Tag Archives: confidence

AGEISM? WHAT DOES IT MEAN? WHO DOES IT AFFECT? HOW DOES IT MANIFEST?

I raise up my voice—not so I can shout, but so that those without a voice can be heard… we cannot succeed when half of us are held back.

Malala Yousafzai

Women’s Radio Station

I am delighted that Fit Fabulous & 50+ has been given a slot on Women’s Radio Station.  Our first podcast will be on the subject of ageism. I hope you will enjoy listening and get involved by leaving a comment and letting me know your thoughts and feelings. Also please contact the radio station and give your feedback in order that we can know how best to serve our community of women after 50.

Ageism?

Today I want to talk about ageism. What does it mean? Who does it affect? And how does it manifest in our language, attitudes and beliefs?

Ageism is stereotyping and discrimination against individuals or groups based on age.
Stereotyping?

I would argue that unlike more obvious forms of stereotyping such as racism and sexism, ageism is more resistant to change because it is so ingrained in our ideology that it is rarely challenged or acknowledged. Words such as elderly, frail, past it, over the hill and decrepit diminish the value of older adults. Ageist terms should be as unacceptable as racist or sexist ones!

Even older individuals themselves are sometimes guilty of using ageist language and therefore ageism becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. How many times have you heard an older person say, ‘I’m having a senior moment’!

Researchers have analysed the effects of ageism on society and found that cultures that venerate older generations have less ageism in their language. And as a consequence these groups of older people perform much better in memory tests. They show larger independence, defying ageist assumptions, demonstrating a healthier lifestyle, both mentally and physically.

So how does ageism affect us as women over 50?

I work as an actress and it is my heart’s desire to represent women in a positive light. However women after 50 in America and the UK on television and in film are very rarely presented in a positive light. Older women are often presented as unattractive, bitter, unhappy or unsuccessful. This can have an impact on our self-image, with thoughts of underachievement, ugliness, and disgust.

Why do we feel the need to look younger than our age?

I think the reason some women in my business are obsessed with looking younger is because we are not expected to look our age. We are expected to look younger. When people guess our age correctly it can be seen as some sort of failure. We become fearful of wrinkles, cellulite, or any other signifiers of aging.

Without the visibility and representation of older women who are aging in a healthy, happy and successful way in the media there is an implicit agreement that women never age. The idea that women do not age, and that older women are less attractive, is harmful to all women. By not challenging this we because complicit in the invisibility of older women in the media and consequently set women up to strive for something that is impossible to achieve: eternal youth.

So what can we do to bring about awareness and change?

I would love to hear your comments on how to bring about change and raise awareness on this subject. Let us become acutely aware of patronizing language on both the young, middle aged and older generation. AND let us stop feeling SORRY for older people (like it is some sort of affliction) and start to venerate a long life, experience and knowledge. Let us stay as healthy and vital as possible by learning new skills and keeping our bodies and minds flexible.

Words such as elderly, frail, past it, over the hill and decrepit when talking about age should be as unacceptable as racist or sexist words. I recently became aware of a new phrases: sexpiration date! Apparently referring to somebody who is considered past the date of attractiveness. This is offensive and quite honesty not acceptable in a society that has equality as one of its core values.

We need to kick ass!

Let’s petition, demand, shout and kick ass, to get more older women on our screens. But most importantly let us make peace with the aging process and be happy and proud of our age. And lets stop trying to conform to a standard that does not exist.

Old Souls & Beautiful Hearts!!

Aging is in the mind and in the soul. We often refer to wise people as being, old souls. Well when I grow up I want to be a very OLD soul with a huge heart and a fierce spirit. Join me, have your voice heard, express what is in your soul, and shout as loud as you can. We need to unite, we need to make noise, we need to bring change so that future generations will feel deeply valued and appreciated whatever their age, whatever their sex, whatever their race!! In this year of ‘The Woman’ let us fight for equality across every strata of society. Like Emily Pankhurst, let us stand up for women, of all abilities, cultures and ages.

Please get in touch if you have experienced discrimination because of your age? Or Please get into the conversation if you have a positive experience to share.

