What's Important to You, Youthful or Useful?

Uncategorized Jun 23, 2020

Last week at an online conference, Ken Dychtwald, founder, the Age Wave, gave a presentation on Fatherhood. Ken’s suggestions applied to men and how they could be more active and involved with the younger generations.

The younger people could be your sons and daughters, your grandchildren, or other people’s children. In today’s world, it’s obvious that people younger than us could benefit from the attention. And I add, we could benefit by connecting with them.

Connections like these really apply both genders and solo agers and for grandparents. 

Youthful or Useful

Ken asks the audience, “Do you want to be youthful or useful?”

A good question that makes one think. Which do you choose? 

While many of us put attention on active aging, healthy bodies and minds, anti-aging remedies, what’s needed more is having passion for giving back which could enhance our feeling of usefulness. Being useful adds a deeper sense of worthiness -- something each of us treasure. 

Retirement should not be about relaxation alone. Nor should it be a television "sit-in."

Seniors would gain much benefit by making a difference and helping out younger families who don’t have elders in their lives. Perhaps your own children live far away and you miss the interaction with grandkids. Ken believes there are many families who would enjoy and appreciate having a bond and a relationship with an older person. 

Dychtwald adds, “It’s mostly the women who give back in the older age. Men sit back and relax and get less and less involved in life which isn’t a healthy lifestyle at all.” There’s nothing good that comes from sitting and watching TV. 

I researched stats about volunteering in the U.S. and found a study by the United States Labor of Statistics. The data shows that about one-quarter of Americans, or 25 percent, take the time to volunteer.

So who are these Americans who volunteer?

They tend to be married, white and female, with higher education levels, according to the survey. The largest age group for volunteers was 35-44, the CNCS survey said, and volunteers were most likely to be parents with children under 18. The typical volunteer may live in Utah, which ranked first in the percentage of people who said they volunteered among all 50 states and Washington, DC.

I've come up with a few ideas that seniors can do to share with other families but I'm sure you have some of your own: 

  • Volunteer locally with organizations that feed your soul 
  • Teach children a lobby that you enjoy 
  • Learn a new skill and share what you learned with others 
  • Create a staycation near home and share the experience with a family  
  • Step beyond your comfort zone and meet people of different cultures
  • Grow a vegetable or flower garden with someone 
  • Make new friends and give support to someone in need
  • Visit the local library, senior center or community college and sign up for a class
  • Help a neighbor next door or do a project together
  • Take cooking classes or teach younger families to cook nutritious meals

There are no bounds on what we can do together. Give hope to the younger generation. From what I see, they could use a helping hand or two.  Who knows, maybe you would as well!

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