By James Malone
“You are only as old as you feel,” goes the popular saying. Have you ever encountered someone who is approaching or just passed a “milestone,” birthday (40, 50, 60, etc.) and it seems like overnight he or she suddenly appears much older? The reach of the mind in regards to aging might be much more powerful than you suspect.
It is widely known that in less technologically advanced societies that a voodoo priest or medicine man can place a curse on someone which results in illness and sometimes death. The belief system is the mechanism by which this works. If the medicine man is confident in his ability to conjure up the spell and the victim is equally convinced, the victim’s mind makes the unconscious adjustments to alter the body in a negative way. We might find belief in such apparent superstitions to be laughable, but what belief systems do most of us buy into when it comes to getting older?
Basically, most of us expect to become stiff, forgetful and cranky with the passage of years. This message is reinforced by the myriad of pharmaceutical ads we are assaulted with on a daily basis which insist that functional life is not possible in our later life without their costly products. Yet is this true?
Much of what people fear about aging can be averted to a large degree by behaviors which we control. Feeling stiff? Is it age or the fact you don’t exercise on a regular basis? Feeling forgetful? Could it be that spending all of your spare time watching TV is not providing your brain with enough stimulation to remain vibrant and active? And a good mood is the result of taking care of your stress and making the effort to connect with others in a meaningful way.
This is not to say that the aging process is not a reality. Biologists tell us that our cells appear to be programmed with a certain life expectancy. It is also true that youth kind of gives us a pass, at least for awhile, on the consequences of unhealthy behaviors. Nonetheless, your choices as to attitude and behavior will largely determine if your golden years are a pleasant experience or not.
Hypnosis is an effective tool for changing attitude and behavior. If you want to look and feel younger you must first get past the cultural brainwashing that paints a picture of an inevitable decline over which you have no control. There are too many examples of individuals who shined in their later years like Michelangelo who did his best painting in his senior years to accept that idea. Set a positive intention to actually do something constructive along the lines of exercise, diet and proper hydration.
You may also wish to consider learning and practicing some type of mind/body practice like self-hypnosis or meditation to help you control stress. It is well-documented that continual stress creates negative changes in our physiology that can accelerate the aging process. Being able to enter a relaxed state of mind and body on a regular basis can actually reduce the wear and tear on your cells.
The various forms of meditation can enable you to enter this type of restorative state at will. Hypnosis and self-hypnosis have the added advantage in that you can also reprogram the behaviors and attitudes needed for a more youthful state while you relax.
James Malone, DCH, is a Certified Hypnotist from Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey who enjoys helping people overcome their fears and frustrations. He invites you to visit the New Jersey Hypnotist Web Site to learn more.