Change is inevitable; how we change is not.
Many clients I see are scared of something; mainly of their bodies giving up in some way. ‘My spine is collapsing’ ‘my knees are shot’ ‘I’m falling to bits’ are common things I hear.
This is understandable; partly because we do change with age (in many ways), partly because stuff happens (you wake up with an acutely stiff neck) why? Plus the flippin’ media constantly portraying images of age, decrepitude, victims of life.
When did you last see a positive image of aging?
OK, Prue Leith, Mary Berry, Esme on Sewing Bee and David Attenborough.
But, generally all we hear is deterioration, doom and disability. Not only with the elderly, I see younger clients almost paralysed with fear about an acute attack of back or neck pain.
The other thing I see a lot, as soon as a pain strikes, people stop any exercise they were doing; they don’t moderate they stop. Why? Half the time a bit of gentle exercise would help and won’t do any damage.
For what ever reason we absorb an image of bodies that are fragile, liable to break, wear out, give up, collapse and our lives then do the same thing.
Just reflect for a moment how do you view yourself?
Recently I have had the great pleasure of treating several clients in their mid 80’s; one of them I rechecked their birthdate because I couldn’t believe it was correct. One runs a business, one looks after animals, one has a social life a 20 year old would envy, one is marvellously quirky. What connects them all?
Passion and interest in something outside themselves; they have things to do. Other than nursing themselves or worrying about the future. Ditto Prue Leith et al. They also eat properly i.e cook from scratch and exercise. They are the people we should be hearing about.
Recently I was in a cafe and all I could hear was conversations about poor health, treatments, drugs etc no, I wasn’t earwigging but I guess I do catch these conversations because I am interested.
Obviously, people do need help but…
Change is inevitable; but we have choice in how the change manifests. If we do nothing we will deteriorate, if we do something, minimally we won’t deteriorate so fast, maximally who knows? This doesn’t mean a ferocious exercise regime and lentils for breakfast. It means a belief in the strength, subtlety and awesomeness of your body. Which given half a chance will serve you well. Would you put cheap petrol into a racing car?
So why eat poor quality food?
The pleasure of simple things turning over in bed freely; being able to be outside and garden. Having an interest bordering on an obsession i.e. looking outwards, life is a great thing which we experience through the vehicle of our bodies and minds.
I passionately believe that with some gentle, regular care and attention we can maintain health and strength into old age. It only takes small steps but done regularly will pay dividends. Think compound interest, you are paying into the greatest investment ever