As we get older, our bodies change, our lifestyles may have changed due to medical issues, and people we loved and were close to may no longer be around. We become frustrated when faced with the fact that we cannot control things or prevent certain things from happening. This can cause us to feel out of control and may inhibit us from fully enjoying our lives. If we begin to understand how to diffuse these emotions, we can begin to reduce some of the stress they cause.
Conscious aging is the ability to recognize that some of everyday problems, and their solutions, arise from within us. By practicing mindfulness in our day-to-day practices, we can become more aware of our surroundings. We all possess the potential to embrace change and limit our dissatisfaction. Conscious aging can help us not only feel more satisfied, but the philosophy can help us overcome our self-limitations and fear while promoting inclusivity, wholeness, connection and compassion.
We can begin applying conscious aging by giving ourselves permission to experience our feelings, while at the same time taking an inventory of the value our lives possess. One first step is to contemplate beliefs and ideas that may be holding us back from creating options better suited to the new path our lives have taken.
Another measure that can be taken is acceptance of the decisions we’ve made in life. By absolving ourselves of any mistakes we believe we’ve made, we can also take the time to savor the fruits from the decisions that at the time seemed insignificant.
Lastly, identifying who or what is meaningful can be key to having a life in which we feel more purpose and gratitude. During this period of exploration, it may be helpful to begin a Gratitude Journal. You may be able to gain and appreciate a greater sense of life’s achievements by pondering and writing down encouraging thoughts, feelings, pleasant experiences and the bonds known with loved ones. Writing these moments and feelings down will help you cherish the simple things, such as the feeling of a summer breeze, a smile on a child, the color on a flower, or the taste of a favorite fruit, as well as help you live more mindfully and in the moment. Looking back at past journal entries can also benefit us later on when we may not be feeling as confident or joyful.
All life journeys are unique, but we can each follow the same principles of conscious aging in order to age with purpose, overcome challenges and connect with our communities and ourselves. To learn more about conscious aging and its’ benefits, register for our webinar, “Conscious Aging: How Healthcare Professionals Can Guide Their Patients Through the Aging Process” at www.www.haotou.icu/Conscious-Aging.