Happy Galentine’s Day, Lovelies!
It’s been a while, I know, but I’ve been making a valiant effort to dip my toe back into my creativity pool. I’m working on my thirteenth novel (#LoveInReverse) and recently had a story published in a new sweet romance anthology. Today, I’m launching a topical blog series called My Five (#MyFiveList) – a monthly listicle showing how I do what I do in five not-at-all-expert steps.
Why five? According to numerology, five represents two hallmarks of my soul: energy and independence. A true-to-the-core extrovert (and proud of it), I did and do the self-work to bring the best version of my flawed but fabulous self to the forefront every day (even if that ‘best version’ is stuck to her recliner watching Sex and the City reruns). Energy is very important to me and I hope to bring my compassion and light to these monthly chronicles to create a healthy dialogue among us.
Since Friday is my 41st birthday (WOOT! I accept Amazon gifts!), this introductory list will cover my top five tips for growing older. I’m not talking in just terms of face and body (although Truth Serum and supportive undergarments are absolutely doing their part); I’m speaking chiefly to your mind, heart, and soul. So let’s get to it…
Step One: Don’t Age; Grow Older
I know – I’m starting this initial list off with something quite challenging. At least it was for me when I first read the above quote in one of my favorite books, Dr. Christiane Northrup’s Goddesses Never Age. The author goes in on the term ‘aging’ and changed my outlook on growing older in one quote: “Age is just a number, and agelessness means not buying into the idea that a number determines everything from your state of health to your attractiveness to your value.”
The concept of growing older has yet to be a deterrent for me. When I consider the alternative (death), getting a year older every 365 days seems like the better solution. My body, mind, and spirit are growing older, not aging. To age is to decline – and this is an option. It’s just not the option for me and, I assume if you tuned into this post, it’s not your first choice, either. So the first step to changing your mindset around getting older is to change your vernacular. Aging is for cheese, bourbon, and wine. Grow older instead, lovelies (and then go enjoy some cheese, bourbon, and/or wine!).
Step Two: Move Your Body
The first thing to go isn’t the body; it’s the mind. Ever go in the kitchen and forget why the hell you came in there in the first place? This is by no means a reason to call your local neurologist, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve become convinced that physical activity three times a week can ward off memory lapses and keep you sharp, among many additional health benefits for my fellow 40+ peeps. If you already have a good exercise regimen going, that makes me happy and I hope you keep at it. Not a fan of the sweat sessions or have limited mobility? No worries as there are plenty of ways to move your body without too much exertion: yoga, Pilates, or just turn on your favorite tunes and dance. The main objective is to move yourself into a joyful state so that your family and friends have you around for more birthdays to come.
Step Three: Laugh Your Ass Off
When people typically see me, they see a smile. Not because I’m necessarily ecstatic that particular day but because I find humor in many of life’s circumstances. Humor keeps me young at heart and in mind, so I can only imagine what a chuckle or two a day is doing for my body. Call a funny friend who’s guaranteed to give you the giggles. Tune into a funny female-centric podcast like Yas Kween or Guys We Fucked (my two personal comedic faves). Or, for the fastest funniest results, just take a look around at life as you know it right in front of you. When you pause and stop taking things too seriously, the laugh riot begins.
Step Four: Disconnect & Reconnect
I’m not typically one for New Year’s resolutions, but I’m a big fan of intention setting. One intention that I set for this year was to have more face-to-face interactions with my favorite people. So log off from the socials, shut down your laptop (after you finish reading this, of course), and text that friend who you’ve seen more in the DMs than in real life. I know you’re busy and your friend is probably busy as well, but make the time to see one another – even if it’s a walk to your work BFF’s office or pod for a quick chat. It’s refreshing to have a live conversation with someone who loves and enjoys your company both off and online. I promise you’ll feel better – and there’s nothing like the joy of friendship to keep you growing.
Step Five: #StayBoundaried
Here’s the thing: you can do all the exercising and laughing and reconnecting…and it can all be blown to bits when you engage adverse energy. Sure, discourse and conflict arise among humans. We err and we judge. We fight with our BFF or flip the bird during a traffic jam. However, it is crucial that, as you grow older, you become aware of the type of energy you will not engage under any circumstances. There are people in the world whose only pleasure in life is to disagree with others. Avoid them. Likewise, create compassionate boundaries with people you love but must love from afar. These are not easy tasks but I have faith in you, dear reader. You CAN say the word ‘No’ without explanation (ask my 8-year-old daughter). You CAN exit from dialogue that does not serve you. You CAN give yourself the gift of boundaries. They keep your soul aligned, your heart open, and your mind free (so just imagine what they do for the body!).
Any tips for growing older that you’d like to share? Hit the comments below – I’m always looking for advice to add to my (not) aging arsenal!