Strange as it may seem, since turning sixty I actually feel more positive about myself, than when I turned thirty. I have managed to retain the same vitality and energy that I had in my thirties but without the uncertainty of who I really am and where I am going in my life.
I used to stress a lot about what the future held, whether I could cope with what life threw at me. I would feel anxious that I wasn't good enough or whether I could handle new challenges. I often lacked confidence to articulate what I was thinking within my family life, relationships and at work. I new my weaknesses but didn't know how to overcome them and turn them around.
Now my attitude, approach and prospects are completely different. Certainly over time, through life's experiences of successes, failures, grief and sorrows, ups and downs there is bound to be an influence on some principles of managing one's life and personal feelings towards self. The point is how does this have a positive effect on life after sixty?
Whatever our age, its never too late to follow our dreams!
Some might think that youth has vanished in their sixties and as a consequence feel lost in a downhill spiral of growing old, showing little value for themselves and what they have achieved between thirty and sixty.
Most of us react to the ageing process in two different ways. One is to see it as a negative progression, related to decline and loss. The other is to see it as just a number that is disguised through the positive energy of our true self.
Somehow society has managed to create a vacuum where age seems to have mislaid its association with wisdom and experience. It has become something to fear or feel embarrassed about. We tend to become defensive about our age and this leads to loss of confidence and self-esteem.
Whatever our age, its never too late to follow our dreams! This is because the body ages but the brain doesn’t. We have been conditioned to believe that the brain grows old too, so its not really a matter of our brains capacity as much as the self-imposed limiting beliefs that keep us stuck in this mindset.
Studies have shown that a positive attitude toward ageing has an even greater impact on survival. Our brain is either growing or shrinking and as with muscles, exercise keeps the brain healthy and growing. Actually our mind is designed to grow, adapt and improve with age.
"Our brain thrives on stimulation"
For some age is about slipping into the same ‘old’ routine of doing things that we’ve always done in a certain way, living a life on autopilot, becoming ‘set in our ways’, limited and rigid.
But this doesn’t have to be! We can change this around. Learning new things improves the memory in fact the brain thrives on stimulation, which helps to create a healthier, sharper mind.
Mindfulness teaches us how thoughts, like words carry energy of their own and just as our mood can be affected by positive words of kindness and praise, so too the influence of unkind or critical thoughts about ourselves can have a negative impact on our emotions.
As we age it is vital for us to use our thoughts, imaginings and words wisely. When we think ‘old’ and speak ‘old’, we will act ‘old’ and feel ‘old’. But when we create positive thoughts and expectations we generate a good energy around us, which in time not only make us feel happier and less anxious but also guide's us towards a more positive future.
Ageing with grace, retaining our youth through the source of our spirit energy, gives us the possibility to reach our full potential. Developing our intuition, believing in ourselves, feeling confident to communicate our thoughts, expressing what we feel from within and reaching for the stars are all values that we can cherish from thirty to ninety and beyond, since age is just a number!
I do feel more capable and confident in my sixties, learning new things and even take risks. I worry less about the past and the future. My mindset is all about today, since I can't change the past or alter the future. As a result I feel far more positive about what I can affect 'Now.'
Annie runs Mindfulness Meditation and Yoga courses from her studio in East Molesey, Surrey.
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