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April 2018

Peg’s Perspective: Fifty Tips on Aging Well to Celebrate 50 Years of Excellent Service

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As The Wesley Communities approach 50 years of excellent service, our CEO Peg Carmany offers “Peg’s Perspective” on a variety of topics affecting seniors and their adult children as they plan and choose to age well – 50 tips to celebrate 50 years!

Tip # 1 of 50 – What’s the key to a long, healthy, and happy life?   

Answers from an interview with Joe and Millie Anderson — people who know how it’s done!

Joe and Millie Anderson met at church when Millie was 15 years old . . . . Millie remembers Joe and his brother Frank coming into church “just a little bit late,” and Millie said to her sister,  “They’re here!”

Joe remembers that Millie was “a step above my pay grade.”

After 66 years of marriage, they bring a unique perspective to aging well, not just surviving, but thriving.

Both came from rather large families.    Joe is the youngest of 8, and Millie had four brothers.    Millie’s father died when she was five.

From Joe, who ran a successful business that has been passed to his family:    “Be straight with people.   Never, ever cheat.    And be loyal to your family, and keep them together.”

And Millie’s advice?    “Church, church, church, all the time”      “We never knew we were poor, we made our own fun.”    And from her Grandmother, who lived with them,  a deep love of poetry.

Joe and Millie’s advice exactly fits with research from The Longevity Project, which shows that in order to live not only longer, but better, people both work hard and play hard. And, if you want to live a long life, going to church really may be the answer to your prayers.         It’s the values from church – respect, compassion, gratitude, charity, humility, harmony, meditation, and preservation of health that seem to predict longevity, not what’s being preached from the pulpit.

So there you have it, tips from the pros . . . . I sincerely thank Joe and Millie for sharing their insights with all of us.

References:

THE LONGEVITY PROJECT: SURPRISING DISCOVERIES FOR HEALTH AND LONG LIFE FROM THE LANDMARK EIGHT-DECADE STUDY

4 Things to Try when Facing a Tough Time

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By: Kayla Statema

I’m sure you have heard the saying, ‘April showers bring May flowers.’ And, even as we grow and change as a company, the weather at our communities in central Ohio continues to prove this quote true. But, this short phrase is so much more meaningful than just getting through Columbus, Ohio weather!

People often look back on this quote when battling a rough patch in life. Sometimes it can be hard to see the positive that can come out of a tough time, but it’s important to keep a few things in mind when facing a challenging situation.

  • Let go of guilt and forgive

When you and your family are facing a tough time, it is important to understand that everyone will not quite be themselves. Little things that you would brush off before, may now make you upset. And, the same is true for your family and friends who are facing difficulties. You are not to blame for this, and neither are your friends and family. You all must learn to let go of guilt when you act out of character. And, you must forgive when someone you love acts out of character. If you cannot let go of guilt and find forgiveness, it will start a cycle of anger between you and your family, your friends, as well as yourself.

  • Allow others to help

It’s important to allow others to help. You may not be able to take on as much as you used to at work or at home. During a difficult time, it is important to be open and honest about what you are going through. And, if someone offers a helping hand allow them to assist you. During this time someone cutting your lawn or picking up a shift at work can make a world of a difference in your wellbeing.

  • Notice positive gestures

When you are going through a hard time it’s easy to be angry at the world. So, during this difficult time challenge yourself to look at the world in a different light. Thank the person who held the door open for you. Embrace the person who picked up the tab for your morning coffee. And, thank your spouse who stopped by the grocery store to pick up the milk you needed. Noticing these small gestures can make a difference on your overall attitude. If you are finding it difficult to notice these positive gestures, try starting a gratitude journal. Then, before you go to bed each night, note the things that happened that day which you are grateful for.

  • Be kind to yourself

You’ve probably heard this before, but it’s so important. Take time for yourself during tough times. A tough situation can take up a lot of your free time so, it’s important to make the most of every minute. Go for a walk to get fresh air. Take a hot bath with aroma therapy to relax. Or, if you have a bit more time, schedule a massage or a day trip. This may help to balance out the emotions you are feeling.

We know it can be hard to keep in hindsight, but always remember—April showers bring May flowers. As people, we will always change, hit rough patches and face challenges. But ultimately, a move to a new city, may bring us closer to new friendships. The passing of a loved one may allow you to be more understanding and compassionate in the future. And, no matter what the scenario, one day you may be able to help others going through a similar situation.