Rob’s Reflections: 12 Steps to a Long Life

By Robert Claridge

Hi everyone,

I’ve just blinked and January has become April!  Time only moves in one direction and it appears it’s in a hurry.  I don’t know about you, but I’ve got lots that I still want to achieve, and I need a bit of time to ensure that I get it all done.  Therefore, I’m going to have to do my best to live a long and healthy life.  Who’s with me?

In researching our new HEALTH AUDIT, which helps you align your habits with those of the healthiest people in the world, I was reminded of the importance of the key habits required for a long and healthy life.  The following are a few, in no specific order, that we all need to be practising.

1. DON’T OVEREAT

Consuming less calories from quality foods equals better body composition, less disease and longer lifespan.

2. NIBBLE NUTS & SEEDS

Given the spectrum of nutrients that nuts and seeds provide it is no surprise that they are linked to longevity.

3. SPICE UP YOUR LIFE

Not only will eating spices make your meals taste better, but their high antioxidant properties have been shown to protect you against an array of chronic diseases.

4. EAT A RAINBOW

Colourful fruits and vegetables, preferably in season, give us the broadest micronutrient exposure and all the benefits that come from such.

5. EXERCISE EVERY DAY

Whether it’s cardio, resistance or flexibility orientated, all forms of exercise – when completed regularly – will give you a longer health span.

6. FLOSS FASTIDIOUSLY

The bacteria in your mouth, if allowed to prosper, can cause systemic inflammation. They are also strongly linked to heart disease.

7. DON’T RETIRE

This doesn’t mean you have to work until you die.  Simply have a daily purpose that keeps your mind and body stimulated.  Whether it’s gardening, volunteering, or pursuing a hobby with passion – keep living your life with intention and your life will be long and full!

8. PUT THE SPOTLIGHT ON SLEEP

Instead of reducing sleep to get more done, prioritize sleep so that you are more energetic, efficient and long living.

9. PRIORITIZE YOUR HAPPINESS

Find something that makes you happy and do it regularly.  The most proven way of achieving this is to help others and practise gratefulness.

10. MAINTAIN HEALTHY SOCIAL NETWORKS

Humans feel best when they share their lives with others. It is true that a load shared is a load halved! Avoid isolation and keep regular meaningful contact with others.  It is interesting that ultimate punishment in the prison system is solitary confinement.

11. PRACTISE MINDFULNESS

Being present will help you really take stock of your current situation.  From this you can learn from your mistakes, reset accordingly and grow.

12. BE CONSCIENTIOUS

According to Friedman and Martin, in their book the Longevity Project, “being prudent, persistent and well organized is the strongest personality predictor of longevity.”

I hope you will reflect on these factors and make an effort to improve those that you feel are applicable to you.  You govern your own destiny and, when it’s all said and done, action speaks louder than words!

On a final note, the earlier you apply these healthy habits, the sooner you will benefit from them.  If you are interested in learning more, or in helping those you care for become more informed, we are holding the first of our community presentations  – A LIFE WELL LIVED – The Growing Years – on Wednesday 18th April at 7pm.  On the night, one our team members, Emma Wisbey, (just back from a national speaking tour), will talk about the secrets of setting up a great life. She will examine the years from childhood to early adulthood.  If you would like to listen to Emma or know someone who you think would benefit from her wisdom, please give us a call on 5221 8220.

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