Hear You, Listen to You, Follow You

Hear You, Listen to You, Follow You

Recently, I have been going through a very reflective state of mind..and I had a thought, why is it that we women over 50 feel this new found freedom to be who we want to be and live as we want to live??

Is it merely that we’ve reached this time in our lives when we don’t care what others think, or is it simply a time in our lives when our wisdom brings us further, or is it a time when our true selves suddenly appear???? Maybe..or is it simply because we are older and have less patience for others competing with us or judging us….

Or possibly..is it feeling the accomplishment of our life roles; child, student, wife, professional, mother, grandmother, that opens and clears the path to our soul, allowing our respective smoldering gifts to not only emerge and bloom, but to actually “re-emerge”? Is it the chapter not simply of emergence..but re-emergence which brings to light our next true purpose????

Maybe..just maybe.. it’s simply the proverbial life’s “fork in the road” as we arrive at a pause in our journey now needing to map out what is next to come and what is the right path to choose?

Or..just possibly..it is that now, uninterruptedly, our minds and days somewhat quieted, is what will enable us to again hear our excited heartbeat, or feel the butterflies in our stomach or sense the tightening of our bodies? Can we each finally become aware and ready to take notice of what feels good, or right or wrong for us?

Whatever it is, HEAR YOU, LISTEN TO YOU, FOLLOW YOU. Take a breath and within the quiet of these moments take steps to BE YOU and guide YOURSELF every inch of the way.

cAGEd

cAGEd

caged by Dawn Solich

In these pandemic times lack of discipline, half-measures and wanting to be liked can kill us. The new PPE for people over 60 is boundaries.

Remember when we were all in this together? In New York City in the early months of the pandemic we were paralyzed and petrified. We all followed the herd into lockdown, happy to be free of choice as the daily death toll hovered around 1,000 people. As mass refrigeration was organized to hold the bodies, our minds were numb with indecision. We chased information like we used to race through the day.

We slowly emerged as virus theories developed, scientific evidence formed, and safety measures were established. The world started winging its way toward freedom. But Covid-19 rubbed the theory of natural selection in the faces of the older generation and grounded us.

caged by Dawn Solich

If our age has us feeling cAGEd in this pandemic, it’s also what can get us out. We have put in our time in self-knowledge, actualization, and tolerating less bullshit. We have grown a backbone to set limits. If we are to be happy and alive, the simple truth is that we have got to engage with this virus and deal. I’ve realized that since Covid struck I am now firm in what I like to call my Middle Mantra, for most everything. Coming to the middle brings reasonable choices to our values, and beautiful connection to people—albeit messy, and meandering. Unless we are medically-compromised we cannot choose to live in the extreme of being a shut-in. Nor can we avoid reality on the other end with the mask-protesting mob. Assessing our individual risk tolerance and getting boundaried up, beginning from the middle, allows us to connect and survive.

As I’ve been testing my own boundaries I’m learning that even with the potential for dire consequences, the uncomfortable moments, potential disagreements and feeling judged are still absolute. Enforcing boundaries is a weighty practice, but there are big payoffs. Being informed and having a plan lightens the burden.

5 Strategies to Have a Life Right Now if  You’re Over 60

 

1. GOOD EQUIPMENT

Get a good mask for situations that give us a higher chance of infection–like being indoors or in closer proximity to people. N95 masks without valves and surgical masks are still considered to be the most effective. A recent article by AARP gave these tips to determine how effective any mask is:

    1. Pull it tight and hold it up to the sky, if you can see daylight through the mask it’s not as good.
    2. Blow really hard through the mask and if it goes through, that’s not super-protective.

This Forbes article with research conducted by a team at Duke University, from August 9, 2020, is an excellent guide to safe masks.

2. LOOK AT STATISTICS

Assess the infection rate p/100,000 where you are and the potential viral load in a situation, before deciding to say yes. This article by an infectious disease researcher, with a PhD in Microbiology and Immunology, has been my go to since the start of the Corona Virus. She uses a simple formula:

Successful Infection = Exposure to Virus x Time

caged by Dawn Solich

3. BOUNDARIES WITH YOURSELF

Disclaimer: I have abandoned my own rules and chickened out in the moment. Practice and persistence, not perfection.

