Boomer Lesson Learned: Work Smart Not Dumb

As you know I work the night shift. My job allows me a lot of time to think. Sometimes I think too much.

I got off work this morning prepared to jump on the computer and do a little research on blogging and shopping tips. Since it was cold outside last night my fingers were a bit numb. I proceeded to sign into Face book but made the mistake of typing in my password incorrectly several times. For you that don’t know, this can be quite an ordeal.

Face book does have TOP SECURITY therefore I had to prove it was me.

I came to a screen stating that I must change all my passwords in the computer to prove that I was ME. A few more clicks and typo mistakes brought on a series of customer service interactions which became a hair pulling experience.

First I tried to change the password of my Internet provider email service. I was unable to locate where to do this. I hit the help sign and had an on line customer service rep. They tried to help me but nothing made any sense. I was getting no where. I then asked for a phone # to call them.

I placed the call to get a recorded message stating all the options which none worked. I then asked for a REAL person to speak with concerning my problem. Unfortunately, for both of us this person had an accent and I could not understand her. Then she had a problem understanding what I needed. After several attempts at communication efforts the rep.was able to fix my password problem.

By this time it was getting late. I was determined to get into Face book. Again I had more things to do to break into Face book to get the password changed. Finally Cyberspace was convinced that I was really me and I arrived at Face book.

It was two hours from the beginning of this ordeal. with my heart beating fast, my eyeballs red, my hands shaking, I MADE IT! What a relief!

Next I found a great site on how to blog. Here it explained that the most important thing in a blog is content with good information for the readers.

Now you must remember at that point I was not even sure who I was or where I was in Cyberspace so I made one short comment about being cold and took my tired self to bed.

Now this is the content of this blog and I hope that it helps you.
First have all your passwords written down in a safe place. Second make sure you are well rested before signing on to your computer. Third learn everything you need to know about blogging before you blog. Fourth learn to work smart which saves time and you will not have to go through all the time consuming trial and error methods that I did to get the JOB DONE. Most important though, DON’T QUIT, KEEP LEARNING, USE YOUR SENSE OF HUMOR!

Originally posted 2010-12-04 02:13:23.

More Older and Happier Ideas

I have been reading a good book titled “Older And Happier!” by Dag Sebastian Ahlander.  He has 109 handy ideas for living life to the fullest. It’s about living the good retirement life from his perspective as a happy old man.

In my previous post, Baby Boomers Get Older and Happier, I covered some of these from the book that I really related to, so I will now share a few more.

More Older and Happier Ideas

1. Resolve Your Feelings of Guilt and Bitterness

Mend your relationships or forget and move on is the idea. Many times there is nothing that can be done. Let it go.

2. Now is the Time to Do All The Things You Have Always Wanted To Do.

As this sign I saw in a window last week says: this is not your practice life. Focus on the possibilities not the challenges. Travel, write a book, start a business, learn something new, the possibilities are endless. Only you can stop you.  Stay engaged and have some fun!

3. Tell Your Life Stories

Write a book, tell your friends, start a blog are all ways to get your Boomer Stories out there. It will be rewarding and fun for you and others also enjoy hearing them. I will always remember Ann and I telling our boomer stories right here on Boomer Places. My walking buddies and I share stories from our lives.

4. Grow Your Gardengrow your garden

There is something very therapeutic and rewarding about growing a garden. When I retired I started two simple 4X4 feet square gardens and grew tomatoes, squash, cucumbers and lettuce. Gives you something to look forward everyday and gets you outside plus rewards you with the bounty!

5. Stops Acting Too Rationally

Not everything needs to be planned out. Be spontaneous once in a while. Do stuff you can do now, before it’s too late. No regrets.

If you are retired like me you probably can relate to each of these. It’s nice to see a few more ideas for positive changes as we age.

Originally posted 2015-02-15 16:47:00.

