Older citizens are receiving more and more attention as their numbers increase. There is ample evidence that older people – those over the age of 65 are more numerous, spontaneous, more fit, and have more to offer than at any time in the past. Today many well-known politicians, businessmen, entertainers, and artists are continuing to work and to contribute to society well beyond the usual age of retirement.
From the time you are born, your behavior and your attitudes are influenced to a greater or lesser degree by the rules and attitudes of the society in which you live. As you reach an age where old age emotional changes occur where you feel that you live in an age and a society that is obsessed with youths, in which old age is associated with chronic disease, and being old is “unfashionable,” unattractive, and at a time even frightening.
Senior Citizen Emotional Problems – a place in the society
Television, newspapers, and magazines endorse this blinkered view by constantly celebrating the vigor, beauty, success, and sexual prowess of youth, and by portraying the elderly as pathetic and neglected. You might, unknowingly, contribute to this attitude and provoke indifference on the part of younger generations by not making an effort to get to know and understand them, or by not managing your affairs as best you can.
The traditional roles of the elderly have been greatly undermined in Western industrialized nations. In non-industrialized societies, elderly people often continue to be active members of their communities, which in turn benefit from their skills and abilities. Yet in the West you are frequently considered obsolete unproductive – a burden to society – something most old people are at pains not is. Far from being venerated, the “village elders” can become the community’s cast-offs, euphemistically dismissed as “senior citizens”.
Young and old can often bridge the generation gap with consummate ease. Grandfather and grandson find no difficulty in communicating, or in sharing pursuits and pastimes such as fishing. It should be possible to extend this sharing and caring attitude to the elderly across all sectors of society, both inside and outside the family.
How Do You Treat The Elderly?
If your answers to the questions below reveal a negative attitude, consider whether these actions make sense in relation to you or to older people that you know well. When you treat people as stereotypes, you lose opportunities for close relationships. Young and old share the basic human needs for warmth, understanding, support, dignity, and companionship.
Do you:•Avoid elderly people?
• Believe they can’t make reasonable decisions?
• Show impatience?
• Overprotect them by withholding information about health or other matters?
• Talk over their heads?
• Make allowance for their age and mobility?
• Seek their advice?
• React enthusiastically to their plans?
• Involve them in your activities?
A Positive Attitude in Older Age
• As you grow older, it is important to recognize, and come to terms with, the unavoidable physical effects of aging. At the same time, beware of negative expectations about aging, as they might limit your own ability to find satisfaction in the later years.
• In aging, as throughout your life, it is very important to keep active and stay interested in the world around you, and to find supportive and challenging contexts in which to promote continued personal growth and obtain fulfilment. For this reason, many people consider planning for retirement to be a life-long pursuit. Fortunately, older people maintain independent and active lives in the community.
• Anxiety and depression can occur at any age, but remember, they are reversible. The incidence of total incapacity in the elderly population is surprisingly small and, since most old people continue to function efficiently to the end – albeit in a lower gear – everyone should look for fresh ways of gaining both experience and achievement in the later years.
• Too many people fall into the trap of viewing old age as a waiting room for death. They gradually become what society expects them to be – sedentary and submissive. Instead of falling into unnecessary decline, you must take up the challenge of retirement.
• Well-integrated older people capitalize on the advantage of a long life – knowledge, experience, wisdom, memories – and find that this help to compensate for the gradual physiological changes. Such people turn these later years into an Indian summer of joy and achievement. For them, after a full life, death intervenes as Leonardo da Vinci believed it should: as sleep comes after a hard day’s work.
Mental Fitness Tips for Older People
• Earning for a living is not a lifestyle. Engage in a healthy lifestyle, involve in some hobby like gardening, fishing, indoor games etc.
• Don’t work on your weakness. You know your strength, utilize that in some constructive work
• Don’t stay at home always. Plan something to do; even at home, you can start many things.
• Setting fresh objectives to achieve boost mental strength, and eliminate fatigue
• See what people are talking about, listen to television news, documentaries, inspiring stories
• Don’t depend on others and pity yourself. Present yourself as a positive image. Create a purpose to live.
• Maintain a dignified personality, and not subservient.