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You are Not Alone !

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on July 1, 2020 at 8:45 PM Comments comments (1)


 

Everyone faces new challenges and problems in their lives and the "mix" is a little different with each person. It appears to be a matter of how we look at ourselves, that we can come to an understanding that we are OK, that we'll survive it alone and that life will go on as it should.

 

You see, some aren't as fortunate as others, by having another person(s) there at home, to give support and guidance during this troubling time.

Talking with someone can help to relieve the burden and provide assurance, somewhat socially, that you are not alone. It may simply become a matter of somebody being there for you to listen; while other times it may help to gain a different perspective for how to navigate.

 

If you find yourself in a situation where there is no one to talk to, try writing in a personal journal or, depending on the situation, you may want to seek professional help, at least during the early transition phase of this epidemic.

The act of staying in place can also help people in a timely fashion by aiding someone else going through a crisis, to put our situation in a different and more positive light.

 

By keeping yourself positive and focusing on your well-being, you can bump up mental health as it will increase your productivity. This alone time allows for space to focus on those things that are positive in your life and can bring about inner changes and inner blessings that you might not have thought about.

 

There is another side of this crisis, as there are other opportunities to create and get around the certainty of having all this time. It is probably a good moment to start up new family traditions or game nights to use zoom and/or create a fresh start by looking around the internet.

 

Now is also the time for soul searching as you can decide to create a new habit. There's certainly plenty of time to think and ponder which ones to choose from, to shine from and become happier for starting anew.

 

The power of having rituals can also help to harness better sleep patterns. Prioritizing going-to-bed routines and timing your sleep helps to protect immunities. By deciding to stay away from anxiety provoking material, such as the cell phone or TV news, it might just bring a night enveloped in peaceful dreams.

Most importantly, keeping yourself positive while living alone is crucial. By resetting your emotional health, you may realize that even though you're physically alone, it doesn't mean you need to be socially alone.

 


 

 

Happy at Home

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 25, 2020 at 1:25 PM Comments comments (0)


 

Is Your Life Unlived?

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 24, 2020 at 1:50 PM Comments comments (0)

 

Is the idea of being whole an elusive goal? Why are we so much at odds with ourselves? Why are we haunted by having an unlived life?


Why are we soured by the shoulda-woulda-coulda?


Certainly, we’re given many opportunities to blossom in different jobs, friends, even emotional commitments.


We must been thankful that we’re not living in 1900’s where the average life span is 47 in North America. We can change course and pick up the missing pieces and go back to what we left behind.


We have all accumulated a “story” about who we are and what we’re supposed to do and not do. These messages have come from family, religion, educational and social contexts, each letting us to either serve, run from or try to solve problems.


Age would not be a barrier to leading an adventurous life because life itself should be an adventure at every age. So…re-kindle that childlike wonderment!


And why is an adventure so important? First, a life of boredom can literally and figuratively kill us. Boredom will seek out our souls, damage our psyches and may replace constructive behavior with self-harming ones, like using alcohol.


Adventure is the opposite of boring, or of comfortable or is of the mundane. Adventure is never giving up and always moving forward. Adventure is overcoming fear and becoming stronger for it; and when fear becomes our strength. Adventure is sometimes getting injured, but wounds heal and we go forward again. Giving up is not in our vocabulary.


Second…those who challenge their minds and bodies live longer and have a better quality of life and are more mentally alert than those who watch TV or are on the computer much of the time.


In Brene Brown’s book, “The Gifts of Imperfection”, she says, “The world needs more people who have come alive”. Since we all have gifts and talents to share with the world, it’s by cultivating them that brings meaning and what becomes meaningful is up to each unique person. She warns that if we don’t use what we’ve been given, we will most likely pay for it emotionally and physically.


Using your time wisely by dipping your toes into lots of different activities and experiences, you should be able to determine what you really want to be doing next.


Provided that the way you live it doesn’t harm anyone, you have the opportunity – one might even say the duty – to live it the way you see fit. You are now free as a retiree to spend as much time as you like on what makes you happy. Some things will work; some won’t. You only have one life, so by digging deeper, you can decide what to commit to.


 


 

A Positive Mindset

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 19, 2020 at 10:20 AM Comments comments (0)

 

As I sit in all the glorified comfort of my apartment, and contemplate how I ever managed to live this long, something just occurred to me. With experiencing a recent birthday, I’m priviledged to say that life, as a whole, has treated me well, especially in these later years.


I feel fairly comfortable now, realizing that after having been put through a long- ago royal wringer and facing an incredible amount of hardship, that coming away from it allows for grand feelings, as if listening to a bird’s song. I’ve rebounded well, from years of that angst, while Father Time has actually made me all the stronger.


