A question many “Baby Boomers” are asking

A question many “Baby Boomers” are asking

Where did everyone go?

By Joanne R Kanute, BCMCLS, CSA

     Have you ever caught yourself thinking, where did everyone go? Then you pause for a minute to think about it: co-worker comradery is no longer a part of your daily routine, you are now retired. Parenting responsibilities are no longer, the kids are grown and gone. (Now they are telling you what to do.) Your kids have formed their own routines, careers, families and schedules; they don’t have time to fit you into their schedule. Friends; many of your friends have retired and moved out of the area to be closer to their families or sadly, some have passed away.

If you plan to survive loneliness; you need to stay active; socially & physically. Though you are retired, one should continue to set goals for yourself. Without goals it is far too easy to pass things off until tomorrow. Make your physical goals: specific, realistic and important to you.

1. Identify Your Starting Point – think about your typical weekday and weekend day; pick activities that are comfortable and enjoying to you.

2. Figure Out Your Fitness Level – keep track of how much you exercise or are physically active.

3. Set Short-term goals – this will help you make physical activity a regular part of your daily life.

4. Long-term goals – once you establish your short-term goals, focus on where you want to be in a year or so on.

5. Write an exercise plan – write the what, when, where and how much to your physical/exercise plan. Be specific and realistic.

Remaining socially active is very important to your physical and mental health. One may have to stretch themselves out of their comfort zone to meet new friends and find things of interest. Many ask how and where can I meet new people, make new friends in my later years. Here are a few suggestions of how to move on and get past that lonely feeling and bring purpose back into your life:

1. Learn to become more self-sufficient – don’t be afraid to give something a try, being self-sufficient increases your self-esteem.

2. Hobbies – having a hobby not only passes time but it also gives you something to share with others.

3. Join a group – find a group that has many of the same interests that you have.

4. Volunteer – there are many organizations that rely on volunteers to function but also help a neighbor.

5. Get out of the house everyday – even if that means getting outside and sitting on the porch, push yourself out of those four walls.

6. Challenge your mind – do crossword puzzles, jigsaw puzzles, take a class to learn something new.

7. Journal – journaling is the new word for diary! Write down your feelings, your thoughts, and your goals.

8. Physical exercise – if you have an organized exercise plan it gives you something to look forward to. If you join others to exercise, it provides you with some social interaction.

9. Seek help – it’s okay to connect with a life coach, counselor, physiatrist; that is not a sign of weakness or that you’re crazy! Sometimes we need a little push to get us going on the right path to a fuller lifestyle.

One must be a friend and then you will gain many friends. Be a person others want to be around, a positive upbeat person is more fun to be with than one who is continually negative. There is more to life than “doctors’ appointments”, aches and pains, spread your wings! Sitting back and waiting for something to change or improve is not going to happen without some effort on your part. There is always a chance of rejection when you reach out to someone, expect it and don’t take it personal. Take responsibility for your life; don’t wait for someone else to fix it for you!

In today’s society we must be our own greatest advocate! Don’t be afraid to express your feelings or concerns to your family, doctor or friends; it’s always good to talk with others, you gain another perspective to issues.

 

To contact Joanne for coaching or speaking services please call:

Aging with Distinction at 520-405-6787

or go to: www.agingwithdistinction.com

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