Interview: Dr. Donna Perillo.
Dr. Donna Perillo, DC, CNS, NMD; creator of “Arthriticise for Low Back and Neck Pain,” “Decrease Stress and Anxiety in 21 Days,” the “Habits of Healing” podcast—and now, author of Unstoppable Women Over 50: Rekindle Your Passion, Health, and Vitality.
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Women over 50 are UNSTOPPABLE! At least they can be. The truth is, life after 50 is where life really begins. It’s where we can experience the most joy, and love, and passion, and . . . leave a legacy! “Unstoppable Women over 50” can help you unlock your passion, dreams, and desires. One of the secrets is to stop listening to the lies the world is telling us. There is an old narrative and archaic dogma that the media and marketers and traditions tell us . . . that life is over, and you should retire! But not the Unstoppable Women.
By age 50 most women have gone through menopause or are in perimenopause. Unwelcome changes begin like sagging skin, wrinkles, gray hair, age spots, weight gain, stooped posture, arthritis, and many other dreaded changes. In many cases these changes tend to lower a women’s self-esteem and confidence and create a “not so good feeling” for them. I have seen it happen over and over again, and even as I age, I can see how those changes can affect one’s mindset.
Unlike puberty when hormones run rampant, menopause tends to decrease hormones and create outrageous imbalances. Symptoms are different for everyone, but many women suffer with hot flashes, mood swings, anxiety, depression, and decreased sex drive, just to name a few. The latter is not only attributed to hormonal changes but also to a distorted self-image and a lack of “feeling sexy.” Loss of self-esteem and purpose also contributes to negative feelings and doubts about self-worth. Women start to question what purpose they have and what value they can give at their age.
Priorities and goals are very different once midlife begins. Many things that seemed important in the early years are no longer as important or significant and, or relevant. And things that were not important are now of utmost importance or significance.
Challenges also change as we age. Dealing with the loss of a parent or parents, a spouse, a child or someone near and dear becomes a common part of life. One may be subjected to other horrible events like watching a loved one die, taking care of an aging parent or family member, dealing with cancer, dementia or any illness. Loss is not easy, and everyone deals with it differently. But one thing for sure, it does change YOU.
Also, by age 50 many women have their own health challenges and issues. One in three women get some form of cancer, while autoimmune disease and Alzheimer’s Disease are on the rise. Many women have joint disease, stiffness, and a decrease in mobility. Let’s not forget the number of hip, knee, and shoulder replacements that are performed every year!
However, there are some positive realities, too. By the age of 50, most women have achieved many of the goals they had in their 20s and 30s. If they have raised a family, their children are usually less demanding of their time, and they begin to have more “ME” time. The big question becomes, what will they do with that time? It’s been years since they were able to explore their interests and passions and do the things that they really want to do!
In researching for my book, Unstoppable Women Over 50: Rekindle Your Passion, Health, and Vitality, I interviewed over 100 women. My goal was to find out what their major goals, passions, priorities—and challenges were. There was one main theme for everyone.
Can you guess what the number one goal was for almost every woman? HEALTH. And the number one health issue? WEIGHT. By far, these are the biggest challenges for most people in the United States, and that is why it is a billion-dollar business and growing.
Other issues varied like being in a loving sexual relationship, having someone to grow old with, financial security, traveling, making sure family and loved ones were taken care of. Other passions included: writing a book, playing piano, taking dancing classes, woodworking, and other creative activities! Traveling with family and friends, spending quality time with children and grandchildren, enjoying activities like golf, pickleball, knitting, and ceramics were also popular interests.
When I dug deeper and asked why these things are important NOW, I started to get to the nitty-gritty. What are their true beliefs and values, and do they align with their passions or interests? What drives them, motivates them, and makes them tick? Who are they now? Are they the same person they were when they were 10, 20 or 30 years ago? Probably (and hopefully!) not. Did they want to be the same person? Wouldn’t they think that all of those years of experience had made them smarter and wiser? And didn’t they want to be able to share that wisdom with their family and friends and maybe the world? Do they really want to just roll over and wait to die? For their sake, I hope not, and as it turns out, most do not.
I do think that some women need some guidance when navigating these sometimes challenging golden years, and hopefully Unstoppable Women Over 50 can help them begin, or in some cases, continue to mature the process of self-actualization. Older people have so much to offer and give to the world and the people who matter most to them in their lives. They shouldn’t allow anyone to tell them differently. They still have a lot of life to live and it should be spent fulfilling their dreams!
In this book, I share ways to overcome many of these challenges: how to find your passion, how to feel sexy, how to deal with sickness and loss, how to reignite health and vitality to your existence, and how to have a purpose and vigor for life. It is devoted to those women who want to harness their experience and wisdom in order to achieve final goals and dreams, and in doing so, creating a legacy that leaves them feeling that the world will be left in a better place.
Four Strategies to Become Unstoppable!
- Sleep. One extra hour of sleep at night can boost your libido as much as 14%.
- Health. If you want to be keep or increase vitality, maintain a healthy weight and BMI. If you cannot do it alone, seek a professional, get a fitness trainer, and/or find a nutritionist to get you on the right track.
- Yoga. Yoga not only decreases your stress level, but it also increases your sex drive and mobility. By the way, for those of you who use ambulation as an excuse, there is chair yoga!
- Visualization. spend at least 15-20 minutes a day visualizing your bucket list as if it is a done deal. Another creative outlet could be to create vision boards. No matter how you implement this tip, be sure to visualize all of the positive things you would like to bring into your life until you can feel it and believe it!
Available for Interviews: Dr. Donna Perillo
Dr. Donna Perillo is DC, MS, NMD, CNS, is the owner and director of the Chiropractic Healing Center of NJ, a wellness center incorporating chiropractic, physical therapy, acupuncture, nutrition, and stress management. Her goal is to help her patients create a happy, healthy and vibrant lifestyle by addressing their physical, emotional, and nutritional needs.
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