Aging: Don’t Retire to Rocking Chair

Aging: Don’t Retire to Rocking Chair.

Aging and Grandparenting: Don’t become inactive and incompetent. They often go together.

Grandparenting

Age and Your Rocking Chair Don’t Rock!!

By Jay Stevens

Your grandparenting “job” is to stay alert, happy, and competent so you can add to the love and enjoyment in your grandkids lives!

Don’t use retirement and that new rocking chair as an excuse for inactivity.

Right?

Slowing down at any age could mean reduced stress and stopping to smell the roses.But it could also mean slowing to the point of doing nothing. Doing nothing is wrong at any age.

In fact, the end results of doing nothing are unhappiness and probable depression.

Many psychologists believe that healthy, middle-aged or elderly adults who retire to the rocking chair have a problem. Often that problem is “learned helplessness.”Learned helplessness starts when, after failures or losses, we lose faith in our own ability to do anything effectively.

This affects both emotions and behavior. We become more withdrawn and apathetic about life in general and pleasure in particular. Although this can happen at any time we feel that we are not in control of our lives, the possibility of developing learned helplessness seems to increase with age–particularly after retirement.

Learned helplessness can, and often does result in depression.

Depression is not the normal grief you feel over the loss of a spouse or a job or the general frustrations and unhappiness life sometimes deals us.

Depression is a sad, energy less state that can last for long periods of time. It isa prolonged and real mental disorder that varies among individuals and needs professional treatment.

There can be another problem with age. Many people assume age equals incompetence.

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Nothing could be further from the truth. The changes that many call natural to aging are unnatural at any age. There is nothing natural about being bored, depressed, or unhappy at any age of stage in life.

However, retiring to the rocking chair and the inactivity that goes with it, can lead to incompetence.

Stay active. Do active things with your grandchildren.

Read, write, do some arithmetic. Keep that mind going with crossword puzzles and other mind activities.

Your grandparenting “job” is to stay alert, happy, and competent so you can add to the love and enjoyment in your grandkids lives!

 

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