Since, I’ve learned not to do those things which can disrupt my own peace of mind as I try to maintain an honest and open positive attitude. To this end, one will not find any more complaints knocking at my door for what was, then.

We cannot fulfill all our fantasies either, nor should we. I cannot act inappropriately to my current stage of life. but can find appropriate ways to express it meaningfully by remaining positive


This time, this year, I’m propelled to harvest and cling to those delightful moments and lasting friendships which bring joy, clarity of purpose and peace of mind.


Then, I must ask myself what the plan is to attain — and maintain — such a grand and good attitude? I must say, it’s got to be all about acceptance, as nothing in life is permanent, including pain. Therefore, to look for a silver lining in every situation.an important endeavor.


This striving for more positive attitudes assist in growing more gracefully, instead of simply tolerating life. . Research shows that attitude, resilience, and the ability to cope with stress may also be better predictors of healthy aging than a physical disease or disability.


I get it. "Aging is a self-fulfilling prophecy," says Walter Bortz, MD, Stanford University School of Medicine professor and author of Living Longer for Dummies and Dare to Be 100. According to Bortz, the single most important factor in healthy aging is cultivating that positive outlook.


Perhaps figuring out how to do this isn’t all that hard, especially because anyone who knows anything has already told us what to do and how we should behave.


Now that my inheritance of judgments holds limitations from teachers, educators, parents and peers who have already shaped me, I believe it’s far more important to follow self-preservation tactics.


And so, time has come to experiment with this rather new thinking. That is, to spend more time focusing on the constructive parts of life and spend less time thinking negatively.. I guess I'm simply a work in progress, as time draws a higher perspective and offers more happiness.


So far, It’s certainly been a worthwhile stretch for me.


Moving Onward to Greater Happiness

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 15, 2020 at 9:30 AM Comments comments (0)

I sit here and wonder, what’s going to happen to me as I grow older? Will I still be able to use my eyes to read, my legs to walk, my ears to hear, my mind to think? It’s a somewhat scary proposition to ponder and I can then almost become paralyzed with fear for the future and what it holds.


Many people think there is nothing they can do about aging, although this isn’t true, unless you want it to be that way. One might begin by looking and thinking about the plusses and positives that being a senior has to offer.


It is seemingly obvious to me that one of the most important life lessons is that we live in the present and that’s where it needs to stay.


It’s the only time in which we can apply ourselves and our skills to make us a little bit healthier and better off. At this Corona Virus crisis time, this is a time to develop that inner self, reflect upon what can be done to improve ourselves and acquire new skills.


Undeniably, tough challenges require a person to think. It certainly becomes obvious that being healthy is simply a function of the lifestyle one leads. I would only hope I can live up to expectations as I walk along a path to more graceful living in this older and wiser age.


We all know how to perform noble acts, yet often are lax to do so. I'm as guilty as anyone else when it comes to being a good person and 'stepping up' to volunteer my time to others.


Volunteering alone can renew a greater sense of purpose as we transition out of work and end our role as caregiver. Interestingly enough, it is also is a great help in the feeling of being socially isolate, recognized as a health hazard in later years.


Studies already show that the states that have a higher incidence of volunteers also have a lower incidence of heart disease; those who spend 100 or more hours of volunteering activities are likely to experience health benefits.

Another growing body of research also says that those who volunteer have lower mortality rates and less depression, along with a greater sense of control over one's life, and higher rates of self-esteem and happiness; the greater the personal benefits are to the person who volunteers!


There's no silver bullet, but it's probably the closest thing to bringing personal satisfaction and societal well-being. And, sharing your talents with others,bringing on this new enthusiasm and having a sense of purpose for life brings with it a heightened feeling of satisfaction and well- being.


We are that generation of makers and doers from the baby boomer generation who want and need to continue to explore more possibilities.


And so, my friend, please take a peek at opportunities awaiting you in the Triangle as a volunteer, and tell us of volunteer activities you're pursuing now or wish to follow through with.


Whether to maintain and preserve the physical side of things, socialize with friends and supporters, maintain healthy (lifestyle) habits, it all adds up to making life a worthwhile venture.


Bring it on, as It would be a shame to see your work go unnoticed.

Justice for All

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 12, 2020 at 8:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Apparently, wounds inflicted from the days of slavery are rampant and with us today.As Confederate statues are coming down across the nation, protesters in downtown Raleigh took it upon themselves this week, to put a new plaque on a monument at the North Carolina capitol building.

 

The resolution for how to manage this and ninety-five additional statues in this state is coupled with other Confederate reminders which will soon need to be reckoned with .

 

Four NC counties, Vance, Lee, Hoke and Pender were named after white supremist leaders of the Confederacy, with sixty-three memorials, an optional NC state license plate as well as ten military installations throughout the US, not to mention similar examples in six other southern states.whicj imply white supremacy.

