What will it be like living past 50 through old age? For those of you who find 50 a faint distant memory, you already know. But for those of you who are still transitioning through this period in your life, what’s it been like? One distinct period following a familiar and expected roadmap? Or a time of zigs and zags; stops and starts following no particular script?
George H. Schofield, Ph.D. in his book How Do I Get There From Here? Planning for Retirement When the Old Rules No Longer Apply describes three overlapping life stages between 50 and old age that are not defined by age, but defined by the life situations each person experiences. By knowing these life stages, Schofield believes it can make it easier to deal with the expected and unexpected changes that will undoubtedly occur.
The first stage is New Freedom. Often this stage starts when you become an “empty nester”: the kids have moved out, and you have extra time, now that your life no longer revolve around the kids.
Or you have been at your job for some time and have met most of your career goals. You then begin to realize there is more to life than your career, triggering a reevaluation of your life’s priorities. But it can be disorienting and confusing, not knowing what to do with the extra discretionary time.
The second stage is New Horizons. You start feeling comfortable with the new freedom, and begin to realize what you want to do with the extra time by learning more about yourself. What are you curious about? What do you want to learn? What do you want to be good at during this stage in your life? It could be starting a new career, working part-time doing something you truly enjoy or acquiring a new hobby.
The third and final stage is New Simplicity. You’re tired of all the competing demands and have decided you no longer want to or no longer can handle all the complications in your life. It is just too much: too much house, too much yard, too much clutter, too many volunteer commitments, and too many dreams and goals that will never be realized. You start to take time to scale back.
Have you experienced any, or all of these stages? Possibly by knowing these three stages, it can help you navigate through this period in your life between 50 and old age, so you can be that pioneer discovering your own future.
A reminder for the free Cascadia Mobile Legal Clinic coming to the Center on September 12th and 13th. Although walk-ins are welcome, it would be best to call 503-444-3449 to make an appointment. You can find more information at their website, www.cascadialawyers.com.
After the summer break, several of the Center’s classes will be returning in September. The first will be the Wednesday Lectures (formally known as the Tuesday lectures). The lectures will cover a wide range of topics from local history to services for older adults. The first lecture will be Wednesday, September 6th starting at 11:00 with Linda Stahl providing a preview of the exciting MCMC Fall lecture series.
Marvel Comics’ first superhero team which debuted in 1961 and included Mister Fantastic, Invisible Women, Human Torch and the Thing was the Fantastic Four. (Although I’m sure everyone has heard of Marvel Comics, no one sent in the correct name of the superhero team. But this week’s question should be easier especially for the boomers in the crowd.)
Debuted as a daily comic strip in 1970, Doonesbury was the first daily comic strip to win a Pulitzer prize in 1975 for editorial cartooning. (Many newspapers considered it too political and moved it from the comic page to the editorial page.) Doonesbury followed the lives of various characters including Mike, Mark, Zonker, and B.D. who all lived on a commune while attending college. For this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the name of the college they attended and for extra points, what Ivy League school was it modeled after? Email your answers to email@example.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or send it with a picture of Jane Pauley’s husband.
Well, it’s been another week, trying to tip-toe across the stage without being noticed. Until we meet again, even in doubt, there is a time to act.
“There are three stages of life: youth, maturity, and “My, you’re looking good!” Dwight David Eisenhower