Boomer Memory Of Strengthened Faith

Boomer memories: A get-away turns dangerous when a Winter storm hits, trapping the girls in their cabin at the top of the mountain. Memories are to be shared and Working Boomer lets up know the rest of the story that she always will remember.

It was late March, a beautiful early spring day, as my friend Lou and I set out for the Ozark Mountains for a much needed get a way. I had received one of those free offers to a resort for two nights and three days as guests to view a vacation community. Since funds were low this was an opportunity that we just could not pass up. The sun was shining bright, the sky was crystal clear as we pulled into the resort entrance where we were met by a Realtor who graciously showed us to our condo. It was much more than we had expected. The view from the balcony looked down on the quaint village nestled at the bottom of the mountain.  It was a dream come true; a place for rest and relaxation, no stress, no worries, no responsibility.  For two gals in their early 30’s it was an escape from reality; a little peace of heaven on earth placed there for our enjoyment.  Yes, 1984 was going to be a good year.

Lou and I were ready! After taking our cooler and bags from the car we jumped into our comfortable pajama pants and long sloppy tee shirts. We tuned into our favorite radio station and brought out our manicuring sets, facial masks, curling irons, chocolate candy bars, chips and soda pop. Of course, Lou had her favorite love story book while I had my mediation and inspirational book to read. Lou flopped down on one couch with her legs hanging over the end as I spread out on the floor with my feet and legs in a chair. After pampering ourselves for a few hours, we decided to go to bed early to get some much needed sleep before our sightseeing trip that we had planned for the next day.

After sleeping for about two hours I woke up to a pounding sound on the window by my bed.  I pulled back the curtains to see sleet, ice and snow falling all around. The driveway was covered in ice and of course we were at the very top of the mountain.  We were iced in a snow storm to be remembered! Old man winter had returned in full force. I awakened Lou.  Immediately she started to panic.  She was crying as fear over took her.  We both were due back to work within two days and could not afford to miss any pay.  I had a fear of driving in bad weather and always avoided it.  After listening to the weather news, we learned the snow was suppose to continue for two days and there was talk of shutting the highways down.  I felt scared, powerless and out of control.

Lou was not into meditation and prayer but I was. I asked if she would pray with me.  She agreed and we held each others hands while I prayed.  A since of peace came over me that words can not even describe. The answer came!

Some how we de-iced the car and I drove it down the steep mountain. We made it to the highway where there were no vehicles in sight. Along the way, we stopped at a gas station for a fill up.  A truck driver asked us if we were crazy for driving in the weather.  I smiled and replied, “ No Sir. There is something more powerful than me behind the wheel of this car.”  We then continued on our way.  It was a fourteen hour drive which in normal conditions would have only taken five hours.  I remained calm during the entire trip.  My fear of driving had been removed.  My faith had been strengthened. We arrived safely back in the big city.  Lou now prays and meditates.  As for me, I have a story.  I have a memory.  It may not have been the escape that we wanted but it was the Gift that we needed.  It was The Power Of Faith and Peace Within.  The Gift was priceless and now it is being shared with you!

Originally posted 2011-02-26 09:11:27.

Boomers Can Defeat Burnout

Boomers are subject to burnout. Burnout is a state of emotional, mental and physical exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. It saps energy and can lead to health problems.

How to Overcome Burnout

In today’s fast paced society with economical insecurities, job, and life style pressures there appears to be many people that are experiencing burnout. Many are striving to hang on to jobs that have become mundane and stressful. Others are without jobs at all. Boomers are finding themselves postponing their retirement because they lack the funds necessary to retire. Some boomers are dealing with elderly parents, struggling to help their grown children, working long hours, and using all the energy that they can find to just stay afloat. Many single boomers are faced with trying to survive on one income and some have taken second jobs in order to live. The pressure is high and very stressful. At an age where boomers should be slowing down, they now find themselves having to speed up in order to deal with life. Many do not even realize that they are experiencing burnout.

