As we reach our 60s, many of us find that our social circumstances are changing. Our kids, once the center of our lives, are grown up and are pursuing their own dreams. Our careers are either winding down or changing dramatically. Many of us are dealing with a divorce or separation. As a result, many baby boomers find themselves having to make new friends again for the first time in years.
One of the most important things that I learned from our survey on loneliness is that people who are dealing with loneliness are not starved for interaction – they are starved for intimacy. I don’t mean intimacy in a purely romantic or physical sense.
It’s every parent’s worst nightmare. You’re sitting in your living room, waiting for your child to come home. They’re 5 minutes late. Then 15. Then the panic sets in.
As parents, we wanted to do everything we could to protect our kids from our own imagined fears. If we could have surrounded them in bubble-wrap and assigned them bodyguards, we would have. But, since our kids would never let us get away with that, we did the next best thing. We nagged, bribed, threatened and cajoled them. We told them, in a hundred different ways, “Don’t talk to strangers.” Then, we hoped for the best.
There is a big difference between being alone and being lonely. Being alone is a state of being. Being lonely is a state of mind. The truth is that you don’t need to live with someone in order to have an active and happy social life. At the same time, there is absolutely nothing wrong with looking for love at 60, 70 or 80 years old.
In a previous article, I discussed how to improve your craft skills so that you can get ready to sell your handmade items online. But, once you feel like you have reached a certain level of proficiency, the question still remains – what should you produce?
If you believe the movies, aging is a pretty depressing concept. According to Hollywood, we are like shooting stars – we are born, shine brightly, fall to earth and quickly fade into nothingness. This is one of the reasons that I am so happy that celebrities are starting to speak out on age-related issues.
What is friendship? It’s a harder question than you think. When you think about the phrase “making friends,” what images come into your mind?
It always makes me happy to see people in their 60s, breaking aging stereotypes and living their own way. Well, Reba McEntire, who turns 60 today, definitely fits this description. As one of the most successful music artists of all time, McEntire, “The Queen of Country,” certainly doesn’t need to keep working.
With over 300-million records sold, Elton John, who is 68 today, could be forgiven for retiring from the music scene and “taking it easy.” Well, that’s definitely not his style. In fact, between his live performances, studio efforts and film work, it seems like Elton John is busier than ever.
A dozen years ago, I moved with my husband to Miami. I had done this before, moving to another country because of his job. One more time, we decided, and then we will be ready for retirement.
Who would have known we were going to change our minds? Retirement is really not in our plans yet. That is alright. As long as we feel good about our lives, why change them?