Wellness After 30: Getting The Most Out Of Later Life

How do you define your Wellness? How does it show up in your life currently? About 15 years ago, I ask myself these questions many times. When I was in my early thirties, I watched my body, my health, my emotions and my sense of “self” slip away. I did not know what it felt like to wake up with a purpose and the will to move forward. I wanted to get a handle on my life and find a better way of living, one that would enhance the quality of my life as I aged.

After researching, soul searching, educating and defining what was important to me, I’ve come to believe that incorporating wellness habits into your life on a daily basis is the key. I recognize that wellness is unique to each person; it encompasses every aspect of your life and requires work, determination and commitment to bring about change. The change needed to bring balance and harmony to your life. This means wellness is a choice. What an enlightening discovery, I thought. Once I realized that it was a choice, I found a way to tap into my “self “strength and saw a time of change as an opportunity to be a better me.

Wellness is a choice. It requires that you do something everyday to honor your body, mind and spirit. Achieving wellness means taking control and directing your life where you want it to go. It means you are in command of all aspects of your life: physical, career, relationships, finances, spiritual, environment and emotional well-being. As you know, this is easier said than done. I’ve been a wellness coach for several years and find the denial of self-improvement and the lack of effort to achieve wellness, especially for those over the age of 30, dangerous.

The dictionary definition of wellness is: “The state of optimal well-being, not simply the absence of illness, but an improved quality of life resulting from enhanced physical, mental, and spiritual health”.

Many people are not willing to do the work to achieve wellness and go into denial about how well they really are. After a while they find comfort within their denial and use it as a coping strategy to avoid bigger problems. They will continue avoiding small problems until a major crisis develops, and sometimes even then it doesn’t trigger any action. The areas of life someone thinks about in the privacy of his or her heart (or alone in the dark) are exactly the areas that need to be honored–the mind, body and spirit.

Some reasons why adults don’t incorporate wellness activities into their daily lives include lack of time, effort, desire and commitment. I was talking to a client of mine the other day and he told me a co-worker had challenged him to run in a race. My client has been a heavy smoker for years and has not been physically active. I asked him how he planned on running the entire distance. He then told me about what a great runner he was in high school – more than twenty years ago. I explained to him that he had become very comfortable with denial about his health and wellness, and that I needed him to accept the truth about his overall well-being. We then set some goals to get him through a race at a later time, which included kicking the smoking habit as a first step.

It’s not only the physical being that affects wellness; stress is a growing contributor and excuse preventing people from taking control of their own destiny. Investigating where your time is going and then adjusting your priorities to free up time to incorporate activities important to your health and wellness reduces stress. You must re-evaluate your daily priorities and approach them in order of importance for your efforts to be successful. One suggestion might be instead of working 12 hours per day, work 10 and spend the two extra hours honoring your well-being.

According to time-use researchers and exercise experts, we’re making excuses about our time. “People certainly do have time. There are about 40 hours a week of free time in this country,” says John Robinson, a professor of sociology at the University of Maryland and co-author of Time for Life: The Surprising Way Americans Use Their Time. People are watching TV an average of 15 to 20 hours a week, so they have “room to carve out more time to be active.”

The main thing you should do is put yourself at the top of your priority list. Wellness is important, especially after age 30, because getting older brings with it an abundance of new metabolic, physical, physiological, emotional and mental challenges. And while change can be unsettling, this time of change can also be viewed as an opportunity to get the most out of life.

Later life can be a time of rest, fun, relaxation, maybe even retirement, and most of all a time to enjoy life. It should be a time to embark on new adventures whether it’s travel, a hobby or a fun job. Here are some suggestions to start creating a life that honors your wellness:

1. Be honest about how well you really are.

Realistically look at the areas of your life: physical, career, relationships, finances, spiritual, environment and emotional well-being. Identify the area(s) that need improvement. Set goals to achieve desired results one step at a time. Buy a journal to track your activity.

2. Assess your readiness for change and willingness to embrace it.

Identify and write down the benefits of wellness to your life and your willingness to make the necessary changes. Remember: every move, forward or back, is part of the normal process of change.

3. Identify and eliminate barriers and challenges that could impede your success.

There are always barriers to overcome as we move toward our goals. Select one barrier to work on at time. For every negative message you encounter, turn it into a positive one. For example,”I don’t have enough time” can turn into “everything that needs to be done will get done”. Learning to replace the negative messages with positive ones is a matter of establishing new habits. It takes time and practice.

4. Set clearly defined and measurable wellness goals.

Create fun and interesting ways to fulfill your goals. For example, to be more physically active at work, you may want to take a two-minute walk every hour around your work environment. Break your goals down into small, incremental steps.

5. Create meaningful wellness priorities.

Take a closer look at how you spend your time on an average day. Record your daily activity. Find opportunities for wellness activities you might not have known existed and incorporate them into your daily life.

6. Challenge your wellness changes and strive to achieve even more.

Make simple changes first and then take a look at the things that are harder and that will require the most change to achieve your desired results. Tackle them one at a time.