And if you have any further questions or comments for ‘Fit, Fabulous & 50+ please get in touch  in the comments box. You can also tweet about us.  Or join us on Facebook or Linkedin. And if you would like to hear more sign up to our newsletter. You are important to us so let us know how we can best serve you and our community of Fit, Fabulous & 50+ women.  Thank you for taking the time to read our blog and wishing you a happy and healthy summer.  Bye for now!  Margaret Tully

 

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How BIG is Your BUT?

How Big is Your But?

January as a month is long, cold and dark!  As we wrap ourselves up and brace the weather there seems to be a general malaise of knuckling-down and getting through. We even have a day called ‘Blue Monday’ purported to be the most depressing day of the year.
Therefore loving New Year but disliking January seems like an oxymoron!

SO WHY IS JANUARY SO GRIM?

January could be viewed as the month we feel the most stress. Financial stress as we deal with our post Christmas bank balance. Physical stress as our body manifest the results of all the excesses from the holiday season. And emotional stress as we see our resolutions and goals fade into a cacophony of buts.

Statistics tell us that the majority will have abandoned their New Year’s Resolution by January 10th.

I would like to rebrand January as the month where we encounter our Buts!

How big is your But?

You see I think there is a trick to setting goals. Firstly, set outrageous ones!! Keep them visible and focus on them at least once a day.

I used to set very realistic goals – I did not want to be disappointed! Then I read ‘Think and Grow Rich’  which taught how to set bigger goals and focus on them every day.  I also learned about the law of diminishing intent!  This law suggests that we loose momentum every seven to ten days – so it is important to factor into your goal setting – motivators every 7 – 10 days. After all it is never really about achieving your goals. The purpose of goals is to have a focus and observe who we become as we move towards them.  The process changes us and keeps us in a state of growth.

The worst enemy to any goal is one very powerful word: ‘BUT’!

So at what point in January did you encounter your But?

I encounter it most January mornings when it is cold and raining and I don’t want to leave my warm bed. I have to make the reason I get up bigger than the warmth and comfort I feel staying in my bed. The bed analogy serves to show the contrast between making effort and staying comfortable. This principal can be applied to any goal we set where we have to exert some effort. It is very easy to opt out and let our self off the hook. The key is to make your goal compelling enough to shift from ‘but’ to ‘I will… I have… I am…’

Here are some of the biggest buts I have come across:

But I am too tired…
But I don’t workout…
But I don’t have the money…
But I’ve tried everything and nothing works…
But I’m just meant to stay this way…
But I don’t like being outside my comfort zone…
But I’m fine just the way I am…
But I don’t like shakes…
But this is my addiction…
But I never went to University…
But I’m too old now…
But I’m too young…
But I’ve got a bad back…

But I love food…
But I can’t until I loose some weight and get fitter…
But it’s not my fault…
But I have kids…
But I’m not interested…
But I don’t have the confidence…
But I’m afraid…
But I can’t wait that long…
But what will people think of me…
But I don’t want to offend anybody…
But I find it really difficult to say no…
But what if I fail…
But what if nobody likes me…
But maybe I should just settle for what is familiar…
But I’m scared…
But what if nobody comes…
But what if nobody likes me…
But what if I upset somebody…
But I won’t know anybody…
But what if they make fun of me…
But this is not my skill set…
But what if I am a success…

We all have BUTs – question is how big is yours? And do you let your BUT control your life?

So if I rebranded January to be the month of BUTs – when we hear it – realize that we are about to have a break-through and find a way of celebrating instead of deliberating. Don’t’ allow the BUTs to defeat us, excuse us or divert us.

Hold the vision up – focus on it and know that tomorrow is another day and decide the New Year and your goals can start any day of the year. Don’t give up on your goals if by January 31st you have not started yet. You will start to move towards your goals when you are ready and once you start laugh your BUT in the face and give it the biggest kick in the BUTT!

Happy New Year! AND Happy New You!  I can tell you now my BUT does not look good in this!

As always I would love to hear from you –
Please share your ‘But’ stories and breakthroughs.
Join the conversation.
Leave a comment! (comment box below of the blog!!)
Share on Facebook, (comment on the blog first please!)
TWEET about us

Shout about us on LindedIn
Forward to a friend     http://www.margarettully.international/blog

As long as we keep the vision we can start/restart at anytime and kick all our buts in the Butt.