 

To this day, North Carolina maintains a state holiday to commemorate Confederate Memorial Day on May 10, although I haven’t personally seen evidence of this celebration in my forty years of living throughout North Carolina.

 

This evidence of past behaviors and attitudes seen today will, hopefully,bring the promise of a larger life to exist for oppressed black American citizens.

 

We appear to be haunted by such examples and the unexamined lives of ancestors who have wrought our cultural heritage.

 

I must draw the lline, finally, and after too many years of inaction in achieving justice for all. The challenge of facing consequences of past actions in US history is aking Americans to face a long due re- examination of our principles and reframe our perception of old fashioned defenses to the privileged.


Our attitudes will determine whether we love or hate, tell the truth or lie, act or procrastinate. In other words, what we do now has the power to show the world what will be. 


 


 

Could This Be the Season ?

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 12, 2020 at 6:30 AM Comments comments (0)

 

I feel it’s somewhat important to pass down some thoughts taken from reading,“The Seasons of Life” by Jim Rohn . His book is an analogy of the various seasons, depicting triumph and tragedy in life. He defines guidelines for bringing inspiration to the searchers of a better life.


We’re all going through something that is different now and sometimes a bit scary with this Corona Virus pandemic, but we’re all in this together and it’s easy to freak out by what’s going on. However, we just might need to take a moment or two to think about what could be going right.


Out of all the challenges we face, it’s a choice to decide to find something beautiful to come out of it. We can use this time as an opportunity for change where it’s up to us to create a new ID and become renewed.


After all, change is inevitable. One of the major tasks of growing older is for each of us to learn how to cope and move forward with the times. And although one may be swept away by it, one can also choose to cooperate with it, adapt to it and benefit by it.


“The wisdom that comes with the careful use of winter teaches us that evolution is merely a revolution at a slower pace and that constant gradual change is the order of the universe”, says Rohn.


He tells that winter is a season of opportunity. “It can be a time of reading, a time for planning, a time for gathering our strength for the coming spring and a time for taking comfortable shelter. It’s a time of Thanksgiving and a time for sharing of life’s bounteous gifts. Winter is a time for being grateful, both for what we can yet achieve and for what we have. It is a time to be proud but not a time to be egotistical." Rohn's description of what should happen in our winter of life, is happening now.


We also need to realize that the simplicities of the past will no longer be with us and will not return. A change is certainly due to maintain our health and to enjoy this chapter of our lives.


When Rohn writes of winter's attributes, I’m reminded that by hunkering down and re-discovering ourselves, we can do ourselves a favor to look inward to realize our purpose and uphold our emotional well-being.


The deal is this; life isn’t happening to you but for you. People do struggle, but it always leads to a new way of life. The good part is that it presents an opportunity to be seen as a blessing in disguise.


So give yourself credit and remind yourself that you’ve muddled through crises before and that you have the strength to deal with these new changes. Then, get positive support from those who believe in you,and find a good enough reason to surround yourself with ladies in our group. Lighten up. The best is yet to be!


 

Black Lives Need to Breathe

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 11, 2020 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)

It’s a time for reconciliation with who we are as American’s today, as it becomes imperative to re- think how policing is practiced in this country. Black men have been traditionally targeted and victimized as the issue of racial injustice is being cried by the throngs who hold George Floyd highly in regard as their symbol for “Black Lives Matter”.

 

The violence has been going on for decades. Years ago, attempts were being made with police chiefs, community leaders, academics, experts in community hearings to come up with how to deal with the issue of handling equality and thereby, ensuring racial justice.

 

Their recommendations would have changed the culture of policing. As it stands today, I don’t believe police are properly taught for how to intervene in mental health issues or are given the skills for how to manage a complex situation or de-escalate confrontation. Perhaps ensuring greater public safety lies with policies and protocols in which police are counted as guardians and not as warriors.

 

Perhaps truths in how to secure truth and justice will prevail as we soon come upon Juneteenth, a time which blacks have celebrated the end of slavery in America. They then believed they would be embraced as full citizens.

 

Unfortunately, justice has been delayed, as plantation owners felt blacks hadn’t evolved enough to justify their right to becoming entitled as full US citizens.That same the battle continues today.

 

As a white woman in her senior years, I carefully check to see if and how this scenario with protesters and rioters might work itself out. The time is ripe to make fundamental changes, as youth must be given credit for unearthing and awakening the public, for a change. I stand with them in their pursuit of justice; that they will push hard to eliminate racist behavior.

 

Black lives matter, indeed, as I pray a rightful conclusion will come to those who stand united and cry out for freedom and justice for all.


