3. Get moving. Exercise is like Miracle-Gro for your brain and body: It increases cognition, slashes your risk of Alzheimer's, protects your heart, dials down stress, builds muscle, strengthens your bones and boosts your immune system. What's more, brain chemicals called endorphins that are released during exercise yield a powerful feeling of happiness and well-being.
Even if you've never belonged to a gym and your exercise bike functions as a mere extension of your bedroom closet, it's never too late to start building aerobic endurance, muscle strength and balance. Start with a regular walking program; build up to an exercise class or the recumbent bike. Schedule a session with a personal trainer who can show you how to safely use the machines to work on areas that bother you.
4. Pamper yourself. Focus on doing those things that make you feel good about your body. Go ahead, have a massage, facial or body scrub. Schwartz says that such pampering can bring out your sensual side so your body remembers how nice it feels to be touched.
If possible, go for a weekend or longer to a destination spa, where you combine spa treatments with a wide range of activities from golf, hiking and horseback riding to yoga and tai chi. Enjoy the benefits of an overall sense of well-being.
5. Take action. If you think you look better, you feel better. Buying a new outfit, covering the gray or getting Botox to erase the lines in your forehead that make you look angry when you're not, really do boost confidence and self-esteem. So stop judging yourself (and others) and just do whatever makes you feel good.
Week 4: Afford Your Dream. »