Burnout is a state of emotional, mental and physical exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. It saps energy and can lead to health problems. Stress is pressure which can be relieved after getting things under control but burn out is different. Burnout can be caused by the following.

  • Life style changes
  • Expecting to do to much
  • Taking on to much responsibility
  • Not enough sleep
  • Lack of close supportive relationships

When a person is feeling burnout they may feel hopelessness, empty, beyond caring, and lack motivation. They may feel bored, overloaded, unappreciated and have thoughts of wondering if what they do even makes a difference. They may experience doubt and wonder if their will ever be positive changes in their lives. Even when people love what they do they can still experience burn out. Burn out is prominent in health care professionals, stay at home moms, students, social workers, athletes, lawyers, bloggers, ministers, high achievers, perfectionists and those in helping professions.

There is HOPE! Here is a list of things that will help to cope with burnout and rise above.

  1. Start each day with a relaxing ritual. Read the Bible or something inspiring before jumping into your normal morning routine. Take time to meditate. Write and focus on a positive thought.
  2. Allow your muscles to relax. Perform stretching exercises. Listen to pleasant relaxing music. Take time to pamper yourself. You are worth it.
  3. Learn to say no. Set boundaries. Don’t overwhelm yourself. Learn to pace yourself. Know that you are special and treat yourself that way.
  4. Nourish your creative side. Try something new or fun. Perform at least one activity that has nothing to do with work. You are important.
  5. Learn to manage stress. There are many books and articles to read on this subject.
  6. Slow down. Rome was not built in a day. Do not isolate. Surround yourself with kind, understanding, caring people. Share your feelings with a trusted person.

Look at your goals. Are they realistic? Are you neglecting something that is important to you and makes you happy?

8. Take a break!  Turn off the computer, turn off the television, ignore the phone, stop texting, and let yourself enjoy the quiet.  Smell the fresh air.  Listen to the birds sing.  Look at nature.  Play!  Sing at the top of your lungs if you want to do that.  Who cares how it sounds.  Close off the bedroom.  Run around naked if you like.  Feel Free!

Know that you are loved and show it by loving yourself!  You are special and you deserve a good life!

Books for Reading

The Road Less Traveled by Scott Perk. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, Joy of Burnout by Dr. Dina Glouberman,Burn Out by Marcia Mueller,

Originally posted 2011-02-23 10:02:25.

Using Boomer Wisdom To Be Healthy

There are four important parts of the human make up to have a healthy life style: Physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. In my younger years of life my priority focus was on how I looked on the outside. With age comes that wonderful part of our life called WISDOM and a more balanced approach to healthy living.

There are four important parts of the human make up to have a healthy life style and to improve Boomer health: Physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.  In my younger years of life my priority focus was on how I looked on the outside.  My favorite exercise was walking.  Sometimes I would walk at least 5 miles each day either on a treadmill or in the park.  I was constantly dieting, measuring my waistline and switching from one health club to another.  After years of this I realized that there was more than just looking good on the outside in order to be a whole person.

Boomers Should Maintain a Healthy Balance.

Today it is important for Boomers to maintain a healthy balance.  Meditation deepens one’s self awareness and strengthens self esteem and acceptance.  It empties our minds in order to let the good stuff in.  At night I play meditation Cd’s which help me to relax.  I practice slowing down and deep breathing to deal with stress.

Spiritually nourishes us in a deep place, provides us with a sense of meaning and purpose, and brings us home to ourselves  to be a better person.  I read the Bible daily.  There are many good books out there such as ,The Art of Happiness: a handbook for Living by Dalai Lami and Howard Cutler.  In addition there are audio books, tapes, and spiritual music to sooth one’s soul.  The public library, places of worship and many other sources provide these aids at little or no cost.

When my mood starts to get a little low I find that it helps to be around positive, healthy spiritual people.  Just being outside and enjoying the sunlight helps to lift my spirits. An hour spent in a park  walking, listening to nature, looking at  ducks in the water can be uplifting.  The joy of getting out of myself by helping another person is the biggest reward of all.

