to engage with others’ representations of themselves.

Politics has always been a complicated, heated subject but today its outcomes can be more manipulated

Facebook recently admitted to finding 3,300 ads that were run by Russia during the 2016 election and aimed at swaying sowing discord.

They also found 470 inauthentic Facebook pages that ran during campaign season and featured these very ads.

Additionally, fake news was shared on social media sites, attempting to manipulate voters’ opinions. This is an issue born of the age of social media.

Traveling by plane was faster and simpler

Fifty years ago, the TSA wasn’t created and airport security was much more lax, so getting through security was a breeze.

In fact, you were able to take a lot more items on planes, like blades, baseball bats, and even scissors. Traveling with liquids was also allowed.

Fifty years ago, it was easier to see a movie in theaters

Although we seem to have unlimited access to movies with Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon, it’s actually more difficult to see a movie in theaters today.

Fifty years ago, movies were significantly cheaper, costing about $1.42 in 1969. Today buying a ticket at the movies can cost as much as $20.

And with movies coming either straight or very soon after their release to our personal devices, some predict that movie theaters are meeting their slow demise.

It was easier to shop at smaller, locally-owned stores

Today, big stores like Walmart, Target, and Tj Maxx are destroying smaller, locally owned stores. Fifty years ago, these smaller stores were much easier to access.

It was easier to feed a family on one parent’s salary

It’s nearly impossible to afford a family if only one parent is working, but that hasn’t always been the case.

In the 1960s, 70% of fathers were the only source of income, according to the Pew Research Center. Today, more than 60% of families have dual income, says Pew.

Fifty years ago, it was easier to buy a house

As housing prices have increased over the decades, it has become increasingly more difficult to buy a home.

According to the US Census Bureau, a median home cost $11,900 in 1960, while the household median income was $4,970 (or nearly half the cost of a home).

In 2010, the median home cost $221,800, while the median income was $49,445 (or a bit more than a fourth the cost of a home).

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5 Comments

  1. Manny says

    Would love to go back to the 1950s..n..60s
    Were people were people, honest. Happy,
    Forgiven,and respect other people’s property
    Kids watching children programs. Rolling
    Skateing ,make up games,..staying out side until
    Mom / dad called to eat..it goes on .n..on.
    THOSE WERE THE GREAT DAYS!!!

  2. JAUME ANGLADA CARBO says

    Muy buenas fotografĂ­as para los que nos gusta la fotografĂ­a muchas gracias

  3. Robert says

    Now when you lived through the era that this is talking about when more persons had more mental issues than they do today, in fact the term “crazy house” which were mental institutions run by the state and privately were full of those persons. The streets are now full of those same persons who can not or will not get the help they need.
    Now some live today in a utopia in their mind of what the 1950’s and 1960’s were like but the true history paints a different picture than they post. Just look at crime statistics from that era, unwanted pregnancies, run away children and crime within the family house hold, also look at how anyone except whites were treated at any level in life.
    I lived through the 1940’s up until today and much prefer today.

  4. Arlene says

    Typically, there were no people of color apparently in the 1950’s U.S.A. I never went to school with a handicapped person, I never was allowed to take shop because only boys were allowed, I never could report the sexual abuse I lived through because those things were swept under the table, and my husband legally beat me because “he loved me”. Today is wonderful: more information and informed decisions, friends worldwide, shopping on-line, ordering groceries for pick up, free long-distance calls, veterans can run and walk today after being injured. And a thousand other things that make today the best time to be alive in human history. Nah, you can keep your false memories of the “good old days”.

  5. Wolverinefan says

    Yes, I remember all the fun memories of the activities I did in the city of Detroit, where I was born and grew up. I am too fearful of attempting most of those same activities today because of the predominant crime which is way worse than it was when I was growing up there. But, I remember a few things I wish wee still true, like when I got my first car, gas was only 23 cents a gallon and I could go to a double feature movie show at a Saturday afternoon matinee price of 25 cents.

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