Choosing to Be a Positive Aging Advocate

I am no longer used to getting up in the dark. This morning I got up before 6:00 a.m. to attend a Chamber of Commerce meeting. Technically, I am not currently operating a business per se, even though I own a registered business entity. Instead, I consider myself a positive aging advocate. Nonetheless, I think of the business owners at Chamber as part of my audience for the work I am doing.

Originally, I focused just on Baby Boomers who were either preparing for retirement or who wanted more out of their retirement life. I became a certified professional retirement coach last year and planned to limit my scope to addressing the nonfinancial aspects of retirement. But then I started hearing other people’s stories and learning more about the new era of aging that we are entering.

The Need

We can expect to live longer, potentially healthier lives than any generation before us. What getting older meant for previous generations is different for those who are over fifty today.

Some people have no plans to retire because they are enjoying their work. Other people cannot afford to retire. At the same time, many workers over 50 have experienced age discrimination on the job or are forced out of their jobs.

Because the Social Security Administration projects that about a third of people 65 and older will live into their nineties, many of us could have decades yet to live. Younger people could live even longer. With potentially years of living ahead of us, it is clear that we need to be prepared for navigating older age in new ways.

The Focus and Audience

My mission for Boomer Best U is to help people embrace positive aging and to live their best lives now and in the future. As part of this mission, I also educate people about age-discrimination and age-stereotyping because it hurts all of us.

My audience is not limited to baby boomers. The issues that I focus on are ones that affect most people who are 50+.  I also reach out to businesses and community members as a way to encourage positive attitudes about aging and intergenerational engagement. Sadly, few employers facilitate these discussions in the workplace!

The Work

I provide resources on my webpage to support positive aging. Some of those resources include health calculators, planning guides, current research on aging, and monthly newsletters with stories about individuals 50+ who are living their best lives.

I love sharing stories about others who are living their best lives after fifty. That’s why I started a newsletter. I also include other information that helps people prepare for and live their best lives in each newsletter. This month’s issue will focus on encore careers. Also, I often accept contributions and relevant information that I can share with our growing community.

When invited, I’m usually happy to give presentations to different groups about positive aging. In addition, I write a monthly article for an online 50+ women’s magazine and periodically write a guest column about positive aging for my local newspaper. One of my current projects includes writing a chapter for a book someone is writing on aging perspectives.

The Future

As I continue my work as an advocate for positive aging, I do plan to eventually offer workshops and online classes. I am also doing some larger writing projects and plan to have a book ready for publication within the year.

Enjoying Life to the Fullest

What is most important for me is that I do something that I value. I am enjoying my life to the fullest and want to make a difference in the lives of others. I can’t think of anything I’d rather be doing right now.

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