7. Design and refine your goals so you’ll get the most out of them everyday.

If you don’t get the results you want in a reasonable amount of time, go back to the “drawing board.” Re-design and refine your goals to fit what works for you. You may even want to get some professional help.

8. Make lasting changes to your lifestyle. Identify and celebrate your accomplishments.

Reward yourself! Review your favorite activities. Try new activities to renew your motivation.

The pace of today’s world is so fast that we expect quick solutions to everything. If results are not immediate we’re quick to quit. However, the long-term results that extend our lives are well worth the time, work and effort that we put into taking care of ourselves. Wellness is a way of life. Get yours back!

Your Way To Health, Happiness & Prosperity With EFT

It’s such a struggle having to be positive all the time.

Having a good attitude. Seeing the bright side to everything. Life’s hard enough as it is and when that becomes apparent, sometimes it really *is* right and proper to really express yourself.

You know, emotions build up. Or should I say, energies build up. And up. It is just like a pressure beginning to rise – hardly noticeable at first, then more and more. The pressure grows, the energy gets denser and tighter. And then there comes the point where the energy body needs to have this pressure removed or else it seriously starts to hurt, seriously starts to unbalance body and mind – and that’s why and when people blow their tops, start shouting or the tears begin to flow.

Of course, the reason for this is a blockage in the energy system, a stopper in the flow that causes the normal energy flow to back up and creates this pressure scenario. When you take out the blockages, the energy rushes through and out and phew – what a relief! That’s when people say, “Oh that’s so strange, that feeling isn’t there anymore – I feel fine now!”

The classical EFT effect, if you will.

But here’s our special application – whining.

Whining is an activity to *express* backed up emotions just as much as a panic attack or a temper tantrum – just at a lower end of the scale.

Here, we are talking about blockages not in the “life-and-death” systems of the energy body but more like a nagging pain or a thorn in the foot.

Even so, when the pressure gets too bad something has to be done and then we whine – about the government, about our spouses, our children, our finances, the weather, anything really to release the pressure for a while.

Interestingly, if people were allowed to whine more frequently to their partners, their co-workers and strangers in the street, they might be more healthy in the long run. But our 21st century First World civilisation frowns upon those who whine, accusing them of having a bad attitude, shunning them at parties and overlooking them for promotions.

We soon learn that whining is NOT how to make friends and influence people (other than to walk away swiftly with a sense of disgust!) and guess what?

What happens to the unexpressed pressure build up which could have been released with a jolly good, “Oh I’m so fed up! It’s so unfair! Whaaa …”?

Well of course, it will have to be *expressed* *somehow* – in other and possibly more damaging ways. In addictions and overeating, in repetitive behaviours, exercise, compulsive cleaning or working, and of course, there are many substances that can come to our aid, producing a state shift and making us move somewhere else for a time where we are unaware of that pressure down there …

So I have decided that whining is indeed, healthy and should be seriously tackled on a regular basis as a prophylactic mental and physical health measure.

Hopefully, we can use EFT as we whine to actually target and unblock the energy flow which *causes* the whining in the first place and thereby not only drain the metaphorical/energetic puss out of the boil but actually heal what caused the boil in the first place – so more whining will lead to less, and less, and eventually we will actually be *really* able to display that “good attitude” of fortitude, pro-activity, strength and courage we have *pretended* to have had for oh so long.

So, and without any further ado, here is:

The EFT Whining Protocol

1. When the time is right, with or without another, sit down with an EFT protocol to hand.

2. Think about something that really annoys you about your life.

Please note we are not talking about major past issues of trauma and abuse in this case, but something you could really whine on about in no uncertain terms for ages. Pick your topic, take a deep breath and start whining.

Example. “Ok, about my wife. She *really* gets on my nerves. Always wanting to watch TV, can’t get her off the couch with a forklift truck! And that’s the least of it. The other day, she actually (insert next item) …”

3. As you whine, you tap. You may tap randomly or intuitively, or simply just tap the whole round, round and round, all through the whine. When you get to the Karate Chop point, you start again with the top of the eyebrow.

Please note: The tapping tends to get faster as you get into the whine. That’s alright and a natural response!

4. Continue until you:

a) run out of things to tap on;
b) feel lots better;
c) start laughing;
d) have somehow forgotten what you were tapping on.

To sum up:

Whining is a natural human activity that denotes the need for an energy release. In and of itself it is very healthy and prevents the need for escalation into cocain abuse, panic attacks, road rage and psychosomatic illness.

However, when the activity of whining is paired with the release and un-blocking effects of Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), mind-body health is served in a profound way.

The EFT Whining Protocol is thereby fully recommended as a prophylactic measure and method for all.

Seriously.

3 Ways to Become a Super Person

I was driving down the freeway the other day when I saw a billboard with a picture of Christopher Reeve on it. The caption simply read, “Super man.” People might have remembered him for his timeless portrayal of Superman. But they will never forget his tireless crusade on behalf of disabled everywhere. The tragic horse-riding accident that left him paralyzed also gave him wings to soar above his physical limitations. That’s not to say that it wasn’t difficult for him. He even contemplated suicide at one point. So it made me think, what characteristics did he have that made him so strong?

