Aging Gracefully

3 Tips For Aging Gracefully
Adapted from Carolyn Dunn

Recently I told my son how excited I was to be crafting my new business of Life/Career Coaching in mid-life.
“You?” he said. “In mid-life?” Pause . . .
“Gosh Mom. You never told us you were planning to live to be 120!”
Well. So much for the details.
Whether “mid-life” or 120, it’s important for women to have a plan for aging gracefully — and do this well before the need is upon us.

Busy women of all ages need to be:
1. Mentally confident: I have found there are mental tricks we can use when we feel ill at ease with ourselves or our circumstances.
Barbara Walters was interviewing the very shy wife of a U. S. Presidential contender. Walters asked her how she managed all those large White House social events. Abigail McCarthy replied, “I stand at the door and take a deep breath. I say to myself, ‘I am who I am. I look the way I look. I am my age.’ Then I breathe again and enter the room.”
I have stood at many a door in my life repeating those very words to myself. They calm me and reorient me to the reality of who I am in that moment.

2. Physically Sound: My Mom trained me to walk tall. Since I am only 5’4¼” that’s about as tall as I could walk. But posture does matter, especially as we age.
As the years go by, I have noticed that women can walk old before they are old. My wonderful mentor, Anne Ortlund, taught me to walk with vigor! “Chin up. Shoulders back. Walk briskly,” she would coach.
Whether I’m carrying the laundry from one end of the house to the other or maneuvering across Macy’s parking lot, that’s my mantra.

And, yes we do need to pay attention to where we are walking. But look down with your eyes, not by bending your head and shoulders. You’ll look ten years younger.
Not only do we want to be mentally confident and physically sound, it is also necessary to be . . .

3. Forward Thinking. I want to live in a world where women are free, and actually encouraged, to reinvent themselves every decade.
We have our decades of education, coupling up, child bearing and rearing, school years, launching children and then . . . and then . . . What?
Why not go back to school? Why not think about mission trips? Why not get a broker’s license, take piano lessons, begin a painting class, learn French. Yes. Why not?
Let’s live fully and with enthusiasm as long as we are able.

Our ideal Godly female role model is “clothed with strength (she stands tall) and dignity (she remembers who she is); and she can laugh at the days to come (she is forward thinking).” Prov. 31:25

We women are living longer and better. If you’re in mid-life, you too may live to be 120. Or not. But whatever your age, don’t waste a bit of that time!

Do a Google search for possibilities for your next season. Brainstorm with your pals. Hire a coach.

So, what’s YOUR plan? How are you reinventing yourself for this next decade? Leave us a comment below.

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