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15 Brutal Truths Women In Their 40s Want Women In Their 30s To Know

15 Brutal Truths Women In Their 40s Want Women In Their 30s To Know

I can imagine so many of you nodding your heads as you read this. Anxiety about growing older is understandable. Age is only a number and it happens whether you are prepared for it or not. Knowing these brutal truths earlier prepares you to age more gracefully.

 1. Sleeping with make-up on ages your skin

The make-up layer not only dries out the top layer of the skin, it also prevents the shedding of dead skin. This slows down the normal renewal cycle, resulting in dull and uneven textured skin. The environmental pollutants fastened to the make-up create oxidative stress.  The resulting free radicals can cause your skin to age faster.

 2. Frequent use of stilettos does lead to health problems

When you hit your 40’s, the extended use of high heels and the cramming of your toes into abnormal positions can result in  a variety of ailments, starting with ingrown toenails to irreparable damage to leg tendons. Reserve your stilettos for special occasions only. Stretch and massage your foot afterwards to prevent nerve damage.

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 3. Sleep deprivation adds more wrinkles

If just missing a few nights of sleep leads to sallow skin and puffy eyes, can you imagine the accumulated damage by the time you enter your 40’s? The body releases a stress hormone called cortisol when you don’t sleep enough. High cortisol levels break down collagen, the protein responsible for keeping your skin wrinkle-free.

 4. Always wears sunscreen. Yes, even in winter

When you hit the 40’s and start scrutinizing your wrinkles, you’ll definitely regret not having worn your sunscreen more frequently when younger. Even if you don’t fear skin cancer, year-round application of sunscreen drastically slows the aging of skin due to the ultraviolet rays.

 5. It is indeed harder to lose weight

Just looking at food seems to add pounds as the decades pass. It is easier for women in their 30’s to lose weight. Though it is not impossible, it does get harder as you hit the 40’s since the metabolism does really slow down. If you are overweight, now is the right time to shed those extra pounds. You will definitely reap so many benefits in terms of health, looks and self confidence for the years to come.

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 6. You have to strength train to prevent muscle loss

You can blame this one on the hormones. As estrogen level start declining in the 40’s, other hormonal changes including that of the thyroid, lead to not just increased appetite, but also to loss in overall muscle mass. This increases the chances of gaining weight. Women in their 30’s should start ‘strength training’ to build up muscle, which will help to increase their metabolism and help burn more calories during the day.

 7. You are one beautiful chick

Appreciate how beautiful you are. As you age and you look back at your youthful self, you will realize that you were actually quite good-looking.  Stop agonizing over your pimple, color, height or weight. Enjoy your present. It is indeed a beautiful gift.

 8. Spend quality time with your parents

Though your parents may be quite independent today, they will one day need to be cared for. Have a diplomatic discussion with your parents concerning future living arrangements, health care, funeral wishes and inheritance.

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 9. Speak less and listen more

Really listen and give the other person time to finish their speech. Think it over before answering as people are more apt to listen and value your well thought out reply.

 10. Grow a thicker skin

You should challenge your feelings. If you feel upset with someone’s behavior, it’s high time you stopped letting it stress you out.  Feel pity for them as this actually reflects their inner state, not yours. The world is not going to cater to your sensitivities, so grow a thicker skin and stop take things personally. Don’t let anyone dictate what kind of day you are going to have

 11. Don’t be a people-pleaser

More than being a waste of time, it’s actually damaging. You can’t change or rescue anyone. Accept that it is not your responsibility anyway. Love yourself first. Whether it about getting married or birthing a child, wait until it feels right for you. Don’t feel guilty about not being able to please someone. If you can’t or don’t want to do it, just say NO.

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 12. This is the most advantageous time to have a baby

If becoming a mother is important to you and you have the right man in your life, it is most advisable that you don’t put off having children. Your 30s is the most optimal time for this from a financial and practical view point. As time progresses it may become much more difficult to get pregnant and there are chances of medical complications in such cases.

 13. Save your money, it’ll save you later

Don’t run up your credit cards bills just because you can. You’ll be thankful later when real needs come up. Pensions are extremely important. Buying life insurance young is much cheaper. Focus on becoming financially independent. You should have something of your own.  When you have the means to take care of yourself, you will have more confidence in facing whatever life throws at you.

 14. Focus on yourself and not on a man

Invest in yourself. Make yourself the best you can be. Finish your education or learn a new language. Travel, read, expand your horizons. Focus and maintain your own health – both physically and mentally.

15. Focus on being self sufficient

You must trust in your abilities. You must keep on believing that you have what it takes to make it through. With every obstacle you face in life, you learn so much more about yourself and you will come out much stronger. Be brave.

Featured photo credit: www.flickr.com via flickr.com

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Anju Mobin

Anju is a Certified Nutritionist, and a Highly Experienced Health, Fitness and Nutrition Writer.

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Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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