If Your Life is in a Rut, Do Something before You Rot
Two weeks ago, I passed by a pick-up truck with this sticker on the back. I did not mind it until I was a few steps away.
So I hurried back and took this picture.
The message, at face value, is satirically funny. Yet it is laden with a deeper meaning for a lot of seniors like you and me.
It made me wonder, “Is my life like this? What a rut that would be.”
Of course, my life has more squares than Eat, Sleep, Cook, Repeat. It is not in a rut. In fact, it is a lot more exciting than most.
But what about some of the more than 12 million Americans, aged 65 and over, who are living alone? How many are stuck in this routine?
What about you? Are you in the same rut? If you are, get out of it quick before you rot.
How you do it is entirely on you. But do it, you must.
There are a lot of things you can do to have a life after 60. It’s just a matter of exploring the countless possibilities available to you.
Whatever it is, make sure it gives you fun and excitement; something you have not done, seen or experienced before. It is never late to do something different, something bold, something stupid.
Here are a few worth thinking about:
1. Chill out at least once a week:
I chill out every Saturday night.
Oh, they’re nothing sensational. I just sit in a bar and listen to a live band playing the tunes of the times. My knees may creak but I can still wiggle my feet to an R&B beat.
It is very educational, too. Advanced electronics has synthesized the sounds of all musical instruments making it possible for a one-man-band to come with music of a full band – like this guy.
Through a pedal, his songs get the appropriate accompaniment, i.e., percussion, wind, etc., in perfect rhythm.
2. Drink (but don’t get drunk):
You can’t chill out without a cold bottle of beer, or equivalent. But have a limit.
I never go beyond two bottles of beer. Maybe one more, if I drink with friends. Nobody can force me to go beyond that.
I believe in the saying, “Don’t drink, and drive.” I’ve been around too long to know that there is no fun if you are drunk.
Drink for fun, not to get drunk.
3. Get a good lay or get hitched:
A close friend took a woman, widow, into his home slightly a year after his wife died.
On the other hand, I have been a widower for more than nine years and enjoying every moment of it.
Living alone is tough. It is not for sissies. While some, like me, can live with it, others need someone to hold hands with, kiss, embrace, and have passionate moments together.
Some elderly people are faced with the tough decision whether to get hitched for good or settle for one-night stands.
Either way is easy these days, thanks to the proliferation of dating sites.
But each one has its own pros and cons which can bury you deeper in a rut if not handled well.
I prefer the one-nighter. It is easier, cheaper, and non-committal. And it allows plenty of variations.
Some elderly folks, however, need a sex partner, housekeeper, caregiver and personal assistant rolled into one.
4. Get out and away:
When loneliness seems crushing me down, making me feel tired, lethargic with no enthusiasm for life, I take a long drive somewhere or check into a peaceful and quiet beach resort to unclutter my mind.
I find it delightful to get away from familiar surroundings and people for a change. The solitude allows me to regain my bearings and unclutter my mind.
Being alone and immersed in stillness is rejuvenating; gives you a better focus on more important things.
It is also an excellent way of getting out a rut, a good exercise, and a marvelous learning experience. It is an adventure, of sorts.
Not Venice but somewhere nearer
Once in a while, my daughter and her hubby bring me along on long trips, like the one pictured above.
Why being in a rut is bad:
Nobody likes to live in a dreary routine day in and day out. It creates boredom which atrophied body and mind.
And atrophy can increase the risk of depression, lack of motivation, apathy, lack of sleep, or drug abuse.
If you want to lead a full life, do something more than just Eat, Sleep, Cook, and Repeat. Otherwise, time will come when you cannot do either of them.
Please share with other seniors to help them get up and go before it is too late.