Being youthful isn’t about physical appearance, it’s about how you feel. When we think of someone who is youthful, we think of fun and energetic; we think of new experiences and having a lust for life.
Feeling young at heart has so many benefits when it comes to emotional and physical health. Feeling youthful can be a protective factor against stress and stress-related health issues, and is also connected to better health habits.
Anyone can be more youthful, regardless of their age. In this article, I will cover what it means to be youthful, why it is important, and 4 helpful tips for you to be more youthful in your everyday life!
What does it mean to be youthful?
Feeling youthful is a state of mind, combined with how your body feels physically. People who feel youthful usually have more energy for recreational and physical activities. They also feel more free, creative, and open to trying new things.
There are aspects of feeling youthful that are well within our control, such as our attitudes and actions.
However, it is important to note that one’s physical health can play a significant role in feeling younger. For example, if you are struggling with physical health issues it may be tough to feel energetic and free, which are characteristics associated with youthfulness.
Why is being youthful important?
Being youthful has significant benefits for your overall well-being. Research has found that there is a relationship between self-perceived age and cardiovascular death rates. Researchers hypothesize that feeling more youthful leads to better health habits, such as exercising and eating healthy.
When people perceive themselves as old, they may be less likely to engage in physical activity when compared to people who feel more youthful. They may think “I am too old for this” and not engage in a way that a youthful person would.
Another study published by the American Psychological Association found that feeling younger than your biological age could help with the damaging health consequences of stress.
Youthful people may have a more positive outlook on life and be future-oriented, making it easier to cope with stress and lessen the potentially damaging effects it can have.
4 tips to be more youthful
Feeling youthful is something we can strive towards. Sometimes it comes naturally, but in many cases, it can take a conscious effort. So, here are 4 helpful tips for you to feel more youthful in your life.
1. Practice mindfulness
Mindfulness helps you to bring your attention to the present moment. Sometimes when we feel ‘old’ it is because of stress, worrying about the future, or ruminating about the past. Mindfulness helps you to appreciate the present moment, rather than overthinking past regrets or fearing the future.
It also helps to reduce stress, depression, and anxiety while it improves sleep, all of which will help you in feeling more youthful.
Mindfulness does not have to be complicated. In fact, there are probably moments in your life when you’re being mindful without even noticing. Anytime you bring conscious awareness to what you’re experiencing in the present moment, you’re being mindful.
A simple mindfulness exercise you can begin with is the well-known 5 senses exercise. This involves you recognizing what you are experiencing in the present moment, by activating your five senses: sound, sight, touch, taste, and smell.
To do this exercise, ask yourself:
- What are three things I can hear right now? For example, your breath, car sounds coming from outside, or the wind.
- What are three things I can see right now? It can be anything, like a tree, people around you, a chair, or your hands.
- What are three things I can smell right now? This one may be a little tougher, depending on your environment. If you can’t find three things, try for one! For example, the smell of your shirt, the air, or flowers.
- What are three things I can taste right now? This is another tough one, depending on where you are. Again, if you can’t find three things, try for one! For example, your saliva, gum, or food.
This simple exercise brings all your attention to what you are sensing right here, right now. The great part about it is that it is easy, and you can do it anywhere. Give it a try!
2. Find purpose in life
Finding meaning and purpose in something larger than yourself can play a significant role in helping you to feel more youthful. Without meaning, it is easy to give up and have a bleak outlook on life.
Those with meaning in their life are usually happier, have more energy, and have more motivation.
Studies have found that finding meaning in life is a good strategy for thriving later in life because it helps to preserve the person’s physical and mental well-being.
If you feel like your life is lacking meaning and you aren’t sure how to find it, check out our article that includes some of the best tips for finding purpose.
3. Try to laugh
They say laughter is the best medicine, and it holds some truth! Smiling and laughing can make you feel younger!
Studies have found that smiling can improve your mood, lower stress, boost your immune system, lower blood pressure, and even increase your lifespan. Feeling physically and emotionally well are key components of youthfulness.
So, actively seek out things that make you laugh! Whether it’s a funny friend, your favorite comedy show, or spending time with children or pets. Hey, maybe you can try to laugh at yourself some more?
Make a conscious effort to bring more humor into your life and you will be feeling more youthful in no time.
4. Push yourself to try new things
During our youth, we are constantly trying new things. Young people are figuring out themselves in the world, and trying new things is an essential part of that.
Trying new things makes us feel energized and motivated. It keeps life interesting and provides us with a sense of achievement.
You may not even need to try something completely new if that feels too scary. Rekindling an old hobby is another way to make yourself feel refreshed, energized, and youthful.
Some examples of new things to try could be:
- Taking up a new form of art like painting, drawing, or pottery.
- Learning to sew, knit, or crochet.
- Trying a new sport.
- Trying food that you have never had before
- Cook a meal you haven’t cooked before.
- Travel to a new place.
- Volunteer for an organization you care about.
- Read a new book.
The list can go on and on, but hopefully, this helps you find a place to start!
Aging is a natural process that should not be feared! Feeling youthful doesn’t mean you are scared to age, it means you are still excited by life, motivated, energized, and open to new experiences, regardless of your biological age. You can feel young no matter how many candles you have on your cake. Start by trying one of the tips in this article and see how it makes you feel!