Sunday, April 02, 2017

Ageism and 8 strategies

Almost 50 years ago Dr. Robert Butler, a gerontologist, coined the word "ageism." I was in my 20s then and probably laughed at the jokes and ridicule about the old that was so common in those days in the movies and on TV. Befuddled, confused, hair askew, thick glasses, sloppy, drooping socks that didn't match--it was standard fare, and probably the last group comedians could ridicule publicly with impunity. Except on social media (although now those sites have added hatred for white men to their list to demean and put down). I've logged out of those groups that called me an ugly old hag because of my faith or politics. Well, they'll learn. It was the boomers who were the writers and actors in those silly shows 30-50 years ago. And now look where they are--joking about the grandchildren showing them how to use their smart phones and forgetting the names of their neighbors of 20 years.

Butler died in 2010 and his final book, "The Longevity Prescription" listed 8 strategies, each a chapter in the book, for a healthy old age: maintain mental vitality; nurture your relationships; seek essential sleep; set stress aside; connect with your community; live the active life; eat your way to heath; and practice prevention. Good advice, even for millennials and gen-x. Genetics are only responsible for 25 percent of our length of life. The rest is lifestyle and environment.

And I'd add a 9th key--nurture your relationship with God.


No comments: