Achieving Happiness, Fulfillment and Joy in Retirement!

Jan 7th, 2009 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

The most desirable frame of mind in aging is happiness. To be sure happiness emerges in all kinds of shapes and dimensions. Being a senior citizen often means that one has accomplished maturity and control sufficient to experience happiness with regularity. It also means having arrived at pinpointing what contributes to unhappiness, thus choosing to avoid it at all costs.

Happiness, fulfillment and joy are, of course, all the same thing. They may differ in measures of exhilaration, but offer ultimately the same thing. Among the dispositions necessary for a healthy and happy frame of mind when people gather are these:

1. Intentionally decide to create a conflict free environment. This takes mutual conversation, rule setting, boundary determinations and mutual disciplines which realize how to blow the whistle on anger.

2. Insert affection, warmth, compliments, reinforcements in every conversation or communication with family members and friends. Create an atmosphere of respect.

3. Check your attitude at the door. Be sure you aren’t carrying past grudges or anxieties which may contribute to instigating tension.

4. Look for subjects that invite objectivity and avoid controversy. If there are controversial issues which nudge themselves into the conversation, find an exit, change the subject, suggest dealing with it in another time and place.

5. When in a group, be alert to persons not being included in exchanges. Find appropriate ways to bring them in. Group dynamics, even in a family, require sensitive facilitation. Perhaps you are the one to serve that role. Or you may be the one who nudges someone to take the role.

6. If someone in a group is well known for intemperate remarks, find ways to redirect the conversation quickly. Escalation of conflict is certain and deadly, unless intentional side lining is attempted.

7. Find ways to bring closure to the visit or occasion. Overly extended conversations, monologues or dialogues often lead to frustration and boredom. “Hasn’t this been a wonderful occasion(?)’’ is a good way to point guests toward the door. A superior gathering is one in which everyone departs feeling good about having been together.



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