Courage. Most of us shy away from a challenge. Maybe we don’t like confrontation, or maybe we just want to take the path of least resistance. But there comes a time when we, individually, must face our deepest fears. It could be accepting a job that moves you half way across the country. Or walking out on a relationship that should have ended ten years ago. Whatever is keeping you from enjoying your life needs to be examined, evaluated, and executed. No one’s going to do it for you. Be brave.

Optimism. Ever hear the old glass half full/half empty analogy? Well, it’s true. You have a 50/50 chance of being positive or negative. Which side do you find yourself on most of the time? Negative thinking can be a very hard habit to break. But the good thing is, it is easily remedied. How? Speak positively. Act positively. Replace negative self-talk with uplifting messages that you tape to your mirror and day planner. And before you know it, you will think positively. Action precedes attitude. A good attitude is contagious, so surround your self with people who are upbeat and encouraging.

Self-determination. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years? A person without a goal is like a bus without a driver. Don’t let limitations, either real or perceived, keep you from your objective. And don’t listen to the nay Sayers, even if at times you think they must be right. If something is important to you, stick with it. You will be amazed at what you can do.

There is a bit of a superhero in all of us. Sometimes, it takes an unexpected event to bring that hero out. And sometimes, we can help someone else see that hero in themselves.

Are You Focusing On What You Really Want?

Imagine you’re happily driving down a country road on a clear, sunny day. Suddenly a semi truck crosses the center line and is heading right at you. Heart pounding and adrenaline rushing, you react. Will you avert disaster? Maybe. Maybe not. In this moment, your life depends on where you focus.

Professional driving instructors tell us that what people usually do in emergency situations is to stay focused on the object they are trying to avoid. In driving, where your eyes and mind are focused is most often where you will steer.

Unfortunately, if you were focused on the truck in the situation above you would likely steer right into it. The route to safety is to focus on where you want to go. In this case, you’d look away from the truck to a place that’s safer. You would then automatically steer the car in that direction. Safe!

You may be wondering, “What the heck does that have to do with creating more pleasure, passion, and purpose in my life?”

My response is “A great deal!” As in the example of the truck, your life depends on where you focus.

Focusing on What You Don’t Want Steers You to More of That

Often when we are feeling stuck, dissatisfied, confused, or unhappy we are focused on what we DON’T want. We are looking at the truck we’d like to avoid.

We’re thinking or saying “I don’t want to be in this miserable job another day” or “I don’t want to work on this project” or “I don’t want to have pizza for dinner tonight.”

From the big events to the small details in life, we tend to put a lot of our thoughts and attention on precisely what we don’t want.

So, what’s the problem with that? Well, it’s kind of like steering your car into the truck. The more you focus on what you don’t want, the more you head in that direction.

Your mind is wired to create whatever you focus on.

Napoleon Hill’s “Think and Grow Rich” and Maxwell Maltz’s “Psychocybernetics” are two classic books on this subject. These and other researchers tell us that the mind can’t tell the difference between something you’re thinking about that you want and something you’re thinking about that you do not want.

Whatever you think about, your mind goes to work to make that happen.

Getting More of What You Really Do Want

If you’d like to get more of what you want in life (pleasure, passion, purpose), shift your focus away from what you don’t want and clearly, purposefully towards what you do want.

Your mind will go to work creating that. You’ll get unstuck. Your energy will increase. Solutions, alternatives, and options will come to you more easily.

Here’s a recent personal example. At the end of a long day, I was getting ready to prepare dinner. I’d been grocery shopping and had the ingredients for three complex dishes I hadn’t made before.

Hungry and tired, I reviewed the recipes but quickly became frustrated and overwhelmed. I started saying to myself “I don’t want to make these dishes. I don’t want this to be so hard. I don’t want these recipes to be so complicated.”

Those thoughts increased my agitation. I felt stuck and upset. Then I took a deep breath. I asked myself, “What do I really want in this situation right now?” (Besides a personal chef!)

The answer was “I want to make a healthy and great tasting dinner in a way that is fast and easy for me.”

I quickly saw a solution I’d been unable to see minutes before: make only one of the new dishes that night along with a simple salad and save the other new recipes for another evening.

So that’s what I did. The cooking was less stressful and the food turned out great. I switched from what I didn’t want to what I did want. And it worked!

Are you focused on what you want or what you don’t want?

I know many (maybe most) of us have an ingrained habit pattern that focuses us on what we don’t want. Changing this pattern can be challenging. And I’ve seen with myself and my clients that it’s definitely worth doing!

In Your Life

The more you focus on what you do want, the more pleasure, passion, and purpose you will create in your life. Focus on the clear road ahead, not on the truck coming at you. Try experimenting with this.

1) When you’re feeling stuck, stressed, worried, angry, unhappy, or upset, become aware of what you’re focusing on. You may be focusing on exactly what you don’t want.

2) As soon as you notice you’re focusing on what you DON’T want, ask yourself, “What DO I want in this situation?”

3) Purposefully and intentionally, change your focus to and keep your focus on what you do want.

4) Repeat as needed.

Enjoy!