This infographic, especially for us baby-boomers, is a great overview on what one can (or cannot) do as he or she ages. It also provides some great tips for staying healthy as we do age. [Read more…]
My wife and I tried breaking our nightly routine.
I make no claim that swapping pillows is a valiant act of bravado. That does nothing to diminish the reality that it, in fact, was awkward. Not simply “I-normally-don’t–wear–this-color-so-I-feel-like-everyone’s-staring-at-me” unpleasant; it was more akin to “Did-I-forgot-to-zip-something?” anxiety. We tossed, turned, bumped into each other multiple times, and waited twitchily for the arrival of Hypnos, the God of Slumber, only to be jilted on the mattress. After several fidgety hours, reverting to positions of yore, we obtained at last a modicum of shut-eye.
It’s not as if my bride and I, while writing our vows, discussed who would lay claim to which side of the bed.
“Do you, Scott, promise to love, cherish, and support Mary Ann until the end of your days — while swearing to snooze faithfully on the section of bed furthest from the nightstand?”
No, that’s not how it happens. Customs emerge. One moment, it’s an arbitrary behavior, next instant: Habit. Isn’t that how it is?
We set up repetitive behaviors for our ease; then, something alters them.
We are naked, abandoned, and lonely. Without habit’s landmarks, direction is lost; uneasiness swamps us. So, we rush back as quickly as possible, reassured finally by the embrace of the familiar.
You don’t have to look very far to find research that supports that stress leads to serious health problems on down the line – blocked arteries, heart attacks, strokes and even mental health issues. Reality says that there is no way you can avoid stress, so let’s manage it.
Stress and Exercise – Get Moving!
Exercise increases stamina, helps you keep your weight under control, lowers blood pressure and the physical signs of stress like skin problems and wrinkles.
You might be thinking that there is no way you have time during the day to exercise. I bet you could find time if you try something listed below.
- When at work, get up and walk around and/or stretch for two-three minutes every hour.
- Designate time to work out for a few minutes at least 4 times per week.
- Try to get outside for exercise as often as you can. Healthy minimal sun exposure – with appropriate sunscreen naturally increases your body’s levels of Vitamin D.
Stress and Sleep
Good sleep habits are a key to stress management. Sleep deprivation shortens your reaction times in critical situations and increases the effects that stressors have on your normal behavior. Your goal should be to get 6 – 8 hours of sleep every night.
- Refrain from alcohol and caffeine before going to bed.
- Keep your bedroom cooler.
- Don’t underestimate the value that a power nap can have. They’re not just for the kids! Even 15 minutes during the day can increase your productivity.
- A relaxing bath with lavender or vanilla scent prepares you for sleep.
- Writing in a journal before bedtime can get nagging thoughts out of your head before trying to sleep. [Read more…]