Sometimes I use slogans that I have pasted on my wall or counter top.  One is H.A.L.T =  Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired.  This is such a simple word but has a large impact on my life.  When I ask myself what have I eaten today, was I angry about something, did I isolate too much, did I get the proper rest I then can see what I need to improve.  I used to keep this posted on my bulletin board in front of my desk when I worked in oncology.  It proved to be my measuring stick for a better healthy balance.

Now that I am entering into my senior years, I am grateful for life’s experiences.  I understand that there is no one quick fix to being healthy.  It does not come in pill form that one swallows then all of life’s problems disappear.  It can not come in one visit to a place of worship or a one time visit to the gym.  It instead takes daily practice and the willingness to live.  When that last day arrives I want to look back and be able to say, “Life was a challenge but I did the best that I could do to contribute to the meaning of my life and the lives of others.”  With age comes that wonderful part of our life called WISDOM.

Originally posted 2011-01-04 13:42:45.

Boomers Find Path to Senior Games via Senior Centers

When I started retiring less than 10 years ago, I would have never in my wildest dreams thought I would be competing at the National Senior Games. Yet, I just returned from that event where I competed in two race walking competitions. It is an experience I will remember the rest of my life.

My unexpected path to the National Senior Games as it turns out, is a common one shared by many people I have spoken with. It began with me, as others, at our local senior center.

A few years ago I discovered Park Place Adult Center here in my town Johns Creek GA and began walking with the Park Place Pacers.  The men’s group was only me and Don from Cleveland and Lamond from New Jersey. We walked about 3.2 miles through Newtown Park three times a week, sharing the news of the day and stories from our lives.

Then at the annual North Fulton Golden Games we were pitted against 4 or 5 other local senior centers in a day of competition which included a couple of walking races. I heard about how good some of the other walkers were and we began training a little.

At the North Fulton Golden Games a gentleman 10 years older than me beat me in the one half mile race by 20 yards!  I was puzzled. Upon researching I found out he was race walking, a technique that makes you more efficient so you can walk faster.

I learned that the upcoming 2014 state level competition called the Georgia Olympics had a competition in race walking.  I signed up for some instructions in race walking and made the trip down to Warner Robins for the state meet last Sept where I came in 2nd in my age group for the 1500 meter race walk.

That qualified me for the National Senior Games in St. Paul MN in July 2015, so I signed up for the 1500 meters and the 5K race walks and began training a couple of months ago. The competition at the National Senior Games is fierce with 1200 athletes coming from all over the country to compete. The heat from my 1500 meter race, for example, shows 20 men coming from 19 different states for that race, many of which have been there before.

The experiences were valuable and enjoyable all along the way. Nothing like walking with new friends at your local senior center.  Competition at the state level gets those juices flowing while still fun.  At the National Senior Games level you are competing with the best but you don’t have to be a pro to enjoy it,  if you can make it that far.

Competing at any of these levels you will have the fellowship with others and enjoy their company. Everyone is happy and excited to be there. It is motivating as well to see what some people can accomplish in their 50+ lives. The training and discipline at the sate and national level is amazing.

I would encourage anyone to get involved with their local Senior Center, Active Adult Center, Adult Recreation Center, whatever it is called, and give it a try. Your life will be better for it. You will get some activity, develop some new routines on your schedule, and make new friends while sharing those activities.

Robert Fowler, age 67

PS: I came in 8th place at the National Senior Games and got a certificate and an experience I will remember. Who knows, maybe I will be going to the next National Senior Games which will be in Birmingham AL in July 2017. Hope to see you there. Find your senior center.  Here are some pics I took at the National Senior Games in Minnesota.

national senior games winners

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

basketball at national senior games

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

womens competion at National Senior Games

Originally posted 2015-07-19 21:22:47.