YOU ARE YOUR OWN FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH: Movement, Motivation and Mindset for Active Seniors

Energy Bite 62 – What Older Adults Really Want

Three weeks ago I wrote an article about what seniors fear. In today’s article, I’ll expand on that article as well as explore what seniors want.

So what do Active Adults over Sixty really want? I’ve written and said it before. They want to be free of long, lingering chronic illness. They want to be independent and free. They want to be “fit for living”. They want to be free of injury and they want to avoid falling and injuring themselves. They want to enjoy the rest of their life. Most want to be around pleasant and like-minded people. They want to be free from worrying about money. They want to free from worry about their health.

In fact, to find out what messages appeal to seniors about their wants, needs and fears, one only has to go to the AARP publications and look at the ads, and there they are in brilliant color for all seniors to see – fear mongering at it’s best!  AARP’s advertisers think in terms of Pills, Pharmaceuticals, and more pills. “Take this, take that” and you’ll feel better.

Seniors want to be Healthy, Happy, Fit and Independent. What does fit mean to an older adult? Maybe “functional” is a better term. Seniors simply want to be able to do what people normally do and not be limited by aging poorly.

What Active Adults over Sixty don’t want is another typical exercise program and having to give up their favorite foods. They want instant resolutions for their aches and pains. They don’t want to have to sweat, strain and diet.

So maybe what you need is a different kind of program. You need motivation. You need a way to translate that motivation into action. You need a “reason why”. The main reason most people don’t exercise, is that their “reasons why” isn’t strong enough to counteract their “reasons why not.” Maybe the exercises need to be really simple and geared to the beginning exerciser, rather than the typical “one size fits all” exercise books that fill the shelves at Barnes & Noble and the local libraries. Maybe a simple, practical and usable fitness and exercise manual is on the way. Maybe a simple manual that is directed at the Active Adult over Sixty who has never exercised or hasn’t exercised for years could be coming soon. Hmm!

I would think that a trip around any nursing home or long term assisted living facility would be enough to turn any older adult on to exercise. But apparently it’s not. That should be enough for you to say: “That’s what I don’t want, and here’s what I’m going to do about it.”

It’s easy to say that you want to be happy, healthy, active and independent, but it’s not as easy to visualize. There aren’t a lot of role models around. It’s not easy to picture the results that you want. Yes, some of the advertisements in the AARP Publications show healthy looking people, and since advertising is such a powerful tool, one would think you could identify with the models. But we don’t. And if we do, we usually equate it to illness and medications – the wrong things to be thinking about.

Probably the best role models for visualization can be found in some of the Travel Magazines. They often show healthy and happy older adult couples on cruises, in foreign ports, in restaurants, and otherwise enjoying the good life.

Try this. Picture how you want to look. Imagine how you want to feel. Then take the necessary steps to do something about it. You can follow the “system” used by Marc Allen, publisher of New World Publications and author of several books on goal setting. His system is to visualize where he wants to be at some particular point in the future.  Then he sets and writes out the goals that go with the vision.  He then turns his goals into positive affirmations.  Finally, he creates a one page plan of action and immediately takes the first steps toward getting there.

You already know what some of those steps are, don’t you. Move your body and fuel it with high octane fuel. Breathe deeply and correctly, get outside in the sunshine and get proper rest and sleep. And develop a Come Alive Attitude to go with it.

By the way, keep an eye out for that Fitness and Exercise Manual for Older Adults I mentioned earlier.  Maybe it’ll appear in late January.

Thanks for reading.

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