Sounds like a dream come true, right? Well, it is, and it isn't. I happen to be one of those people who continually look like I'm 12. Okay, maybe not 12, but you catch my drift. I chalk most of it up to very good DNA, but it gets embarrassing at times.
For example, I was sitting in a meeting with a bunch of folks and we were all "ooohing" and "aaahing" over someone's baby bump. I was new to the group, and said something about "my two kids" and the group went silent. Silent as in you could hear crickets chirping outside. I wasn't sure why they were all staring at me, until the mother-to-be said, "YOU have two kids? But, you're soooo young." I immediately flushed three shades of red, and very politely said, "Actually I'm not. I'm older than you. And yes, I have two kids."
Unfortunately for me, the ladies proceeded to dissect every inch of me and couldn't stop commenting on how young I looked. I know I should be flattered, but when you're trying to position yourself as an expert in your field, and all people can focus on is your appearance, it gets very annoying.
However, I know I should be quiet, and be just grateful that I'm aging like fine wine. I guess I just wish it could have been doled out to someone who really cares about their appearance. Because I don't. That's not to say I'm a slob, I'm just not very girly.
So when people ask me, how I stay so young looking, I don't really know what to say - because truth be told, I don't really do anything special. But since inquiring minds would like to know, here's my non-glamorous methods for looking younger than I really am.
HOW TO LOOK 12 WHEN YOU'RE REALLY 36...
1.) Smile. A lot.
I love life. It may not always be happy, but I really do love life. I always try to see the glass half-full vs half-empty, and I really believe that everything happens for a reason. It doesn't mean I have to like it, or understand it, but I try to put my faith in a higher power when things get to be too much. I am that annoying optimist that can see a silver lining in every cloud.
2.) Get some sunshine.
I try to go outside each and every day. Even if it means just stepping out the back door for two seconds. The power of natural Vitamin D is amazing. The feeling of sunlight on your face is just sooooo relaxing.
3.) Don't use lots of products.
I don't "do" my hair - ever. I only dye the grays every few months because my sister yells at me. I wash it in the morning and then let it dry naturally. More often than not, it's in a ponytail, or a bun with two pencils because I'm too indifferent to buy hair clips. I very rarely use make-up. And let's be honest here - make-up to me is some loose powder and lip gloss. Maybe some eye shadow if I'm going somewhere special. The only two products I use religiously - and have for years - are Proactive and Oil of Olay (with sunscreen) moisturizer.
4.) Fruits, Vegetables, Fiber & Milk.
In my hometown, there is a beautiful woman whose looks are legendary among those who know her. The best part is that her beauty is natural-looking. If I'm lucky, I'll resemble her when I'm in my 60's. Rumor has it that she drinks a glass of liquid chlorophyll and eats a pear every single afternoon to maintain her youthfulness. Now, I'm not that dedicated, but I do believe in the importance of eating at least one fruit, one vegetable, one glass of milk and a decent amount of fiber every day. (Yes, you should have more fruits & veggies than that, but again, you get my drift.)
Ha! I hate this one. I don't do it very well. Actually, what constitutes exercise is widely debated, but let's just say that I make myself "do something" every single day. Cleaning the house vigorously (think up-and-down our stairs, lots of bending and reaching, etc), walking the dogs, chasing the kids, swimming in the bay, etc. Now compared to my husband, who is an Ironman, my exercise routine is laughable - but the point is - don't just be stagnant. Every little bit counts.
6.) Be silly - every day.
I am a very silly Mom. I love to play with my kids. I love to dress up in costumes with them. I even let my daughter put all of her barettes in my wildebeest hair. Sometimes I even answer the door with the clips in my hair. I sing songs to them - badly. I change all of the lyrics to their favorite songs - and sing songs about them instead. I'm a fool.
I do not do yoga, or pilates. But each morning, I take a very long shower - and think - and ponder - and reflect. As I go through my bathing routine, I map out my day and pick out 3 things that I need to do before I go to bed. In reality, there's probably 20 things that I should do each day, but by giving myself a short list, I know I will be able to accomplish it. It's realistic and it makes me feel better about my day. And if I'm sick, I only give myself 1 thing to do. ;)
8.) Have faith in something or someone.
I am not here to preach religion to anyone, but I do find that my faith provides me a great deal of comfort each day. It doesn't always mean that God and I are getting along, but I know that I can talk to Him whenever I need to - without the fear of judgement. If you're not a God-seeking person, that's fine, but find something to believe in; it'll give you more purpose.
I wish I had some profound advice to give you all, but that's it. I try to use common sense, and I never buy into fad diets, or extremism in any way. I believe that a happy life is all about balance - and I guess it's working. I'll let you know if I ever look older than 12.
Stay young my friends,
P.S. I know some of the pictures used are not the best quality. However, they are actual Instagram pics that I've posted on my personal account. In using them, I thought I would share my "real life" versus staging a gaw-ge-ous photo shoot of myself. ;)