Forward From 50Oct 25, 2023
The following post is a guest post from Greg Gerber, an active member of the Platform Launchers Members' Club. To learn more about the great things he's doing, please visit https://forwardfrom50.com/.
It’s depressing to watch people go through life without a sense of purpose. Yet, many people over 50 feel pushed to the sidelines, even though they have so much more to offer their families, communities and the world at large.
I live in Sun City, Ariz., which was America’s first planned retirement community. The city of 60,000 people boasts of eight golf courses and eight recreation centers. For years, the community has served as a beacon for people who desire an “active retirement.”
However, one of the first things I noticed upon moving here in 2009 is how depressed and angry many of the residents seemed to be. They appeared to have everything others dream about, such as above- average retirement incomes, nice houses, a warm climate and time to pursue whatever they wanted to do. I wondered what could possibly make them so depressed.
A few years ago, I went through a period during which I didn’t sense any purpose to my life. It was then that I truly understood why people over 50 lacked enthusiasm during their “golden years.”
It dawned on me that living a life fully devoted to recreation isn’t living at all.
People here often get up early to go golfing, come home for lunch, then visit one of the clubs, take a nap, and spend the rest of the day watching television or doomscrolling through endless negative online news stories. Around 4 p.m., they head out for dinner to get the senior discount and then retreat to their homes for more mind-numbing activity before going to bed around 9 p.m.
Within months, that routine becomes a very depressing rut from which it is hard to escape. It’s especially difficult for men because their identity was wrapped up in their job or business for decades. To lose the challenge, prestige, rewards and social status that comes from working can be devastating. It’s no wonder the Social Security Administration found that people who retire at 55 have an 89% greater likelihood of dying before they reach their 65th birthdays. The National Center for Biotechnology Information found men who retire at 65 are often dead before they reach 68.
I see commercials for retirement planners all the time. They are almost exclusively focused on the financial aspect of retirement or estate planning. Yet, very few, if any, retirement professionals address the one thing people need most – a purpose for their lives.
Forward From 50 is a platform dedicated to helping men and women over 50 to live more purposeful lives by pursuing things they are passionate about.
Every week, we share uplifting stories about people who are pursuing new direction for their lives after crossing the 50-year milestone. These “seasoned citizens” realize purpose always comes from serving others.
With more time on their hands and relatively stable finances, these go-getters feel the time is right for them to pursue long-dormant dreams. Perhaps there was something they felt called to do in their teens and early 20s for which well-meaning friends and relatives talked them out of doing in order to engage in “more practical” endeavors.
Today, by combining their natural talent, learned skills and unique life experiences, these seniors follow a path leading to their ultimate destiny. They are creating a legacy which ensures their lives will impact others for generations to come.
Finding purpose can be a challenge for some people. After all, there are plethora of things they can do with their time. Often all they need is a little help to zero in on the one thing which will give them the
most joy and for which they can have the greatest impact.
With our coaching services, Forward From 50 can help men and women explore their options and take that vital first step toward a more fulfilling purpose for their lives. Whether they volunteer their time, start businesses, get meaningful jobs, write books or launch their own platforms, one this is for certain – they are living life to the full.
If you’re over 50 and struggling to find purpose for your life, then you can discover hope and inspiration at www.forwardfrom50.com, or by joining our Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/forwardfrom50.
© Greg Gerber, 2023
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