The years after 50 can be the longest and most fulfilling of life’s stages. This requires taking care of your overall health through practices that enhance all the areas of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellness. Many Boomers can neglect at least one of these without thoughtful planning.
Indigenous peoples of most continents have used the circle as an elegant, simple symbol of Life and Wellness for thousands of years. The way most of us were raised in the 20th century, however, such a depiction was foreign. In fact, many of our parents still do not understand or grasp this symbol. Boomers have seen the incredible advances in the four realms through:
- Physical: Prevention, diagnostic and treatment tools that prolong both the length and quality of our average lifespan, far beyond any other generation’s
- Psychological: Health and illness findings with pharmacological and behavioral tools that make life more pleasant for more people
- Spiritual: Truths that many of us see emerging as a unifying theory, understanding the oneness of these four aspects of life and health
- Social: Supports that hold the potential for us to manage our inner lives effectively
As Dr. Andrew Weil, the noted health expert, says in his book, Healthy Again: A Lifelong Guide to Your Physical and Spiritual Well-Being, “I hardly notice my aging on a day-to-day basis. When I look in the mirror in the morning, [I] seem the same as the day before. But… looking at old photographs, I can’t help but notice the physical change that has taken place…”
Preparing for a healthy life after 50 requires attention to our long-term health and wellness. Such factors as diet, exercise, use of alcohol, tobacco – even prescription drugs, vitamins and other food supplements – all require attention. They can all be important contributors to your longevity and to the quality of your life, whether retired or not.
Health and wellness at this age aren’t characterized by clinging to a denial of aging, but learning to adapt to that reality and, as Dr. Weil asserts, “To be in the best health we can, at any age.”