What’s your relationship with wrinkles?
I think I may have a delusional relationship with wrinkles and aging.
You see, I say I’m happy being the age I am and at being at this stage of life. And that’s true in terms of how I feel and the life I am living.
I am even happy with the wrinkles and grey hairs I see in the mirror every day.
But, when I saw some recent new photos I got done for business (which are fantastic photos), one of my first thoughts was ‘Gosh, I look so old.’
I love the pictures themselves but was honestly so shocked by how old I felt I looked.
Where did this critical self-belief come from? It was at such odds with what I tell myself at a conscious level.
I remember the day I first started craving wrinkles
I was around thirty and speaking to a recruitment consultant.
She told me that while I had a really good CV, the one thing that could stand against me was that I looked so young for my age.
For months after that, I’d look into the mirror and willed for wrinkles to appear around my eyes. In the hope that looking my age, would give me more credibility and help me be taken seriously, so I’d get jobs I knew I could do.
Still looking under 18 at 37
People commenting on how much younger I look than my age has been a constant over the years. At thirty-seven I was even asked for ID to buy wine in Asda. I don’t know who was more shocked. Me or the checkout woman who realised her mistake as soon as I burst out laughing and thanked her!
Having this message consistently reinforced by others may well be why I still think I look younger than my age–whether or not this is really still the case.
So why did I react?
The photos are a snapshot of what I look like at this stage of life. I don’t doubt that.
Upon reflection, it’s not my age I reacted to.
Rather, it was the fact that I have far more wrinkles now than my other business images across my website and social media platforms.
That shouldn’t have come as a surprise given they were taken seven years ago.
The fact they were out of date was why I wanted to update them. But it was my much shorter hairstyle that had prompted a new photo shoot rather than the lack of wrinkles.
I only realise now that consistently seeing old photos of me online had keeping my younger look and beliefs alive.
Thanks to Covid, it had also been a while since I’d had photos of me taken close up with make-up. I’m now more used to seeing photos of me on the beach or out for a walk without make-up on.
Being proud of our age, wrinkles and body as we age
Thankfully it only took a few minutes for this conscious catch up to emerge and for me to be proud of my new photos being an authentic expression of who I am–wrinkles and all.
I am proud to be an older woman and want to embrace all my wrinkles and way my body is changing.
Yes, there are days when I know I could look and feel better, but my wrinkles are an expression of the life I have lived.
It’s good to know that George Cluny agrees. He once said, “I love my grey hair and wrinkles. I love the fact that my face has more of an edge and more character than it did when I was in my twenties and thirties. No Botox for me.” (see source below).
Embracing an honest relationship with my wrinkles
I love and celebrate older women. I accept how older women in my life show up and see the beauty in them. It’s time to feel the same about myself too.
I have no intentions of any kind of interventions to minimise my wrinkles–other than drinking lots of water, eating well, getting plenty of sleep, and using natural products on my face.
I’ve definitely let go of my craving for more wrinkles.
I’m also over the shock of realising what I may look like to others rather than the much younger person I feel inside. Gosh now I hear myself sounding more and more like my gran each day.
Going forward I will think of wrinkles as friends I will cherish and enjoy life with.
What is your relationship with your wrinkles?
Often described as one of the most authentic and inspiring souls you can meet, Alisoun is on a mission to improve the lives of 100,000 people–by making it easier for women over forty to feel good, enjoy a meaningful life, and have more impact in the world.
Alisoun’s keynote talks, training, mentoring, and best-selling books Heartatude: The 9 Principles of Heart-Centered Success and Give-to-Profit: How to Grow Your Business by Supporting Charities and Social Causes have favorably changed the good fortune of thousands of people worldwide. She loves helping others, fundraising, and enjoying a quiet life by the beach in Scotland.
Alisoun is has written the following free resources:
- MyEbook: 101+ Ways to Create a Joyful Life of Meaning, Vitality, and Impact Over 40 (click here)
- Ebook: 52 Ways to Raise Funds for Charities and Social Causes Through Your Business (click here)
- Ebook: 101 Ways To Attract Great Clients, With Heart, Integrity & Social Impact (click here)
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