How many times do you look in the mirror and see one more thing that has fallen, drooped, or bulged just a little bit more than it did the last time you looked?
The further we get into the aging process, the faster it seems to go. Now I know that I'm only 26 years old (27 in 3 months), but I have noticed over the past few years that I, am indeed, aging... just like the rest of the world. What, I am not immortal!?
Confronted with my mortality and realizing that I am in fact going to die one day has not been the easiest thing to wrap my head around. Since my husband is somewhat older than me and has been a witness of how ones life can be taken so fast with losing his first wife to cancer, he was able to understand and console me in what I was going through.
When I hit my mid twenties, age started to become very real to me and even though I had gotten older every year, I didn't think about aging up until that point. Shortly after my 25th birthday I began getting Botox injections in attempt to ward off the signs of age even though I didn't have any fine lines or wrinkles yet.
Thousands of dollars spent later and a husband who's not a fan of the frozen look, I decided to embark on a journey that would help me cope with getting older using natural and healing methods both physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
You can't stop yourself from getting older and you can't help that over time, you will get fine lines and wrinkles. However, you can counter the effects of age and diminish the appearance of wrinkles through practical strategies, a shift in your thinking, and a connectedness with your soul and Spirit.
On a Physical Level
- Eat whole, unprocessed foods that have no chemicals, preservatives, hormones, pesticides/herbicides and organic/local whenever possible: What we eat is truly one of the biggest factors in maintaining all aspects of our health on a physical level. Our bodies decay when they are undernourished, they get sick and they age at a faster rate when we don't pay attention to the food we eat.
- Drink more water: Our bodies are largely made up of water and we need water to function properly. Our bodies depend on clean water for survival and for optimal health. Water also hydrates us from the outside in and one of the biggest ways to ward off wrinkles is to stay hydrated.
- Eat more healthy fats: Many of our bodies tissue is lipid based (aka fat based). We need adequate amounts of fat to help aid the bodies metabolism, its ability to transport hormones, the ability to absorb many nutrients, and to support cell signalling. Again, fats keep our bodies running smoothly and contribute to healthier and stronger hair, nails, skin, etc..Healthy fats include foods like nuts, avocados, organic full fat dairy, coconut oil, olive oil, wild fish and game, etc...
- Get adequate amounts of sleep and for wrinkle prevention, try sleeping on your back: Our bodies repair when we sleep. If our sleep is interrupted or we aren't getting enough, the body never fully repairs and thus, we age faster. Sleeping on your back ensures you aren't causing sleep lines to be etched into the skin.
- Exercise in a way that you enjoy: Don't expect to reap all the wonderful benefits of exercise if you go into it thinking you are obligated to kill yourself when you workout. Stress is stress, if we are putting our bodies under stress with a workout (which is good stress) but pairing it with negativity towards our body and using exercise as punishment for looking/eating a certain way, we will not get the most out of what we are doing. Embrace movement instead of insisting the absolute need to put your body through the paces. Exercise in a way that brings enjoyment.
- Less sun and more moisture: Hydrating your skin both inside and out is pertinent to youthful looking skin. Dry skin is known to wrinkle faster than oily skin so making sure you have high quality, natural face and skin products that have ingredients like olive oil, coconut oil, joba joba oil, and shea butter included will do magical things for your skin. Staying out of the sun will noticeably reduce the look of fine lines and wrinkles, and more importantly reduce the risk of skin cancer. For you sun babies out there, beware!
On an Emotional Level
- Stress less: Dwelling and obsessing over the aging process won't do you any favours. The more stress we have in our lives, the faster we age. The body breaks down rapidly when we are in a state of prolonged stress by secreting nutrients, increasing stress hormone production, decreasing digestion and assimilation, and assisting in a plethora of many other negative reactions. When we stress about age, we age faster.
- You are what you think and what you say: Belief is one of the strongest forces in the world. When we believe something to our core, it will change the way we live whether it's for good or bad. People commit suicide because they believe they have no reason to live and people also go on to become world changers because they believe they have something great to offer the world. Whatever you set your belief and self talk to, you shall have it. Make a point to affirm yourself and your body everyday to see the changes you want to see.
On a Spirit/Soul Level
- Love more, age slower: The more self love we can give to ourselves everyday, the greater chance our bodies have to be in a place of relaxation. When we love, we are inherently relaxed and when we relax, the body functions at its highest potential. Hating on your body will only make you look and feel worse.
- Having faith slows the look of aging: Having faith, whether that be in a higher power or yourself, will cause you to let go of fear and anxiety. Fear is the opposite of faith and will elicit the stress response. We cannot be in a place of faith and be stressed at the same time, it just doesn't work. When we are in a stress response (aka fear), our bodies flip into overtime and start to physically breakdown if the stress sticks around for too long.
We are all going to get older and eventually move on to the next phase of life. We are born, we grow old, and we pass on. What you do and how you treat your mind, body and spirit in between is up to you.
You can choose to eat foods that either build the body up, or tear it down quicker. You can choose to think positively and say kind words to yourself, or you can beat yourself down with negative thoughts and words and make yourself appear worse and worse every time you look in the mirror. You can live in fear or you can live in faith, the choice is always up to you.
Aging is only going to be detrimental to your body if you let it and if you don't take care of yourself on each of the three levels. The sexiest way to age is when we do it gracefully and when we take care of ourselves. No amount of Botox or surgery will stop the inevitable, but it might make you end up looking even older because of the self criticism that keeps perpetuating from it.
What methods do you use to stay looking and feeling your best on a daily, weekly or monthly basis?