Doing your research and having a few set promises to yourself will make it easier to judge situations as they come up. This also allows you to make plans and have things to look forward to. Deciding limits in a few areas puts the control back in our hands, rather than just surviving in a swirling world of fuzzy, shifting guidelines.

For example, I’ve decided that when museums open up again in New York that that’s something I can participate in. Since it’s indoor, I will only do it once every month or two and I won’t spend more than a couple hours there. This is where I’ll wear my most protective mask.

I’ve been saving up my inside chits for the times that give me the most fulfillment. That means I no longer get manicures, pedicures or go to the hairstylist often—I now do everything myself! Look at how capable I am! I’ve only been to my hairstylist once, and I was able to minimize my time there because I’ve been coloring my roots myself. So I asked her just to cut my hair, without shampooing or blow-dry.

I take liberty on my early morning walk with Finnley to take my mask off if there is no one down the length of the block. I get comfort in those first scents of the day and of this city that I love. Sometimes I smell the beach (NYC is bordered by two rivers), or the aftermath of an overnight rain, the perfume of flowers on a balcony, or just the indescribable, distinct, mingling smell of New York City. If I see someone up ahead, the mask goes back on.

4. BOUNDARIES WITH OTHERS

What are your rules that others need to abide by if you are going to be in contact with them?  What do you need from them to provide you with reassurance?

When I saw my sons in Denver a couple months ago, I was in a quandary about how to ensure that they weren’t maybe asymptomatic. Their safety measures aren’t as staunch as mine because Denver had a low infection rate at the time, and they are young. A friend suggested I ask them to get tested close to the date that I was arriving, but enough in advance to get the results beforehand. Then I asked them to be more isolated and protected until I got there. Since we only get to see each other every few months, we all felt that it wasn’t too much to ask.

Ok, so here comes the hardest one of all. If you want to get together with someone who may not be as Corona-Cautious as you, you are going to have to find out what the past two weeks have looked like for them. I know—ugh! Plan out ahead of time what you are going to say to be informed. I was having lunch outside with a friend and since masks are off, I needed to know how careful he had been. When we were making plans I brought up my “past” (two weeks), told him why I thought I was safe and able to go, and then asked, “How about you?”

5. BOUNDARY BOOMERANG

Don’t judge others and you won’t care if they judge you. If you’re letting others have their guidelines, there’s a feeling of entitlement to have your own. Aging well means adapting to our environment, not the opinions of others.

The theory of natural selection discounted a lifetime of earned understanding and strength to boost our survival. Mask-Up. Boundary-Up. Live (some) life.

Finding Your “Why”

Finding Your “Why”

Gail Gensler: BDC Manager, BluePrint Certified BDC Manager for a multi point automotive dealership in Miami. Acura Excell certified. Instagram: @boxingprincess22

Finding Your Why by Gail Gensler

“Why?”

It’s a question I get asked a lot; and if you have also embarked on a fitness journey, one I’m sure you’ve gotten as well.

For me, the “whys” usually reference my age, obliquely or otherwise: “Why do you exercise at that intensity? Why do you push yourself so much? Why boxing?” For you, the “whys” may be different, but they will still reference people’s thoughts on your perceived limitations, or judgements. They may ask why you work out when you’re a parent, and in their minds, should be at home. If you don’t have what they see as the “right” type of body for a certain workout, they will ask why that is the activity you choose to pursue. If you are too old, too young, too small, too big, too male or too female, they will ask, “Why?”

I have fashioned my own answer that you’re welcome to borrow: “Why not?”

In this current climate of great uncertainty, I see many people (including myself) on journeys of self-reflection and self-awareness. We are trying to get grounded and have control over ourselves as we certainly cannot control what is going on around us. We don’t need to answer their “whys.” If you know your own “why,” that is enough.

As I have written about in prior posts, I have always been athletic and competitive in nature – not against others, but against myself, knowing that I am achieving my personal best each and every time. There are days I feel like a champ, and days I don’t (and many times, those are the days I have the best workouts because I feel even more compelled to push myself)!

It’s about personal challenges. It’s about growing, improving, thriving in both mind and body. As the saying goes “the body achieves what the mind believes.”

Exercise has obvious benefits. The physical ones are well-documented and proven for longevity, immunity and increased strength (which in turn reduces the chance of injury). For me, personally, exercise is also a self-esteem booster. I feel better when I work out.  I’ve never needed convincing that health needs to be a priority; hence my continued research on anti-aging, supplements, and my incessant archiving of workouts so that I can be creative and not get bored by redundancy.

finding your why

I am blessed to have tremendous longevity in my genes, but I still want all my years to be strong, productive and healthy for myself as well as for my daughter.

