Written by Janice Messino
Do 100 Year Old People Say The Glass is Half Empty?
I feel like a lucky person. I take care of my health and I intend to be in my son’s life for decades to come; I want to get to know my grandchildren and great grandchildren. Time doesn’t have to be running out—it’s about how we choose to age. Every day is a new day.
I often tell the stories of certain residents who I came to know in various healthcare facilities. There were some residents who got together and talked about their ailments and there were others who made the best of every day. Those who chose to enjoy their days seemed to be happier people than those who lived in their problems. As time went by, I noticed that those who lived in a happier state actually lived longer. Unhappy residents with negative health beliefs became ill and passed away sooner. How many people do we know who are in their 90’s or 100’s and who look at their glass as half empty? Not many.
Are We Signaling Our Bodies to Live or Die?
Our subconscious mind has triggers; it triggers our bodies to react to what we’re telling the brain. This phenomenon is known through the science of epigenetics.
Epigenetics looks at the ways in which our body “turns on” certain genes and not others. The basis of this idea is a recognition that just because we have a certain gene doesn’t mean that gene will express. Every day, our body is getting one of two signals: the signal to live or the signal to die. The body takes those signals and produces what it needs to live, or to begin the process of deterioration. There are “signals” that impact life, our thinking, our level of exercise, our diets, our social lives, and our mental engagement. We don’t know our future or when our end will come, but I think it’s important to manage our thoughts and feed the right triggers, so that no matter our chronological age, we don’t trigger ourselves into a dying mode.
Training Your Brain
Be careful when thinking negative thoughts. When I have a cranky back or a pain somewhere in my body, I don’t utter anything age-related about it. Instead, I simply tell myself that I want to work hard at not accepting physical limitations. After all, some limitations may be genetic and age-related, but they are usually worsened by some other factor in our lives, like proper diet or regular exercise. I do everything I can to assist my good health rather than just accept my limitations and then call it “aging”
Six years ago, I discovered multiple challenges with my back. Movement was painful and that slowed me down. I refused surgery and kept consulting professionals and doing research until I learned that there were other ways to address the issue. As a result, I enhanced my yoga practice, learned mind-body wellness techniques, and began a daily practice of qigong. Now through further studies, I am also able to help others as well.
We Become What We Think About
What we talk about, what we spend our time on, is what feeds our mind. I try to avoid talking about my health and, when friends start sharing their aches, I try to change the subject to talking about positive solutions.
My answer to aging is that we should assume that we have unlimited amounts of time.
I am not insensitive to major health challenges; I am saying that your attitude can make a significant difference. The key is being engaged mentally and physically. Feed your mind to trigger a long healthy life. Don’t place limits on yourself about how much time you have left. Assume you have a lot, because maybe you do! Include behaviors and a lifestyle that supports your energy level and good health.
There is so much we can accomplish throughout our lives. I ask myself, what am I doing that is not supporting my ability to live a strong, healthy, long life, then I take appropriate action. You might want to ask yourself the same thing.