By: Robynn Lin Fredericks
Being ageless is trending, but what does it take to truly be living it out! I like to think of it as several puzzle pieces all coming together to make your individual masterpiece a whole picture!
Putting The Pieces To Work
Let's look at all the pieces that work together, in no particular order. That's up to you as to what you need to work on!
This is sometimes the hardest thing to overcome! After all, you don't necessarily feel ageless yet, how are you suppose to change your mindset? To truly be ageless, you must first be free of an ageist stereotype mentality. Ageism puts restrictions on you. It tells you what you cannot do, because of your age. Perhaps it's in a clothing style, or pursuing a new passion. Realize, maybe for the first time, you can do anything that you put your mind to. You probably believed that twenty years ago, but somewhere along the way, you allowed a number to steal it from you. Well, it's time to pick that belief back up. Stop using the words "I can't" and replace with "I can"!
EXERCISE: Look in the mirror and speak positive words and affirmations to yourself daily, such as:
"I am ageless!"
"I am ever evolving!"
"I am youthful and timeless, at EVERY age!"
"I am open and receptive to goodness and abundance in my life!"
"My passions and dreams are alive!"
"My life is full of joy and adventure!"
"A number will never define me!"
What does an ageless lifestyle look like? It's active, it's playful, it's adventurous! The days of being a couch potato are over, why? Because we know that according to research, sitting is the new smoking! Health is a priority and the more active your lifestyle, the more all of the pieces begin coming together!
EXERCISE: Once a month (or maybe even once a week!), try something new or go someplace new and allow yourself to truly enjoy the experience, take a photo or journal about it. What did you like? What would you change for next time? What's next?
Gone are the days where age dictated your style! Begin looking at Instagram posts under #ootd (outfit of the day) and #style. There are hundreds of hashtags you can be following. Find your faves and take note of what you like...and don't like. But before you go out and start rebuilding your wardrobe, find out what looks good on your body type and what colors suit you best. Everyone will have a different opinion, yours is the only one that matters! We get several exercises on this one!
EXERCISE ONE: When the sun is highest in the sky, or under a "daylight" lightbulb, take 2 fabric swatches, one will be a true yellow and one a true blue. if you're outside, drape one at a time over your arm and watch how the coloring of your arm changes before your eyes! If you are indoors (have that daylight bulb in a place where it is shining on your face and not creating strange shadows), stand in front of a mirror and hold the swatch to your face, or if it's big enough, drape it under your chin. Does this color wash you out? Does it make you look like your turning a bad shade of green from food poisoning? Or does it make you look vibrant and healthy? Every color will have either yellow or blue undertones. Stick with the ones that make you look beautiful!
EXERCISE TWO (for you Ladies!): Head to Victoria's Secret and tell them you need a bra fitting. It's free and trust me, it's changed from when you were thirty!
EXERCISE THREE: Now the fun begins! Go to a department store with someone you trust AND (this is important) who's style you admire. If you have a little play room in your budget, find a local stylist and hire them for this part (be sure to look at their work and be sure you like what they have styled prior to hiring them!). Some department stores have stylists who work for free, BUT they will be pushing a sale and not always honest. Begin trying on some of those styles you found on Insta and see first hand what looks good. I suggested a dept store simply because you have every option in the world available in one spot. After you find a few good looks, now go to your fave stores and purchase a few new items that can compliment your current wardrobe. You should consider a few classic pieces and update seasonally with a few trendy ones.
Health & Fitness
This needs to become your top priority. Your body has learned bad habits and has been storing toxins for years and while it's never too late to work on health, it doesn't change overnight!
No diet is for every person. Find what works for you, but keep in mind foundational foods which have been discovered in helping protect your telomeres and fundamental practices in the "Blue Zones." Even noted by the Surgeon General that diet is the biggest contributor to disease, it's time to make these practices part of your daily food plan.
1. Eat more non-gmo and clean produce. Be aware of the "Clean 15" (foods which are okay to eat non-organic) and the "Dirty Dozen" foods (foods which REALLY should be organic). You can google these lists, which are updated yearly. Plan these foods to be a large percentage of your diet, a great aim is 7 servings/daily!
2. Eat less heavily processed food which hide bad-for-you ingredients! Check out the ingredients. Are only whole foods listed? Is there an expiration date? Any added sugars? Can you pronounce the ingredients? As I use to tell my clients, "If God didn't make it, do you really want to eat it?"
3. If you eat meat and/or dairy, make it a side dish to your veggies! Also check into "Pastured" products, from meat to eggs to dairy. What the animal eats, you eat. The more greens it gets, the better it is for you and, in some cases, has even been found to reverse harmful cholesterols!
4. Increase seeds and nuts in your diet. I prefer raw and sprouted as they're easier to digest. Soaking nuts prior to consuming also helps with digestion. Be aware of nuts in bulk containers, where you have no idea when their expiration date is, especially if they're shelled. Smell them! Nuts and seeds are high in oils, which can become rancid when spoiled.
5. Lets increase our water, y'all! Our body's are made of this and we need it to survive! Don't like the taste? Up the nutrition value by adding lemon, cucumber or even rose. Fruits added in also make it a fun, tasty drink! Another option, look for a yummy herbal or green tea that can give you even more anti-oxidants and lend an amazing flavor as you get your hydration! (**hint: if your skin is looking dried out with lots of little lines, it's likely dehydrated! Add more water to your plan as well as essential fatty acids!)
EXERCISE: Begin keeping a food journal, note your weight at the beginning. Keep track of foods, water consumption and how you feel throughout the day. If you are regularly craving a food, how does it make you feel when you eat it, how about an hour later?
We are always looking for that magic potion in a bottle, aren't we? Well, let me just say, it starts with your nutrition! What's going on "inside" your body will show up on the "outside"!
I'm not going to tell you what brands to be using, but realize, that magic potion really does not exist! No need in spending time and money chasing after every new product that comes out! However, some great choices to include in your daily routine (aside from cleansing daily!!!) are organic oils which are loaded with anti-oxidants, such as rose-hip and argon. Please do your research and know where the company gets their oil as many use "fakes" or add carrier oils, so you're not getting pure product. Cleansing, hydration and nutrition is key to healthy skin! Add-ons like masks, treatments, laser are all wonderful and can give your skin an extra boost, but if the foundation is not healthy, these add-ons will not have any long term effect.
Do keep in mind that your skin is porous, meaning everything you put on will be absorbed by your body and your liver will be the one who has to handle any chemicals and/or toxins. Lets give the liver a break for awhile and use the same tactics you do with your food. Look at the ingredients. Maybe some of these you'll need to look up and research. It's really frightening some of the ingredients being used in our cosmetics and skin care, including estrogenic ingredients! Do your research!
EXERCISE: As you begin your new food plan and scale back on your skin care, using more natural ingredients, take a before photo. Don't worry. It's for your eyes only. Give your new, healthy cells a chance to come to the surface and take another shot. Natural skin cell turnover slows as you age. A natural process that takes two weeks for babies takes three to four weeks for teens. Once past your teens, your skin generally renews itself once a month (about every 30 to 40 days) but gets even more sluggish after 50, renewing itself only 45 to 90 days.