By “definition,” a super-ager does most things right as it pertains to living a healthy, happy, long life. For instance, they exercise regularly, they eat right (for the most part), and they surround themselves with loved ones and stimulating/fulfilling activities and interests.

On top of that, they use their brains . . . actually, they really push their brains.

Brain research has found that the areas of the brain that are considered “emotional,” such as the regions of the limbic system, are major hubs for general communication throughout the brain. The thicker these regions of cortex are, the better a person’s performance on tests of memory and attention.

So which activities, if any, will increase your chances of remaining mentally sharp into old age? Well, the best answer, according to the research, is to work hard at something. Whether the effort is physical or mental, you can help keep these regions of the brain thick and healthy through vigorous exercise and bouts of strenuous mental effort. And when you tire of the effort or feel discomfort, that’s the time to push past the temporary unpleasantness. Brain tissue gets thinner from disuse, so remember: If you don’t use it, you lose it!

One last thing, and this is a big one and possibly the most difficult, is to choose your words carefully. Really, no kidding.

Our self-talk is extraordinarily powerful, and often, it is so habitual that we’re not fully conscious of the negative, or positive, effect it has on our lives or our bodies.

Women are especially good at tearing ourselves down for not being thin enough, smart enough, assertive enough, brave enough, young enough, and “insert any other judgment here” enough from your personal stash.

So before we speak or think or listen to or write another negative word, consider this from the book “Within” by Dr. Habib Sadeghi.

“We’ve learned that everything in the universe is energy in different states of vibration. Therefore, everything has its own frequency, like a guitar string that is plucked and creates a specific musical note. We also know that words have very powerful vibrations based on how they make us feel. This is why it’s so important to not only be conscious of the words we choose when affirming our good, but to become aware of how we casually use words to sabotage ourselves.”  

So the next time you almost say something like “I’m too fat, too old, too slow, remember that every cell of your body is listening. Like mom used to say, “If you can’t say anything nice (about yourself included), don’t say anything at all.”

I don’t know about you, but I find all of this pretty exciting – especially the “words” thing. Just think how much control you can have on your overall well-being by simply watching your words, whether it’s your own self-talk, or the words you read or listen to.

OK, fellow Super Agers. Let’s do this. Move your body now, feed your body well, work that brain hard, and whisper “sweet everythings” into your own ear every single day.

Are you with me?

Till next time,

Judy