One of our goals is to build our community of Fit, Fabulous & 50+ to over 1000 in 2018. I need all of you to get on board and help make this happen by shouting about us.  Please sign up to our newsletter below by just giving your email address:

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7 Ways We Give Away Our Power

Fit, Fabulous & 50+

7 Ways We Give Away Our Power!

 People Pleasing

Inauthenticity

Seeking Approval

Taking Offence

Feeling Superior

Betrayal

Dishonesty/Being Fake

Christmas is nearly here again! A joyous time of year! A time of connecting with friends and family, expressing love and feeling appreciation of all the good things in life!

It is also a time of extreme loneliness and isolation! Fear and anxiety can grip as we struggle financially, physically and emotionally!

This year I enter the holiday season with much sadness! I have lost friends this year! They will stay in my heart forever! Some friends have been taken from me and some have chosen to leave.  Loss is loss, however it comes! It pierces the heart!

This year I have become acutely aware that life is short and it has brought me to a decision.  I am finally coming out of the closet!! Yes, I am not going to pretend anymore!

Friends and family provide a deep and complex reflection of who we think we are! Sometimes they affirm and sometimes they injure; whether it is intentionally or not the pain is the same. It is fierce and it can cut deep!!

Now, being super evolved, aware and spiritual I realise that when I take offence that is my choice. In the past I have taken my offences and placed them on my mantelpiece next to disappointments and frustration. I keep them visible should I need at any time to justify my bad day, feeling down, feeling depressed or angry. Sometimes (more often than not) I get super superior and believe that the person causing the offence would not have behaved in such a manner if they were more conscious, more enlightened and more evolved (like me).

This well constructed philosophy falls down however, when I betray or offend myself. It is a tricky negotiation trying to maintain the moral high ground, against oneself. I believe arguments and grudges provide a convenient distraction from taking a good hard look at our own behaviours and impulses.  We like to blame others rather than own our behaviour!

I did promise to come out of the closet! – stay with me I have one toe out.

Right here goes. I like people and I like having friends, lots of them. I am pretty good at getting rapport and connecting with people, but at what cost? Sometimes, and only sometimes, I exchange my authenticity, with people pleasing, seeking approval and a need for validation for love and connection or my perception of love and connections.  This transaction or bartering renders me dishonest with myself and in my relationships. Out of fear of not being liked I have sometimes pretended to be happy, impressed or amused when the truth is I’m none of these things! I am very good at presenting a version of myself, that I think people will like. I have learned to be funny; agreeable, someone who acquiesces and nods, A LOT.

Thank you, for staying with me – I AM FINALLY OUT! And I mean out, OUT!

So I have made a decision to stop being fake! Strong words I know but such a relief to finally be honest, imperfect and real. I am going to own my power, and I am no longer willing to betray myself any more!   I am cleaning my mantelpiece (love house hold metaphors) and removing all the old excuses. And guess what? If I have betrayed myself with timidity and a need for approval then I have probably betrayed others with dishonesty and inauthenticity. I am probably sitting right now on somebody else’s mantelpiece!

Owning My Power!

I am not afraid to let go of the relationships that drain and deplete energy. I no longer feel the need to negotiate my sense of integrity in order to please another person. I believe that all the love and connection and self-worth I was seeking in others I already possess! Allow me to explain:

We possess the power to love ourself more and more everyday.

We possess the power to accept and love our imperfect self.

We possess the power to take responsibility for our own growth and development.

We possess the power to enjoy life’s journey and love every lesson along the way.

We have the power to let go of any offence and forgive our self for offending others.

We possess the power to feel deep connection with our self, our friends, our family and everyone and everything on this planet.

We have the power to come out of the closet and stay out!

We all have the power to live a free, authentic and courageous life!

If any of this resonates with you, or indeed,  if you disagree we would love to hear your comments. Join our community of Fit, Fabulous and 50+ by subscribing  to our newsletter. We talk about health, goal setting, aging, motivation, gender roles; going after your dreams and much, much more.

You may encounter many defeats, 
but you must not be defeated. 
In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, 
so you can know who you are, 
what you can rise from, 
how you can still come out of it. 

