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Mary Beth is the best massage therapist around.  She understands how to work the aches and pains out of your body.  When I met her I was a complete disbeliever on the concept.  Now I will not live without a massage from her.  I was having significant pain in the muscles in my chest.  After some analysis of watching me sit at work, she determined my body was way out of alignment and the muscles were very twisted.  Six months later, after regular massages, the pain has vanished.  I will not go without my regular massage.

- Larry Marietta

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50 Unplugged: The Value of Balance and Self-care

Posted by: Mary Beth Braun   |   Wednesday, May 11, 2016

As a kid, I remember thinking that when I turned 30, I’d be old!  At 50, somehow, my perspective has changed.  I do know I’m older because suddenly the kids I knew as infants are teenagers or worse yet, in college or married with careers!

With a few more gray hairs, and hopefully more wisdom, I am learning the importance of balance and self-care.  This means realizing the value of the trifecta of good sleep and rest, movement, and eating nutritiously. 

Now that I officially have more in the rear view than in the front window, I’ve learned that sometimes the difference between a good day and a bad one can lie in the decisions I make on what and how much I eat, and how much sleep and exercise I get.

My daily quest for self-care is no longer an option if I want to fulfill my dream of having flexibility and mobility in mind, body, and spirit as I age. If you are like me, you too realize the value of cultivating and maintaining consistent habits in your life that create balance and health.

Cultivating these habits begin with a single action in the area you are willing to work on. For example, you may begin with any one of the following or choose to come up with one of your own:

  • Go to bed at the same time every night.
  • Set your alarm and take 3 deep breaths every hour.
  • Drink more water:  If you drink none, start with one glass; if you already drink some water, add one glass each day.
  • Eat more plants – eat a fruit or vegetable at each meal.
  • Move in any way that makes your body feel better – this doesn’t have to be running a marathon (not that there’s anything wrong with that).
    – maybe go for a walk or do some yoga; or take a new class at the gym – Just move!
  • Every hour send kindness to 3 people (idea from Chade Meng Tan, former Jolly Good Fellow at Google).
  • Spend 5 to 10 minutes in nature, silence, meditation, or prayer each day.

I encourage you to discover what habits you need to do consistently and what habits you need to eliminate to live a healthy and happy existence as you age. The Nike slogan goes: “Just Do It.” – Do, or start doing, whatever it is that will bring you more self-care now.  We’re not guaranteed tomorrow, now is your time.

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