Host: Valerie Hatcher
Duration: 16 min
In this second part of our What Happens After 50 series Valerie, explores the emotional and health journey of life after 50. She touches on the emotional shifts, from feelings of liberation to grief, as well as the pivotal health priorities we should focus on. Valerie shares her personal experiences and introduces the idea of holistic wellness, encompassing physical, mental, and social health. Valerie also shares her biweekly health hack, the benefits of meditation, and how it can be incorporated into your daily routine.
- Embrace the emotional journey after 50 – there can be liberation, confidence, grief, and joy of wisdom.
- Health after 50 should focus on overall wellness, not just battling illness.
- Meditation can reduce stress, improve memory, enhance emotional health, and improve sleep. It’s a simple practice you can incorporate into your life with just a few minutes each day.
- Don’t assume every symptom or ailment is age-related. Listen to your body and seek medical advice when needed.
- Staying active and maintaining social connections are vital for healthy aging.
Connect with Valerie:
- Facebook and Instagram @iamvaleriehatcher.
- Email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Join Us Next Time:
Stay tuned for more inspiring chats, tips, and stories about the midlife journey. Subscribe on your favorite platform so you never miss an episode! See you soon as we age with grace, style, and a touch of sass.
[00:22] Valerie Hatcher: Hey there, beautiful ladies, and welcome back to our Aging with Grace and Style podcast. I'm your host, Valerie Hatcher, and I'm excited to embark on yet another enlightening journey with you. Now, last time in the first part of our series, we dived deep into the realm of what to expect after 50, discussing transformative physical changes that come with this beautiful age. We talked about the shift in our metabolism, the natural evolution of our skin and hair, and ways to embrace those changes. Now, today, we're going to explore some uncharted territory of the post 50 landscape, focusing not just on our bodies, but our minds and our souls as well. Our topics include the emotional journey that often unfolds in this new chapter of life, as well as the pivotal health priorities that we should be placing at the forefront. So as we navigate this conversation, my hope is that we not only learn together, but also celebrate the aging journey with all its twists, turns, challenges, and triumphs. So grab your favorite cup of coffee or tea or whatever drink that you have and you want to have at this time and get comfortable. And hey, let's dive in. Now, before we venture into our main topic, it's time for our biweekly health hack. Today, we're focusing on a practice that can bring significant benefits to both our bodies and our minds. It's meditation. Now, you may have heard the term meditation before, but do you really know what it means? It's more than just sitting quietly. It's a practice that helps us cultivate inner peace and enhance our well being. I remember I used to think meditation was that I had to sit still in a place and my hands had to be up or in prayer mode, and I had to be still and quiet. Well, still and quiet don't always work for me. And so I stayed away from meditation until finally I learned a little bit more and thought, you know what? Why don't I try it? And it's crazy because it's what you make it to be and what's going to work for you. But actually, science has shown us that meditation can have numerous benefits, especially for those of us over 50. It can help to reduce stress, improve memory, enhance emotional health, and even assist us with better sleep, something that can really become elusive as we age. At times, I struggle with insomnia, and when I have those moments, I put on a guided meditation and my earplugs, and the next thing I know, y'all, it's morning. It knocks me out. But there are also many days when I start my work day off with meditation in addition to my daily devotional. So you can incorporate meditation into your life. It doesn't have to be complicated or even time consuming. You can start with just five minutes a day, focusing on your breath and letting your thoughts come and go without judgment. There are so many resources that are available to help you and to practice meditation. They're mobile apps like Calm or Headspace, and they provide guided meditations that are tailored to different needs. I actually use the Insight timer or the Peloton app for my meditations, and I'll link them in the show notes. But meditation is like a muscle the more we use it, the stronger it becomes. So why not give it a try? It could really be your secret tool for enhancing your overall well being in this chapter of life. Now, let's start our journey. Turning 50 can take us on an emotional journey one often overlooked in our youth focused society. So let's talk about these emotional shifts, the good and the challenging. And remember, you're not alone on this journey. First, many experience what's called a liberation. The societal pressures that weighed us down in our younger years start to lift. We gain this newfound freedom to be ourselves unapologetically. And we might find courage and joy. But for others, there's a sense of loss. It could stem from children leaving home or a career winding down. I know this lady, Susan, who was a dedicated professional for over 25 years. And when she retired, she suddenly found herself feeling aimless and lost. But then she found a new purpose. She started volunteering at a local community center. It brought her satisfaction that she never expected, and it reminded her that she was more than just her professional identity. Then there's the confidence that can bloom after 50. It's a feeling of finally being comfortable in our own skin and knowing who we are. I don't know if you've experienced this, but I have. It reminds me of a conversation I had, really, with a total stranger one day in a doctor's office. He told me that for years he worried about how others perceived him. But when he turned 50, it's like something clicked. He decided to care less about what others thought and prioritize his own happiness. He told me that this mindset just really changed his outlook. Now we also need to discuss grief and sadness. Some of us might have to say goodbye to loved ones, which can be incredibly painful. This is also a part of our emotional journey. It's okay to grieve, to take time, to heal, and it's perfectly fine to seek help in navigating these feelings. And lastly, there's the joy of wisdom. There's a certain delight in knowing that we