~ Maya Angelou ~

Our community celebrates women who have something to say and who own their power. We need more role models in this world. So please get involved and start by leaving a comment, about how you have taken back your power. Or indeed, you may never have lost it, which is equally enriching. The best conversations take place, in the comment box, which you can find at the top/bottom of this page.

If you have liked what you have read then please give us a shout out by sharing with friends, tweet about us or share on facebook.

As this Christmas season brings us into contact with family and friends let us be grateful for the friends that have touched our hearts and let go of the need to please and cajole. Let us all grow in courage as we speak our truth in love and let go of offences. Happy Christmas everybody, I hope it is a good one!

Dear Margaret Stubbs and Abraham Oswagwo I hope you are resting in peace, you will always hold a place in my heart and I thank you for it!

How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate 
our heroes and she-roes!

~ Maya Angelou ~

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3 Powerful Ways to Increase Confidence & Self Esteem

sophia_loren_lookalike
The most beautiful thing you can wear is CONFIDENCE

Growing Older & Loss of Confidence!

I asked friends on Facebook what were their concerns about getting older? Health issues; concerns over money; as well as loss of confidence were the dominant themes.  Confidence has always been my ally when I want to take on new projects or learn new skills.  That does not mean there is no fear, I acknowledge fear and I allow fear and confidence to exist simultaneously.  I guess that is why I feel confident because I accept that fear exists but it is not in charge, I am.

So What is Confidence and How is it Different from Self-Esteem?

‘Confidence describes how we feel about our ability to perform roles, functions and tasks. Self esteem is how we feel about ourselves, the way we look and the way we think. Whether or not we feel worthy and valued.’   ‘…confident people experience feelings of well being, acceptance of their body and mind and belief in their abilities, skills and experiences.’

I stated that I believe I have confidence but that does not mean that I have never struggled with low self-esteem or lack of confidence!  I do not believe that confidence is a mysterious quality that only some people have.   I believe confidence can be learned, increased and developed. My life and now my career is a quest to increase my confidence and raise self-esteem continually.   So how will I go about this?  I will train myself!  Confidence and Self-Esteem touches of three aspects of who we are:

1.     How we feel about our Appearance
2.     How We Think
3.     Skills & Abilities

Therefore we could increase our confidence and self-esteem by working on these three areas, for example –

Appearance – we all have something we would like to work on regarding our appearance. A simple visit to the hair dressers; making a decision to loose or gain weight. Take that yoga or fitness class. The list could go on and on.   Once you have chosen an area, take massive action.  I have just started spin classes. I want to build stamina and loose some weight. Every time I take the class I focus on the goal!  It feels great because I have taken action and that alone increases my confidence!

How we think – what kind of mind chatter do we have that is disempowering? It will be that one thing you say to yourself when you are feeling low. Negative thoughts are a way of beating ourselves up and keeping us stuck. Mine is that I am too old to pursue my dreams. As soon as that thought comes into my mind I remind myself that I am the perfect age to be doing what I am doing and I reverse the negative self-talk.  I literally replace it with a positive and empowering affirmation.  The more I practice this the quicker my response and the less power I give those negative thoughts until they disappear.  I then congratulate myself for not putting up with any negative people in my life, including myself!

Skills & Abilities  – Search your heart for that one desire that has never gone away. Mine was I want to learn piano, I have said this for years. Well I have now started and it feels amazing. Slowly without judgement I am learning two cord melodies and I love it. I also began my degree when I was 37 and I loved every single minute of it. Best thing I have ever done. I did not worry about resources because I knew once I’d made the decision I would find all the resources I needed and I finished that degree and then went on to do two more.

So you can train yourself to be more confident while increasing your self-esteem!  Let us celebrate who we are by  loving and accepting our appearance and reversing any negative chatter that gives us excuses for not pursuing our dreams and goals.  If you are flying high in these areas then God bless you and please encourage others to go for it too. It is the birthright of everybody?

Please leave a comment in the box below and be an encouragement to others and don’t forget to share, share, share. Let’s keep learning, growing and celebrating!

Let us live with CONFIDENCE, CREATIVITY AND COMPASSION!