There's is no time like the present to get old.
Women are living longer than ever before, so why not live better and healthier than ever before too? Living longer is great but getting older isn’t always easy. This is why it is important to think about your health now and make choices that help you live better later. This course of action to improve the quality of your life at every age is the sense of empowerment to ‘get old’ while being honest about your personal fears.
Whether you’re age 20 or 70, as women we have the power to break through self-imposed and societal limitations related to age. You have the ability to redefine your years by being more active and connected. Learn to engage yourself in your community. But don’t worry; you don’t have to do it alone!
Recently, in my home state of Arizona, leaders met to enhance the opportunities available to older adults at the “Connecting Caring Communities Conference.” The participants recognized that the number of people over age 60 is expected to nearly double in the next 20 years and that we need to find the best ways to serve them. There is an incredible opportunity to impact the lives of these men and women through providing tools and choices for them to better connect to their communities.
Another useful resource is a community in itself, an online one that is. All of us within the EmpowHer community get it. We know the power of sharing our stories and helping each other. Another great community we can link in to is www.getold.com, a program developed by Pfizer. This site challenges all of us to rethink how we ‘get old’ and invites visitors to share their thoughts and provides perspective through the words of others. Women from around the world are chiming in. It supplies the motivation to decide for ourselves how we want to get older without preconceptions and expectations and encourages us to look forward to what’s yet to come.
In an article in titled, “Anxious About Getting Older? Here’s Help!” Dr. Nancy D. O’Reilly reaches out to women in effort to help them cope with fears and concerns about aging and provides a positive outlook and tips on how to flourish in their older years.
In Arizona, family members, neighbors, business owners, nonprofit agencies and local governments are coming together to ensure that all people, are able to contribute to our community as they age.
At the forefront of this movement to encourage people to ‘get old’ and live better is the Maricopa Association of Governments, AARP, Atlantic Philanthropies, Grandmakers in Aging, Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust, the Pfizer Foundation and Partners for Livable Communities. By the end of June there will be a new local website, connect60plus.com, in effort to help individuals and communities redefine the years after 60 and what it means to ‘get old’.
Look for similar efforts in your community. Getting involved and staying active keeps us from feeling "old." After all, getting older is about the number of years we have been here. How we each choose to get old is all about attitude and the right attitude is key to our vitality, our health and making the most of all that life has to offer.
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