It doesn’t seem possible this Motivation Monday marks the first of my forty-fourth year on Earth. Especially since I feel like I only wrote about turning 43 about five minutes ago. But here I am, another year older, thanks to the unstoppable force of time. Each year, I realize it’s one of many unstoppable forces that make up a lifetime.
I think most would agree birthdays present the perfect opportunity for reflection. Reminiscing about the many experiences that will forever define my forty-third year, it was no surprise I found the most defining moments didn’t surround producing any particular shoot for a client or the various business travel delays getting there. The times that will always matter most are the ones spent with family and friends. Of course, not all those occasions can be joyous, especially when saying good bye to those we love who won’t be sharing in another birthday celebration. However, I know each of those experiences gives us some sort of strength that we build upon and take into the next year – and beyond.
I was blessed to spend the weekend celebrating with both my parents. Their love remains one of the strongest beacons in my life and will be no matter how old I get. Meanwhile, this birthday also marked another “first.” This was the third time I started a new year with James by my side, but it marked the first we shared as an engaged couple. Add all the birthday love I received via phone calls, emails, texts and social media posts from family and friends near and far, and the fact that I feel healthier and stronger at 44 than I did at 43…and I know I am one lucky lady!
That doesn’t mean there weren’t a few bumps in the road. Each year, the number of people in my life challenged by attacks on their physical and mental well-being grows. Whether it’s the sudden death of a loved one; a terrible diagnosis; a job lost or financial stress; the end of relationships or other family trouble, things just seem to get more complicated as we get older. In a world filled with so much uncertainty, the one thing I can control year after year is how I take care of my body. Exercising and eating healthy continue to help keep my immune system strong even when events and emotions seem overwhelming. Of course, the other “thing” that continues to work for me is embracing the everything-in-moderation mentality. That’s why I refused to feel zero guilt about all my birthday treats that started on Friday and added up throughout the weekend. Today starts a new week and a chance for me to get back on track with the non-birthday treat regimen.
As I start my new year, I encourage everyone to remember taking control of your health is something anyone can do at any age or fitness level. Don’t be afraid to strike out and try something new. There’s no doubt the road ahead can trip us up at any time. So instead of looking back, let’s use the lessons of the past to move toward the future and all the opportunities to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!
So, as I sail into my birthday weekend on an easy-breezy note, I thought I’d share a few smiles courtesy of my top 10 favorite quotes about getting older. These words of wisdom are good reminders for all of us – yes, that includes me! – that age really is just a number.
- “Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”-Satchel Paige
- “Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been.”-Mark Twain
- “Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty in every age of life really never grows old.”-Franz Kafka
- “Time ripens all things; no man is born wise.”-Miguel de Cervantes
- I promise to keep on living as though I expected to live forever. Nobody grows old by merely living a number of years. People grow old by deserting their ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up wrinkles the soul.”-Douglas MacArthur
- “I speak truth, not so much as I would, but as much as I dare; and I dare a little more, as I grow older.”-Catherine Drinker Bowen
- “The man who views the world at 50 the same as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.”-Muhammad Ali
- “When you are younger you get blamed for crimes you never committed and when you’re older, you begin to get credit for virtues you never possessed. It evens itself out.”-George Santayana
- “You are never too old to be what you might have been.”-George Eliot
- “A birthday is a good time to begin anew: throwing away the old habits, as you would old clothes, and never putting them on again.”-Bronson Alcott
Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend filled with countless who-cares-how-old-your-drivers-license-says-you-are-moments and plenty of chances to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!