When I ask the members of our community what challenges they are facing, a lack of meaningful friendships and a lack of financial resources are at the top of the list. On the surface, these are different issues, with different causes. But, if you dig a little deeper, they both relate to our changing circumstances.
Baby boomers have always embraced the spirit of travel. In our youth, we understood that it is not the destination, but the journey, that counts. So, we stuck out our thumbs, jumped in our friend’s VW vans, laced up our shoes and set out to explore the world.
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.
If movies, TV shows and magazines are to be believed, turning 60 marks the beginning of a downward spiral towards forgetfulness, dementia and, eventually, death. From this perspective, the brain is a wonderful machine that gets rustier and rustier, until it finally breaks for good. Talk about depressing!
The concept of “retirement” has become deeply ingrained in many aspects of society. Thanks to decades of marketing from financial services companies, not to mention governments around the world, most of us have come to see retirement as an expectation, if not a right.
On the surface, having a retirement age is a fantastic idea. Who could argue with the concept that, after decades in the workforce, people should be able to relax and enjoy the fruits of their labor?
Urban living can be exciting for older men and women but city living can also bring on feelings of isolation and loneliness. It’s true that in a city there is an infrastructure more suited to a less mobile lifestyle usually with a public transportation, parks, museums, and education and entertainment opportunities. But we all know that even in a crowd one can be lonely and so it is important to think about specific ways that an urban dweller can avoid isolation and make the most of living in a city.
Why is losing weight after 50 so tough? It’s a question we all end up asking ourselves at some point. A few years ago, I decided that, when it came to my weight, enough was enough. So, like many boomers, I systematically went through all of my cupboards, removing all of the white bread, biscuits and chocolate. Trust me when I say it was a traumatic experience. I even started drinking green shakes and made my own protein bars, which were surprisingly delicious, after the 137th attempt.
There was just one problem. After months on my new diet, I hadn’t lost any weight.
They say that money talks. Well, if the faces on our U.S. currency are anything to go by, it’s clear that money speaks with a male voice. On the surface, this might seem like a small issue. After all, does it really matter that every single dollar denomination features a male American President or Treasury Secretary?
Well, according to Women on 20s, getting a woman on the $20 bill would be a big deal indeed.
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.