Live Your Best Life by Practicing This

Almost anyone can benefit from it, but a lot of people don’t recognize its value. It is free, but it often involves some effort to develop and retain it. Live a Longer, More Active Life This particular attribute is also associated with greater longevity. One study even suggested the people who nurture this are 11-15% more likely to “live longer overall.” Research suggests that older people who have this attribute develop fewer difficulties with tasks of daily living and mobility problems than their less optimistic peers. So, not only could we live longer but live better as a result of…

Continue Reading Live Your Best Life by Practicing This

Aging Realities: Knowledge is Power

Sometimes living in denial is easier than accepting reality. It took me a while to realize I wasn’t going to be “forever young.” I suspect that being in a state of denial is why research suggests a whole lot of people don’t adequately prepare financially, physically, or emotionally for the realities of getting older. But the truth is, all of us are getting older. Thankfully, I was initially pushed a bit to prepare. However, as I started educating myself about the realities of not only retirement but of aging, I became pretty motivated to start taking steps towards my best…

Continue Reading Aging Realities: Knowledge is Power

Lifestyle, Aging, Gender & Alzheimer’s Disease

When we were younger, it was easier to convince ourselves that we were invincible. Some of us could push ourselves hard and feel like we could make up for lost sleep on the weekends. We could gorge on holiday foods and then drop extra weight by increasing our exercise and dieting for a short period. We could even enjoy a second glass of wine and handle it without question. But then, something changed. Aging and Gender As we are all aware, our bodies (and our metabolism) start changing after fifty. As we move into middle age and beyond, we also…

Continue Reading Lifestyle, Aging, Gender & Alzheimer’s Disease

“Elderly” is Not a Neutral Term

Shame on Writers Who Refer to Us as Elderly I’m truly tired of seeing headlines that refer to active, older adults as “elderly.” Even the style guide for the American Medical Association now recommends against using that pejorative term. Recently, I saw an article that Time.com ran using the term “elderly” to describe a seventy-five-year-old protester. Other publications referred to the protester as “older.” I contacted the editors at Time magazine about the recent article describing a protester as elderly.  I mentioned that the style guide for the American Medical Association advised against using the term “elderly” because it stereotyped groups…

Continue Reading “Elderly” is Not a Neutral Term

1968 and 2020: A Boomer Perspective

In a 2018 article, the Washington Post described it as “the year the center did not hold” and the year “many Americans saw their country spinning out of control. It was a shocking time, a moment of danger, destruction, and division—yet also a time of passion and possibility." It was also the year the Beatles released their top hit, “Hey Jude.” We Have a Valuable Perspective1968 was one of the most difficult years in American history and one that forever changed our country. For those of us who remember 1968 and/or the challenging years that followed, we have a unique…

Continue Reading 1968 and 2020: A Boomer Perspective

Racial Injustice: Protesting as an Older White Woman

During the past several days, I’ve seen images of young people all over the country protesting racial injustice and the brutal death of George Floyd. As an older female who remembers the 1960s, I’ve witnessed a lifetime of racism.  But until recently, I did not recognize the extent of my own “white privilege.” When a group of individuals organized a silent protest in my community, I knew that I needed to take a stand. Those with Hope and Those with Little I never thought much about enjoying certain privileges because I was born white. I grew up as a hard-scrabble,…

Continue Reading Racial Injustice: Protesting as an Older White Woman

Long-term Care: Do You Have a Plan?

When our mother’s overall physical and mental health deteriorated to the point that she needed constant care, we were able to find a comfortable assisted living facility for her because she had some financial resources—at least enough for about two-years. But when our mother’s resources were gone, she had to leave her assisted living facility. Our mother was distressed when she had to move from a nice facility that had become her home. Because my sisters and I were not in a position to take care of her, we had to explore her options. Fortunately, her financial situation and her…

Continue Reading Long-term Care: Do You Have a Plan?

Health-Span and Environment

Numerous studies have indicated that where we live affects our longevity. Our environment can also affect the number of years we live free of major chronic conditions (our health-span). One study suggests that most people will live about 20% of their lives with chronic conditions but that lifestyle can influence the number of healthy years we enjoy.  Our activity levels, our social engagement, our overall environment, availability of fresh food, and our access to healthcare are some of the factors that influence health-span. However, even if we lengthen our health-span, it is inevitable (unless we experience sudden death) that we…

Continue Reading Health-Span and Environment

Think Like a Tree, Age Strong, and Stand Firm

Deadwood: Attitudes toward Older Adults The World Health Organization reports that ageism – age discrimination and stereotyping is the most prevalent form of prejudice in the world today. It also reports that ageism has adverse effects on our health and well-being. In the Public Domain: COVID-19 has peeled back long-held cultural attitudes about aging and older people. Even the Lt. Governor of Texas suggested that old people or “grandparents” wouldn’t mind sacrificing themselves for the good of the economy.  Of course, we do know that older people in nursing homes and poorer people – particularly poorer people of color—have been…

Continue Reading Think Like a Tree, Age Strong, and Stand Firm

Bullying and Age Discrimination: Fighting Back

In some ways, bullying and age-discrimination feel very similar. When I was a child, I felt powerless when bullied. But now when I feel bullied as a result of age-discrimination, I fight back; I know that I have power and am willing to use it. Growing up, kids at school could plainly see that I was different. My mother routinely cut my hair with kitchen scissors and I wore Good Will clothes and durable shoes that my grandmother might have worn. The harder I tried to become invisible, the more obvious a target I was for bullies. Sometimes the bullying…

Continue Reading Bullying and Age Discrimination: Fighting Back