``

 

A More Positive Mindset

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on June 5, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (0)

As I sit in all the glorified comfort of my apartment and contemplate how I ever managed to live this long, something just occurred to me. From experiencing a recent birthday, I’m happy to say that life, as a whole, has treated me well, especially in these later years.

 

I feel fairly comfortable now, realizing that having been put through a royal wringer in the past, facing an incredible amount of hardship, coming away from it brings lofty feelings, as if I'm hearing bird song instead.

 

In the tragedy, coping skills, resilience, and a better life perspective offered to improve my status, although I didn't look forward to making changes at the time. However, the greatest improvements finally occurred while grappling with a new identity and purpose those several years ago. Shall I call it severe growing pains ? Perhaps.

 

I’ve rebounded from past years of angst, while Father Time has actually made me all that much stronger. To that end, I cannot, now, find any real complaints knocking at my door about what was, then. Anyway, there's no such thing as going back

 

Although I don't expect to fulfill any of life's fantasies, nor should I, it's okay to find appropriate ways to express life more meaningfully. I’ve learned not to do that which disrupts my peace of mind by preserving an honest, open and positive attitude. Actually, It's that simple

 

This time, this year, I’ cling to true blessings that come along, of lasting friendships, clarity of purpose and peace of mind.

 

Then, by preserving positivity, looking for the silver lining in every situation, and growing gracefully y, surely brings this pleasant side to life, rather than simply tolerating it.

 

Research shows that attitude, resilience, and the ability to cope with stress are better predictors of healthy aging than a physical disease or disability.

I get it. "Aging is a self-fulfilling prophecy," says Walter Bortz, MD, Stanford University School of Medicine professor and author of Living Longer for Dummies and Dare to Be 100. According to Bortz, the single most important factor in healthy aging is cultivating that positive outlook.

And so, time has come to experiment some more with this thinking, to spend time to focus on the more constructive parts of life and spend less time on the negative..

I guess I'm simply a work in progress, as the passage of time brings on a worthwhile stretch for me, the former pessimist.

 

Aging Gracefully

Posted by jayemerill@live.com on February 17, 2020 at 3:25 PM Comments comments (0)


 

When people talk about growing older gracefully, it's not uncommon to ask what that actually means or if it is actually does happen. How does one accomplish this? Who’s measuring, and how do they do it? There are so many messages about aging, that to age gracefully is to ask someone about the ‘elephant in the room”; it can be both scary and difficult to measure or carry out.

 

For one thing, being graceful can appear in different strokes with different people so there's really not a fixed formula for implementation. Perhaps aging gracefully doesn't have to refer to age or appearance, but rather the attitude one holds onto as she goes through the various stages of life. It's doing your best to uphold virtuousity, both of self and others, by invoking some daily nourishment and understanding of the human race, a sharing of peace and well being.

 

Having a youthful attitude is also helpful, as we must all eventually recognize a decline in vitality (wrinkles, balding, loss of muscle mass and tone, diminishing vision and gray hair, high blood pressure, anxiety). However, aging gracefully doesn't mean you have to wear your wrinkles with pride - instead, you need to do whatever is necessary to stride into your older years with confidence.

 

For many, it means taking steps to make your outside appearance match the way you feel on the inside. I often look at myself and see the 30 year old woman that I was and still think I am, although she's somewhat trapped in a much older body.

 

If you feel energetic and youthful internally, I challenge you to begin to look at new ways to grow and come up with a greater understanding for how to best stall the progression of age. In our LUNCH & LEARN sessions, I often ask and challenge ladies to make choices about their well being and live a bit longer by adopting simple lifestyle choices for increased health and happiness.

 

We also remain ready and willing to entrust our hearts to new friends. We women know that it is only within the context of friendship that we truly grow and learn as people. There are few things as joyous as a reunion of these friends, and few emotions as exhilarating as the excitement of meeting new people and discovering we have much in common with them.

 

Our friends help us face the reality that we are actually getting older, yet continue to grow each day, that we're far better off now that we ever were, that we're wise enough to know what we need to know and how to get it, and we can offer that wisdom to those who will follow in our footsteps.

 

Jean Chittister in her book "The Gift of Years;Growing Older Gracefully, has said "A blessing of these years is that they offer us the chance to be excited by new personalities, new warmth, new activities, new people all over again. Does it demand that we fall in love? No. But it does demand that we love someone else enough to be just interested in them as we are in ourselves. It demands that we set out to make tomorrows happy."

 

I have come to cherish our girlfriends, viewing them as members of an extended family, our little tribe of imperfect and loveably adoreable ladies. We have tons of stories and experiences to share as we age together, and find special meanings in the art of growing older.

 

You see, it is through our continued conversations amongst each other which makes the very most sense about how best to grow old. The graceful part is a personal choice.



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