Beliefnet

One thing women dread is getting older. With society focusing on youth and the youth culture the pressure mounts to defy the process. It is not only self-esteem that is on the line for some ladies. The aging stigma infiltrates main street, corporate America, and Hollywood, where you hit the age of 40 age, you’re not relevant, or can’t hack it.

Actress Cameron Diaz was constantly asked about turning the big 40. Interviewers asked her if she was afraid of facing her next birthday, she was 39, at the time. She wrote aboutaging in The Longevity Book, and realized:

“How freighted we all are of getting older. But the funny thing is these people who were suggesting that I’d reached my expiration at an age when I feel pretty great were actually doing me a favor. As women we are routinely shamed for aging. We are made to feel like getting older and especially looking older, is a personal failure.”

Diaz shared that the book was not meant to be an anti-aging book to focus on how to look younger, but why we do, how it affects women, and what can we do. She traveled across the country interviewing experts who specialize in aging, and found there are new discoveries on the horizon. Women are in denial and “as though we should somehow be immune to the passage of time.”

Diaz is right, we need to take this head on, and face aging. That is where we begin—facing the inevitable—growing older. Things are out of place, skin is sagging, and thinning hair is becoming more of the norm lately. We need to come to a place of acceptance that we are AGING. Confronting this head-on is the best way.

Once you can accept that we all will go through it, it will make you feel better. You can choose to let go of controlling looks. We can get injections, and work to improve ourselves, but we need to change our mindset. Confidence has a natural glow on its own inside and out. Work and appreciate on what you do have, not what you are lacking when you look in the mirror. Revise your style with a new color or haircut. Stylist and fashion expert Gretta Monahan covers fashion trends, food and relationships.

She shared with CNN there needs to be a change mentally first by being the best you can be. "Don't do anything with the idea that you're trying to look younger—that can cause big missteps in your sense of style and how you maintain your beauty routine.”

 Growing gracefully also means you don’t shun style, or sit in a rocking chair. Challenge yourself with new hobbies, adventures, and to look at life with fresh eyes. Volunteer and share your talents. Finding meaningful things to do will alleviate depression as well. Ask yourself what can I do to make an impact on others around me? Actress Goldie Hawn: “What helps with aging is serious cognition - thinking and understanding. You have to truly grasp that everybody ages. Everybody dies. There is no turning back the clock. So the question in life becomes: What are you going to do while you're here?”

Get to basics. Exercise, eat better, and do yoga. Yoga is good for the body and mind. It can lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety help maintain flexibility. Doing a yoga practice according to the Yoga Journals can “potentially helping to prevent major health crises like heart disease and strokes—are matched by an equal number of benefits that are less tangible. Yoga sharpens the mind, helps cultivate acceptance, hones discipline, and fortifies a sense of self.”

Keep up with your skin routine. Use retinoid, sunscreen, and make sure to get a deep poor cleansing to keep skin healthy. Retinoid is recommended by dermatologists for its vitamin A, which helps with fine lines. Prevention reported: “It's also been shown to work wonders on acne. In other words, one retinol-based product may effectively be able to take on the role of your brightener, line-smoother, and texture-refiner and blemish blaster.”

Finally, make time with friends, this is simple, but research shows that being a part of a community is good for the immune system.

Instead of hiding we need to have a celebration of each other and take on aging with a different attitude. No more being embarrassed by our age!

Said Diaz: “Let’s push the midlife crises of a bridge and throw a party instead.”

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