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Sometimes I practice guitar. Recently, I tried to play a riff and it hurt my finger so bad I could feel my forehead muscle frown and the little wrinkle between my brows deepen. I relaxed my forehead (will use Sanford Bennett’s wrinkle rubout later) and told my finger not to worry, it will only hurt a little before it gets stronger. Just like self-care.
Choose to Lose, Maintain, or Gain?
We are premium high-performance beings endowed with a body and mind that have amazing capabilities. We are evolutionary and plastic, capable of adapting to a variety of conditions. However, the body is not infinitely capable of maintaining health while being bombarded by synthetic chemicals from the highly processed foods and products that we consume and absorb. The average woman applies more than 500 synthetic chemicals on a daily basis. Nor are the body and brain able to maintain strength, flexibility, conditioning, lubrication, and intelligence when they are not intentionally used.
Instead of aging en masse with the mainstream culture, choose not to lose any of your capabilities and personal identity.
Choose not to lose… instead maintain and increase your body and brain capabilities.
Choose to invest the time and discipline required to provide the self-care that you need to function at your highest level so that you may endure and enjoy all that life offers. Beauty will follow.
To me, beauty does not consist of certain facial constructs; instead beauty resides in all people in different ways. Beauty reflects the multitude of differences among us. Holistic beauty is an expression of kind inner thoughts and actions, physical and mental well-being, hard work, deep rest, great circulation, time in nature and nutrient dense nourishment that combine and are reflected as individual beauty.
Self-care is not a fad or a luxury; it is a personal, familial and societal responsibility to keep your mind and body strong and flexible.
Self-care practices began thousands of years ago. Yoga has been practiced for at least 5,000 years (maybe 10,000) as the need for special personal maintenance to optimize well-being and strength were recognized.
What have you chosen to lose?
In skin care and self-care, I ask, what have you chosen to lose? Unless you have debilitating physical and/or mental conditions that prevent practicing self-care you are capable of maintaining all aspects of yourself at a high and beautiful level… if you choose.
What have you given up? The strength to walk a mile; ability to touch your toes and move freely; living without pain; having supple glowing skin, bright eyes, and a sharp and calm mind; the list will be similar and different for all.
The good news is that it is never too late to choose to maintain and gain.
You may earn back almost each and every part of yourself. Our evolutionary elastic selves are poised to respond to change (adaptation) for survival and will improve with effort. You may become stronger, softer, smoother, smarter - all that you desire and nurture. Check out Sanford Bennett’s transformation from 50 to 70 years of age. He implemented self-care practices and became the “man who grew young”.
Choose to change the way that you care for yourself. Choose to change for your survival. Choose to keep as much of yourself as possible to live a high-quality life in every moment as you mature. You don’t need a lot of money for self-care. You do need time, motivation, discipline and fortitude to nourish and challenge yourself.
The next time that you say something like “I can’t, because I am too old to _____ (fill in blank) INSTEAD SAY I can’t because I chose to lose the ability to ________. Today, the mainstream cultural aging condition is more about a lack of self-care. Loss of function is a personal choice given up under the excuse of aging.
Choose you. Let your body and brain know that you need all of you! To prove it, you have to use it… all!
Exercise your brain and get smarter! Exercise your body and get stronger! Stretch everything, regain flexibility! Choose to maintain and gain intelligently and with guidance via teachers, YouTube tutorials or visit the library for instructional books.
Choose to change, grow your mind and body for you, for me, and for all. While you are at it, please, please promote a healthy environment - spread kindness and take good care of the Earth, it is the basis of our health and source for everything that we have. When health is optimized, beauty will glow.
Absolute Basics for Self-Care
· Learn how to cook using fresh and pure ingredients
· Eat whole, nutrient dense food
· Practically eliminate processed food and sugar
· Read labels
· Avoid synthetic chemicals
· Buy organic - at a minimum the 12 most chemical laden vegetables/fruits “dirty dozen”
· Buy raw (nutrient dense) organic fats and oils, toxins are held in fats and persist
· Stop using synthetic fragrance anything and everything
· Use healing essential oil scents only, nose has special receptors for these oils
· Skip the drugstore, most of the time
· Buy or make basic body care products, easy, save money, avoid synthetic stuff
· Stop using cleansers with synthetic chemicals
· Back to basics with home cleaning products, save money and reduce exposure
· Promote lymphatic circulation
· Increase overall circulation
· Cardio 6 days/week walk, bike, run, hike, machines, jump rope, any way you can
· Stretch a little daily and a lot once or twice a week
· Practice being mindful and meditate to relax the brain
· Breath from the diaphragm
· Practice parasympathetic breathing, longer on exhale than inhale
· Maintain health of soft tissue using trigger point therapy
· Work hard
· Sleep, sleep, sleep
· Rest hard
· Wear sunscreen and use sun protection
To gain, you MUST push yourself beyond what you think you can do
· Try to learn excruciatingly difficult mental things, music, dance, math, language
· Improve cardio – go regular and go faster, alternate and go a little faster
· Increase strength (a little heavier and different challenges over time)
· Stretch, stretch more (lightly, persistently increase range of motion of everything)
Start slow, select a few and strive to do more. You have a lifetime to grow young.
Ask others to join this journey, teach children and loved ones how to care for themselves. Give the gift of whole health to yourself and all. Beauty will follow.
Take good care of yourself! xo Deborah