Sometimes I sit down to write a blog and the topic is there with me ready to go. Today it is not. The Muses have been playing with me lately. They must know that I have nothing on my agenda for today and was hoping to be inspired and finish editing a chapter or two in the “Mapping the Space” book. But first I must find the Muses.
My body and my mind seem to be running slow today. I might be a 6 on the Sharp scale, a 6 or 7 on the Happy scale, and about the same on the Independent scale even though I have the day to myself to decide what to do. The Fit scale ought to be higher. I did tap dancing Monday evening and Yoga yesterday morning. Truth is I feel stiff and sore and kind of dull. So a 5 on the Fit scale. The Trusting scale is still higher – 8 or 9. I do believe the world is unfolding as it should. SHIFT is happening just at a slower pace these days.
I have been reading the “French Women Don’t …” series of books and enjoying the notes on aging gacefully and staying healthy as we age. Over this past year there seems to be this obvious perhaps culturally motvated choice in front of me. I can either give up the work and “enjoy” life or I can continue to work and miss the exciting moments that I get to spend with my family when my schedule reads “available” and someone needs a hand. More and more people my age are questioning that either/or thinking and opting for both.
Mireille Guiliano, the author of “French Women Don’t …” talks about four anchors. For her, good health, a social network, employment as well as time and commitment to your own needs are the four things that keep her going and aging with style and attitude. I can see how these four fit nicely with the SHIFT measures of well being … a Sharp Mind, a Happy Heart, an Independent Spirit, a Fit Body and a Trusting Soul.
I was struck by the idea that employment is important and I understand that completely. You really do need something to do that you enjoy and accomplishments that you are proud of as you move through life at any age. Giving that up seems counter productive even if the money doesn’t seem as important. People need to feel needed and appreciated. They need a sense of contribution and connection to community. Some find new careers or volunteer. Without it we put our mental, relational, physical, emotional and even spiritual well being at risk.
I will always be engaged in writing and other projects that interest me and keep me moving. These projects serve my need for employment. There is always lots to do and learn. Now that curling season is coming to an end I have rediscovered Yoga. There is a studio or two that are even closer than the curling rink in my walkable neighbourhood. Both serve my good health and social network needs. My family and friends are wonderful. They keep me socially engaged and ’employed’ if you can take that to mean ‘busy’. As for time for my own needs …. I have all day today to tend to those.
Take good care. I plan to. That way I will not only age gracefully but fiercely and with wild abandon the way I have always aged since I was a child. Aging is not an option if you want to stick around and see what happens next. How you age is up to you. SHIFT and enjoy.