Younger Next Year at Any Age

by Cathy on November 27, 2011 · 0 comments

in Ideas,Resources

What advice would you give to your 20 or 30 year-old self knowing what you know now? One thing I would do is discuss the principles in the book Younger Next Year for Women with my younger self. Admittedly, this book appeals to me because I’ve joined the ranks of the Menopause Mommas, but it also contains great nuggets of wisdom that can equip any women to turn back the clock by making the most out of her life.

The book’s authors — one a doctor and the other a vital 80-year-old who could pass for 50 — write that a person’s approach to life can mean either a step forward to vitality or a step backward to decay. The book’s life-stretching principles can be summed up in three words: exercise, connect and engage.

Exercise: Commit to working out six times a week, no excuses. Regular cardio exercise and weight training helps treat a variety of health issues, including depression, insomnia and weight-related illnesses. The chemistry of exercise is the chemistry of alertness, optimism, and an increased willingness to connect with others and with life.

Photo courtesy of FastCompany.com, from an article on the connection between exercise and creativity

 

Connect: We are wired for regular contact with other people If you make this your job to build new bridges make new friends and build new communities, you can stay connected virtually forever. You  can do this at any age but it is far easier if you start early. Studies confirm that isolation hurts us and connection heals us. Social connections are a more powerful factor in health than anything else, including nutrition and exercise.

Engage: Continually explore new interests and seek to learn something new every single day. Look for ways to serve others and make a positive difference in the world. Always keep working and work on a variety of projects all the time. Seek to achieve, excel and accomplish whatever is of interest to you.

Photo courtesy of ImprovePhotography.com

Jessica, a woman whose story is shared in the book, provides a perfect example of this life approach. Though she was widowed for the last 40 years of her life and faced numerous challenges, she lived a  vital life and was fully immersed until her last day on earth. The reasons:

  • Jessica did stuff — she worked as an editor, ran her own shop, hosted a local TV show, wrote a cookbook … she hosted dinner parties all the time, though she wasn’t a good cook,
  • She worked hard at nurturing and growing a circle of friends. She would meet new people all the time and invite them to dinner parties. One of the great risks in life is that you run out of friends, Jessica did not let that happen.
  • She worked hard at keeping herself in great physical shape. ‘Nuff said.
  • She had a great attitude, great courage, and a great sense of humor.
  • She was always exploring and learning, game for anything.

So, exercise hard and you will grow physically younger; care about other people and you will grow happier; build a life that has meaning and you will grow richer.

 

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