For the first time, the other day I watched Botched. Nope I never saw this show before & nothing else was on. Anyone who has watched this show knows some crazy shit goes on. Everyone is looking to change the way they look just to feel better about themselves, & on this show…had gotten Botched for it! As I watched the show & listened to these people justify “why” they had their surgeries done, I couldn’t help but wonder, what void did they think they were gonna fill but changing how they looked on the outside. There was this 20 something year old guy who didn’t want to look like everyone else, so he had fillers in his lips. So much that he is on the verge of loosing his lips all together…like really fall off! Yet, he wanted more, even against the doctor’s warning of the most likely outcome. At the end he insisted that he was going to another country to get it done. There was NO way he was gonna stop filling his lips! I mean the kid couldn’t even close his mouth right. WTF?
Last week I celebrated my 49th birthday. I have friends who are devastated that next year we’ll be 50! As if it’s time to crawl into the fetal position & wait for the grim reaper. It’s over, life is done, next year we’re 50. Unlike most of my friends, I’m excited about turning 50! It’s a new chapter, another milestone & I believe I’m still young enough to do anything I desire & most of all I now have the wisdom that goes along with growing older! My best friend & I are reading this wonderful book, “The Art of Turning 50”. It’s an awesome book for anyone approaching 50!
Which leads me to the idea of ageing. I mean we all are ageing. It’s so sad how society perceives ageing. Like it’s something we must stop! We must avoid growing older. It’s more acceptable to be seen with a frozen face that can’t even make an expression, skin so tight you look like your face is gonna snap & the one that scares me the most, looking like recycled plastic. Is this what we are suppose to look like as we get older? At what point is it enough? From what I’ve seen on that show, it’s NEVER enough! The truth is, it doesn’t matter how old you are, you can still look fabulous. Age IS just a number, how you feel inside is how old you really are. And for me, I feel like I’m still in my late 20’s, OK maybe early 30’s! Society & the media place immense pressure on us to stay young. We’re bombarded with images of youthful, flawless models & reality TV shows where contestants are given extreme surgical makeovers in the pursuit of youth. This fosters a disastrous image of growing older, which can make it difficult for us to be accepting of the changes that occur as the years trot on – especially for women.
So how can we shrug off these pressures placed upon us & embrace getting older instead of trying to hold on to our youth (& looking ridiculous)? I think when we “feel” young, we look & behave young. I’m not talking about immaturity! I’m talking about taking the risks we did when we were younger, being spontaneous, being adventurous, not using age as an excuse to give up or not even try something. So how can we stay, feel & act young without changing the way we look? How can we truly be happy in every area of our life & accept who we are & how we look right now? Well for me the answer is being mindful.
Mindfulness is paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally. This will then reflect your inner & outer world. You the begin to accept what is & find the beauty within it. Nothing to change!
Here are some healthy habits that are easy to do & will make a difference in being more mindful & feel young throughout the day.
- Express Gratitude. Truly being grateful for everything you have right now & being grateful in the situations that challenge us the most. That’s true gratitude. It’s easy to be grateful for what makes us happy when we feel happy, be grateful in the times you are angry or sad. There’s gratitude there too, I promise.
- Stretch first thing in the morning &/or throughout the day. Doing some stretching & breathing right after you wake up in the morning, will energize you & center you for the day ahead. Cats do this all day & they have 9 lives. Just sayin.
- Drink water all day. Drink lots of water during the day, starting with a glass at breakfast. Your body dehydrates overnight, so refilling the tank early will help you be more present & energetic throughout the day. I drink a gallon a day.
- Chew your food slowly. Enjoy the texture & the taste! You’ll be more satisfied with less food & more likely to notice other subtleties throughout the day.
- Listen to music. There is just something about music, it can shift your mood instantly! If you listen to music that moves you instead of mindless chatter from the flat screen, you will in turn make a conscious choice to listen to things that nourish you, rather than deplete your mind & heart.
- Journal. This is one of my favorite daily practices. Write in your journal to capture your reflections on your purpose & how you’re continuing to show up for that. Over time, you’ll create a record of your life that will provide valuable perspective!
- Ask yourself, “What’s working right now?” No matter how bad things seem, there is almost always something that’s going right. Mindfully build on that.
- Slow down! If you take a moment to stop & smell the roses, you’ll have more appreciation for all the beauty & abundance that life has to offer. nature speaks to us in many ways, take time to listen.
- Get outside! No matter what the weather’s like, learn to appreciate the now by enjoying the beauty of the outdoors, regardless of your scenery. Connect with the beauty nature has to offer. Notice what really is around you, you’ll be surprised at the things you’ve been missing!
- Take time each to day to reflect on why you’re here. Celebrate one thing you did today that served that very purpose.
- Tell someone how much you appreciate them. Be specific — it may be the first time anyone has ever shared that compliment with them. What a gift!
- Question your assumptions. Expand & challenge the way you look at people & situations. Take notice of how you perceive your world.
- Leave your phone in a drawer or out of sight for at least a couple of hours when you get home each evening. You may be surprised & delighted by what you notice!
- Get a good night’s sleep. Keep your phone, computer & tablet out of your bedroom! The light from them messes up your sleep pattern & you don’t need the electromagnetic field (radiation) while you sleep! After all, you need a good night’s rest for a great day tomorrow!
- Most of all...Keep Learning. Maintaining an active brain is shown to minimize the risk of developing any form of memory disease. Read, learn dancing or a language. No matter how old you are, never stop learning something new. This keeps your brain healthy & active, help new brain cells survive, & helps retain memory no matter what age we are.
There are so many reasons to view ageing as a positive element to our existence rather than it being a natural consequence of living. Keeping a positive attitude towards growing older & accepting the magnificent, unique being you truly are, enables you to maintain a sense of control & quality of life as we face another part of the life cycle. Good news is, it’s never too late to age well!
It’s not hard to be vibrant, healthy & energetic at any age if you’re living a healthy lifestyle. I feel like I am 30 & I expect to feel that way for the rest of my life! There is also a certain beauty in age.
What daily practices help keep you young?
Till next time…….