As a busy executive, you are constantly on the go, both physically and mentally, but something is different. Once you hit 50, the changes that you had previously heard of and hopefully prepared for are no longer on the horizon. They have arrived.
For better or worse, these changes affect both your mind and your body. Here’s a look at what to expect during this banner decade. Take heart, it’s not all bad. You are in the driver’s seat when it comes to achieving your best health over 50.
1. Major Changes Ahead
Signs of aging include positive notes, such as gaining wisdom and life experience. Negative age-related changes for busy executives are most often seen as the skeletal system breaks down, muscle mass decreases, vision and hearing loss occur, the metabolism slows and the immune system weakens. The organs and systems of the body decline at a greater rate as you enter your 50s.
Your heart slows down and weakens with age. The arteries become stiffer, putting you at higher risk for cardiopulmonary disease. Blood flow, muscle mass, organ function and the immune system all experience decline. Your heart is working hard around the clock to keep you going. Fast food lunches and a sedentary lifestyle are not doing your ticker any favors.
2. Nodding Off
In a business setting, a body that is slowing down can result in severe consequences, including reduced productivity. And while it is never easy to admit that you can’t do what you once did when you first joined the executive world, it is vital to be aware of the ensuing changes and inevitable transformations as you enter a new realm of health over 50.
When you aren’t getting enough quality rest, cognitive function declines. This applies to both the mind and body. Quantity and quality of sleep suffer if not properly addressed during this phase of life. Sleep might not seem like an integral part of being a top performer in the executive realm. But the reality is that getting quality sleep is essential to proper cognitive function, disease prevention and increase your overall energy and productivity levels.
If you feel that you don’t have time to sleep, you will end up losing countless hours of productivity to exhaustion, illness, and lack of mental clarity instead. Logging adequate hours of sleep (at least six to seven hours per night) and sleeping well are essential to maintaining great health over 50.
Here you have some tips:
– Leave work at work, and let your home be the place you relax and unwind.
– Dim the lights and cool the temperature about an hour before your intended bedtime. Use a sleep mask to wake up energized and refreshed.
– The office emails can wait; eliminate screen time from phones, tablets, TVs and other backlit devices at least two hours before you plan to sleep.
– Diffuse relaxing essential oils, such as lavender, to signal the body that it is time to unwind.
3. Inconveniently Embarrassing
Men are likely to battle erectile dysfunction, which can be paralyzing beyond the bedroom. Women can feel the effects of menopause, including hot flashes, stress, nausea and weight gain. Urinary incontinence is a pervasive problem for older executives regardless of gender. Yet, many busy executives fail to heed these realities and never make the appropriate changes to their lifestyle. Denying the existence of the issues only makes them worse.
4. Cluttered Schedule Equals Cluttered Mind
In your 50s, keeping a schedule that is jam-packed from morning to evening with stressful activities can lead to serious health problems and mental as well as physical fatigue.
Here you have some tips:
– Cut out those working lunches and take time for yourself during your lunch break.
– Leave time between meetings for reflection and stress-relieving techniques or exercise. Start unplugging to get more things done now!
– Make sure that you are keeping a pace that will keep you from burnout and away from the hospital.
– Build relaxing times of enjoyable activities or hobbies into your schedule.
No matter where you are on your journey to better health over 50, you will no doubt notice changes in your body as you age. Some might be barely perceptible while others may seem quite dramatic. The rate at which these changes occur as well as the damage they inflict is due in part to hormonal changes as well as genetics.
However, you can take an active role in determining how you will look and feel as you enter your 50s. Just because you have a family history of diabetes or heart disease does not mean that your fate is sealed. Step up, own your health over 50.
Feel free to ask questions or leave comments to encourage others on their journey to achieving their best health over 50.