Last month we covered the topic of Ageism and how society’s view of getting older can create obstacles for those of us who are re-imagining a new stage of life. This month I would like to challenge all of us to stop looking at the perceptions and attitudes of those around us, but rather to look at aging from the inside out.
How can we turn those negative stereotypes and predictions into an incredible opportunity for change and growth?
The encore movement and longevity revolution has begun to outline the silver lining of putting our experience and talent to work in meaningful ways while enjoying these bonus decades of life. Boomers are the second largest generation with over 10,000 adults turning 65 every day. This means a WHOLE lot of us can truly reshape the norms, policies, practices and outlook for retirement, work and living in the second half of life! (and for generations to come).
So why is there so much concern about approaching this exciting new stage of life? Some of the comments or questions I continue to hear from folks in mid life:
- How will I fill those bonus decades with meaning and purpose?
- How can I stay healthy throughout this extra period of life?
- How can I continue to earn income or to ensure long term financial security?
Joanne Jenkins, CEO of AARP, (one of my favorite heroes), and author of a national bestselling book, “Disrupt Aging” has done an outstanding job of showing us how to embrace the opportunities of aging and to address some of these internal concerns. “Disrupt Aging” focuses on three key areas: HEALTH, WEALTH AND SELF. Jenkins provides a wonderful narrative of her own journey along with many others who are working to change what it means to age in America and to truly enjoy this next stage of life. The book also provides great tips and programs that will assist us in each of these three areas.
Kerry Hannon, our recent keynote speaker (and another of my favorite heroes), spoke at our annual conference about the importance of having a three part Fitness Plan:
- To be financially fit.
- To be physically fit.
- To be personally, mentally and spiritually fit.
This month, the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies revealed a comprehensive survey of employers and their workers and their attitudes regarding retirement.
The survey showed that Boomers are beginning to take proactive steps to work past 65- starting with the top five steps:
- Staying healthy so I can continue working.
- Performing well at my current job.
- Keeping my job skills up to date.
- Networking and meeting new people.
- Scoping out the employment market and other opportunities available.
In a more recent article by Joanne Jenkins, she talks about the “Four Freedoms of Aging” (taking it right from the playbook of Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1941, during World War II), when he talked about the four freedoms: Freedom of speech, Freedom of worship, Freedom from Want and Freedom from Fear. Joanne challenges all of us to rethink our own beliefs and begin to spark new solutions on how to live and age in America!
Just like in 1941- we need to realize that WE have the freedom to choose the life we want to lead.
- The Freedom to Choose – It is important for you to choose how you want to live your life in the second half; including improving your health!
- Freedom to Earn – We CAN continue to earn income by re-imagining our work and breaking down the institutional and social barriers.
- Freedom to Learn – Learning is critical to our success, whether it be keeping up with new advances in technology or upgrading our job skills or learning to be an entrepreneur.
- Freedom to Pursue Happiness – This is all about discovering and fulfilling your purpose (the heart and soul of the Encore Movement!)
Encore Tampa Bay has decided to make these three important focus areas a major theme for the next 12 months. If we know that health, wealth and self are top of mind for those in mid life, then Encore Tampa Bay is committed to bringing resources and experts to help you answer and deal with these three areas.
We will be offering a series of different events such as:
- “Health, Wealth and Self “speaker series.
- Encore Pathways Showcases offering a variety of options for new pathways.
- Encore Academy sessions that address health, wealth and self.
What are you waiting for? Let us acknowledge and embrace this positive side of aging!!
Check our Resources and Programs tab learn about all these events and more!