Let’s get right to the point. There are three issues around ‘retirement’ I find not only annoying, but totally disturbing. The first is the use of the term retirement. It is outdated. It doesn’t accurately represent what happens after a person exits their primary working years to ‘what’s next’ in life. The second issue is there is no guidance on how to create a personalized plan for the’ what’s next’ stage of life. There are many books on how to financially prepare and how to negotiate the forests of Medicare and Social Security, but I am talking about how to create YOUR personal plan for exploring the opportunities YOU are interested in pursuing in this next stage of life.
And the third issue (and probably not the final one) is the lack of shared knowledge on how to prevent (during our 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s) many of the aging issues that currently impact the super seniors, those eighty and older. The conversation around aging is starting to change. Thought leaders including Jo Ann Jenkins, Marc Agronin, Marc Freedman and Cheryl Richardson are providing us with current facts and insights about just how aging has changed dramatically from even a decade ago and how to thrive during our extended midlife. However, in my conversations with my peers, this information is not widely known. The pro-aging movement needs to ramp it up. That is where this blog and you get involved.
Let’s Retire the Term Retirement
Reading the definition of retirement in the Concise Oxford Dictionary is enough to send me into total despair.
- Retire –1. Withdraw, go away, retreat, seek seclusions or shelter, recede, go to bed (from the world, become reclusive; into oneself, be uncommunicative or unsociable).
There is nothing positive and upbeat about the word. The term retirement, as applied today, simply doesn’t align with the mindset, events and opportunities available when we leave full-time work to explore ‘what’s next’ in life. It may have worked when it was coined during the sixties but not now. I personally think calling the end of our life stage as full-time employees or workers retirement is such an outdated term. It implies decline. It conjures up images of rocking chairs and nursing homes and depression. Transitioning from our years of work, careers, and/or professions to exploring the next stage of our lives should be called something more descriptive of this time period. And much more positive.
Supporting the Continuum of Aging Process
Dr. Marc Agronin (The End of Old Age) tells us that depression and the factors leading to depression increase during the super seniors stage of our lives (those eighty plus). In our nation the fastest growing age group is people over eighty and the second fastest is people over 100. (2016 Economic Longevity Report).
I read both Marc’s book and the longevity report. I came to this conclusion. If we each create a personalized plan, one I am calling The Silver Gap Plan, we could be much better prepared for our more advanced years, while purposefully enjoying our extended midlife. We need to look at our strengths, return to our earlier dreams, and create new ones. The Silver Gap Plan shares with you what that process looks likes and exactly how to create YOUR own journey. Join me weekly to learn more, share your thoughts and insights, and get involved in the pro-aging movement.
Thought question for the week: What do you think the current view of aging is in our nation? What ageist experiences have you personally encountered? (Like racism, sexism, gender bias, religious intolerance, and hate crimes, anti-aging slurs, comments, and prejudices need to stop.)
Rules of Engagement
This blog is a place for civilized dialogue. Please respect the viewpoints of those posting comments and be respectful of varying views. Let’s have fun, share experiences, and create solutions.