Caring for Your Mind, Body and Spirit as You Grow Older
Even as you stew over aging’s negative aspects, you can also come to realize some of the advantages it brings. As you consider the following possibilities for keeping body, mind, and spirit fit, remember that these are not separate parts of you but the essential ingredients of a whole person. You can’t work on one aspect and ignore the others. What’s good for one benefits the others.
Care for your body
The first thing we notice as we age is that our bodies cease to be dependable machines. Like cars with high mileage, they need a lot of maintenance, and our “body mechanics” have medical degrees instead of grease racks. Seeing your family physician, eye doctor, and dentist regularly can help to detect unsuspected threats.
Keep your mind sharp
Losing mental abilities is perhaps our deepest fear. None of us wants to fall victim to Alzheimer’s or to lose vital blood circulation in our brains. We worry every time we experience a “senior moment.” Make use of the skills you have. Check the magazine racks for puzzles: crosswords and word searches, logic and math teasers. Play memory games. Make a list of words or numbers and memorize them, repeating them after an hour. After all, exercise strengthens the mind just as it does the body.
Flex your spiritual muscles
Deepen your prayer life. Read and reflect on scripture. Try a form of prayer that is new to you, such as centering prayer or some other form of meditation. Search your memory for times when you felt closest to God or gained a new insight into your faith, and offer thanks for those moments.
Growing old is as much a part of our journey toward God as being born was. All the gifts with which we were born came from God, and God wants us to make the most of these gifts as long as we live. Your efforts to stay fit in mind, body, and spirit as you age are surely pleasing to God.
Excerpt from Caring for Your Mind, Body and Spirit as You Grow Older from One Caring Place