Betty White's 100th birthday: 10 quotes on how the Golden Girl approached life

The legendary actress died a few weeks shy of her milestone birthday - but her wit and wisdom live on

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On December 31, celebrated comedic actress Betty White died, less than three weeks from what would have been her 100th birthday on January 17.

The beloved Golden Girls and The Mary Tyler Moore Show actress died at her Los Angeles home as a result of a December 25 cerebrovascular accident, the medical term for a stroke, she suffered six days prior, according to the LA County death certificate.

It was a big blow for the entertainment industry at large, and a number of celebrated personalities – from Ryan Reynolds to US President Joe Biden – came forward to pay tribute to White after her death.

White will always be remembered for her comedic roles, her acting chops, her love for animals and for being well ahead of her times – and all that is reflected in her quips from over the years.

With today being what should have been the star’s centenary, we take a look at some of her most famous quotes. Words that we can all live by, even for the next 100 years.

1. On ageing gracefully

“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!”

2. On work and retirement

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

3. On keeping it light

“It's your outlook on life that counts. If you take yourself lightly and don't take yourself too seriously, pretty soon you can find the humour in our everyday lives. And sometimes it can be a lifesaver.”

4. On social media

“I didn't know what Facebook was, and now that I do know what it is, I have to say, it sounds like a huge waste of time.”

5. On staying in touch with friends

“People have told me ‘Betty, Facebook is a great way to keep in touch with old friends.’ At my age, if I wanted to keep in touch with old friends, I’d need a Ouija board."

6. On animals

"Animals don’t lie. Animals don’t criticise. If animals have moody days, they handle them better than humans do."

7. On having a sense of humour

“If one has no sense of humour, one is in trouble.”

8. On being kind

“Kindness and consideration of somebody besides yourself keeps you feeling young.”

9. On how to approach life

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

10. On being in her nineties

“Best thing about being in your nineties 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 everyplace else.”

See how Betty White's style evolved over the decades:

Updated: January 17, 2022, 9:07 AM