reverseAgingProcess-sq“No body is worth more than your body”  Melody Carstairs

Last time we spoke about the fact that stress is the single biggest impediment to being health. We explored how the stress hormone cortisol, a catabolic hormone, is released into your body whenever you feel or perceive a stressful event, and that the secret of stalling the aging process, is in mastering the ability to release fewer catabolic hormones caused by stress.

Over the next few weeks we’ll cover some of the many ways of handling stress more effectively including: exercising, eating better, practising meditation daily and of course all round raising your level of consciousness.

Let me start by asking you this:

Are you someone who stays late at the office and misses a workout because you wanted to finish a project? An important deadline may be looming, but how often is it absolutely necessary for the work to be done, instead of you taking care of your health and wellness?

Taking care of ourselves often times lands at the bottom of our priority list. We only seem to tend to our bodies after everything else is taken care of. That means for many of us, health and wellness activities don’t make it into our daily calendars. It can also mean that our actions send messages to others that health and wellness is only important as long as it does not compete with other priorities.

I know I used to be one of those people. I wanted to lose weight and get fit but bemoaned the fact that my job prevented me from getting home with any energy to cook or from having any sort of sociable exercise regime. I would dream of pressing a magic button or taking a magic pill to have my ideal body.

And I certainly wasn’t alone. Let’s face it, most people don’t really want to go through the work to change, what they REALLY want is to be living their life AFTER they have already successfully made the change. Which is what makes it easy to find excuses.

When it comes to the topic of exercise which of these sounds most likely what you say:

  • I can’t exercise, my job won’t allow it, I’m too tired from work, I have to spend that time with my family;
  • I won’t exercise, I’m not good at it, I’m not athletic, I’m too fat, it takes too much effort;
  • I have to exercise, my doctor told me my must or my husband is putting pressure on me to do it; or
  • I need to exercise or my clothing won’t fit or I’ll have a heart-attack like my father did at my age.

All of these responses are catabolic and are not coming from a place of choice. The response: “I choose to exercise” is the only one where true choice is exercised (excuse the pun). The keys is therefore in looking at the choices you make about exercises and what you eat. The trick is to mentally shift your desire to exercise and create a more active lifestyle by connecting the choices you make with the outcome you really want.

Just for a moment, try looking at exercise from a different perspective by linking it to who you are and your most important values. Is fun a value to you? Then make sure it’s fun to exercise. Is having time alone something you value? Then look at exercise as a time for you to spend on your own. Is music something you love? Then think of exercise as a way to listen to your favourite songs.

To tip the scale from not doing to doing, let me share a few things about exercise, to get you motivated. Even if you’ve heard it before, sometimes it can take hearing it more than once to tip the scale:

  1. In addition to firming you up and keeping your heart healthy, exercise removes catabolic hormones and toxins from the body, which reduces stress and helps to improve your mood;
  2. Exercise isn’t limited to the gym; it’s any movement that gets the heart pumping and the muscles going: dancing, walking, riding a bike, gardening and yoga all increase your anabolic energy;
  3. It’s important to create a habit you can live with, so a few minutes each day, or at least most days of the week is better than a marathon session once in a while;
  4. Start small if you haven’t been exercising and it might be helpful to your doctor first.

The most important point of all, is to remember to be consciously aware AS you exercise, enjoying each moment of it. Exercise is a gift you give to yourself and your body.

So before next time……..

1. As a starting point for this “Reversing the Aging Process” series, take a look at the chart below. For each Health & Wellness topic, rate your current level of satisfaction on a scale of 1 (totally dissatisfied) to 10 (absolutely satisfied):

The amount of sleep I get on a regular basis 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
How and what I eat 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
How I exercise 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
My posture 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
How physically flexible I am 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
My medical health condition 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
How I manage my medical health 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Stress and its effects on my life 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Mind/Body/Spirit Connection 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Living a healthy and well lifestyle 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Amount of rest and relaxation I get 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
How effectively I deal with obstacles 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Look at the areas where you have rated your satisfaction less than 10 – which of these areas is most important for you to develop?

3. Select one; what’s one thing you could do this week to increase your ranking in that area by just 1 point?

For now, I invite you to check out our Facebook page to learn more about ways you can cultivate your self-awareness and increase your level of consciousness.

*Some content from the iPEC Law of Being Audio Programme

About the author

Anna Margolis is our Mastering your Mind blogger. She is a revitalised former city lawyer turned freer of minds. Find out more: iPEC London, Facebook, Pinterest

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