With that said, my personal “why” is primarily because I love to have fun! Working out is my adult version of playtime. Listening to great music (my personal preferences are EDM, disco, 80’s and 90’s dance music) gets me dancing during cardio drills and gives me the beat to throw punches and kicks to.

 When I’m sweating it out in a class surrounded by like-minded people, I’m having pure fun. It’s a little reminiscent of my long-ago club days! I immerse myself in the experience, enjoying the strength, endurance and aptitude I have.

Mountain climbers, jumping jacks, burpees are fun too (well, maybe not the burpees), but nothing is better than hitting the boxing bag, feeling my strength and utilizing my hand eye coordination and mind in executing the combinations.

I’m living in my joyful moment. Improving myself, adding meaning and fulfillment to my day all the while being grateful for my energy and abilities, never once thinking about my age! 

My “why” doesn’t have to be your “why,” and boxing doesn’t have to be your go-to workout. But, you owe it to yourself to find a “why” that resonates with you as strongly as mine does for me. Then all the outside “whys” from skeptics won’t matter – you can leave them in the dust, and get back to enjoying your workout!

find your why gail gensler

Gail Gensler is a fitness enthusiast, entrepreneur and influencer based in Florida. She is passionate about sharing her love of fitness, and the benefits of exercise, with all audiences!  You can see more on her Instagram, @boxingprincess22.

Photos by @stellarmediaagency

Hear You, Listen to You, Follow You

Collaboration with @planetbylaureng

I am so excited to announce my collaboration with @planetbylaureng… the cool, edgy fashion brand that epitomizes the Pro-Age Woman.

There’s something for everyone’s personal style… from Age-Less, Size-Less and Season-Less beautiful comfortable pants and leggings..to fresh innovative fantastic oversized sweaters and more. I’d love for you to see for yourself so take a look. I’m sure you’ll agree.

THEIR WHY:

To celebrate the power and beauty in all women. Designed and crafted to inspire confidence & embolden our natural elegance. There’s no one that we’d rather share our planet with…

and that’s all of you…

and by the way… I totally agree…

Let’s Be Visible Again

Let’s Be Visible Again

Sarah Sian is the founder of an online Beauty Community that is pro-age, pro-beauty and pro-women supporting women. Website: https://thebeautyagenteurs.com Instagram: @thebeautyagenteurs

I have 18 years of experience as a writer, editor and brand consultant across beauty, fashion and retail.

I am so lucky to have worked with some amazing brands including Debenhams, L’Oreal, BY TERRY, Perricone and Harrods, to name just a few.

After seeing a rise in ageism, bullying and mental health issues on social media, at work and in relationships, I wanted to create a fun, kind and friendly online space; the goal being to help those affected so that they can start to feel beauty confident again regardless of age, race and gender.

I actually had my own brush with ageism in September 2019 after working as a Beauty Editor for 18 years. The team was getting younger, which I adapted to in a positive way saying “things never stay the same and I accept this” but something wasn’t feeling right. I was excluded from meetings, the team wasn’t talking to me much, etc.etc. It was only a matter of time before they literally shoved me out of the company claiming ‘redundancy’. It was like going through a horrible divorce; having 18 years of amazing times, then a few awful years solely because of my age. I was up and down for weeks, some days I couldn’t get out of bed. Then one day, I decided to turn this awful experience into something positive; so I set up this new and exciting ‘blog-comm’ dedicated to empowering women, especially women who feel they have become invisible after a certain age.

It’s a place that recognizes you…the busy mums on-the-go, entrepreneurs who run successful businesses, nurses who work tirelessly to look after others, visionaries who have fought to keep their ideas alive and single parents who juggle all aspects of life no matter what is thrown at them.

So, instead of feeling invisible after thirtysomething, let’s be visible again with the help of each other. Start wearing glitter eyeshadow, carry off a bold lip and go heavy with the eyeliner…just wear it with confidence. After all, the beauty of beauty is that there are no rules. Beauty is fun; so let’s all be kind and come together through our love of beauty to inspire, encourage and form beautiful new friendships along the way.

let's be visible again by sarah sien

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