don't have to have all the answers, but we have the wisdom from our experiences to guide us. So are you somebody who maybe in the past had a fear of making mistakes? There are people who stifle themselves because they're afraid of getting or doing something wrong. But what happens if we look at that differently, if we look at those mistakes as lessons learned? The wisdom from this can actually bring forth, like, a new piece. That might sound a little deep, but I actually believe it's true. This journey is deeply personal and unique to each of us. There are ups and downs, but that's what makes it great. Remember, it's perfectly okay to feel a whirlwind of emotions. Embrace them. It's a testament to how rich your life is when it comes to prioritizing our health after 50. It's all about embracing a holistic approach. This isn't just about battling illness. It's about promoting overall wellness. Now let's break it down. So our physical health, our bodies are our homes. And just like any home, regular maintenance is key. But there's something that's often overlooked. Not every symptom we experience is just because we're getting older. I'm sure we've all had that ache and pain or twinge, and we just brush it off as we're just getting older. When I had my hip pain and I kept thinking, I'm sure it's just age. And then comes to find out I actually needed a hip replacement surgery. So we must listen to our bodies and never shy away from seeking medical advice. This makes me think of a friend who started experiencing persistent fatigue. A lot of people told her it was just part of aging. Girl, you just getting older. But fortunately, she decided to get checked. She was actually diagnosed with hypothyroidism, which is a treatable condition. But by speaking up, she took control of her health. So if something is persistent, it doesn't go away. Don't just assume that it's age related. Get it checked out now. Next is fitness. Now, we've talked about fitness before. In other episodes, we've talked about staying active. But you know what? Staying active is more than just keeping fit. It's a vital part of healthy aging. There's actually movement, or let me say, there's joy in movement. I think that with all the people who would like to move and can't, it's important that we realize and we appreciate the fact that we actually can move. So mental health mental health isn't a taboo. It's a vital part of our overall health. And we must normalize seeking help. If we feel we are experiencing depression, then reach out to a professional. With the right help, we can find our way back to joy. I can't say this enough, it's okay to not be okay. And seeking help is a strength. It's not a weakness. And then finally, let's talk about social health. Now, did you know that loneliness can be harmful to your health? Staying connected, it doesn't have to be a grand gesture. You don't have to have everybody to the house every day and have a party. It could be as simple as a phone call to an old friend, or maybe a walk with a neighbor, or standing out in front of the yard and chatting with a neighbor, or even playing with a pet. So I'm not one who wants to visit every day. I don't even want to talk on the phone every day. But I definitely value my friendships being proactive about our health isn't just about preventing illness. It's about enhancing our quality of life. It's about thriving, not just surviving. So as we continue our journey after 50, let's remember to celebrate our health in all its dimensions. Now, before we wrap up, let's address a question that we received from one of our listeners. Brenda from Wisconsin asks, I've been hearing a lot about the benefits of meditation for older adults, but I've never done it before, and I'm not even sure where to start. Any tips? That's a good question, Brenda. So first, I want you to know that it's never too late to start meditation. Remember, it's not about doing it right, but it's about taking a moment for yourself, focusing on your breath and simply just being present. You don't need any special equipment. All you need is a quiet space where you feel comfortable. You can start with short periods of time, like five minutes a day, and there are many resources available to guide you. As we discussed earlier in our Health Hack, apps like Home or Headspace, as well as Insight Timer, the Peloton app and I think there's even now meditation on the Apple workouts app. They all have beginner friendly, guided meditations. Local community centers and libraries might also offer meditation classes too, so you might want to check into them. Remember, like any skill, it might feel a little bit strange at first. I know it did for me, but with consistent practice, it can become a natural part of your routine. I encourage you to try it and see how it impacts your overall well being. But thanks for the question, Brenda. And if any of our other listeners have questions or comments, please don't hesitate to send them in. And that brings us to the end of today's episode. We've journeyed together through the often unexplored emotional landscape that blossoms after 50, uncovering both as challenges and as treasures. We've also highlighted the crucial health priorities that should be at the forefront of our minds. Remember, it's not just about preventing illness, but about promoting overall wellness and thriving in this stage of life. I hope that today's conversation has provided some valuable insights and tools that you can use to navigate this chapter of life. And remember, our Health Hack and Brenda's question why not give meditation a try? It can be a game changer in enhancing your well being and introducing you to a new level of peace and tranquility. Thank you for joining me today. I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's topic, any questions you might have or even your own experiences, feel free to share them with me on our social platforms at I am Valerie Hatcher. Or email me at email@example.com. Remember, this is not just my podcast, it's our journey together. In our next episode, we'll continue the series and we're going to dive even deeper into the realities and opportunities of life after 50. Trust me, you don't want to miss it. Now, don't forget to share and subscribe so you don't miss our Tuesday Five to Thrive episodes, where I share five quick tips that are relevant to us. Until next time, keep embracing the journey of aging, not as a challenge, but as an adventure. You're not just growing older, but you're also growing wiser and more beautiful. And always remember that together we're aging with grace, style and a touch of staff. See you next time.