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Family/Relationships - Adult Child/Parent
07/27/2010
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The "Golden Years" Needa Brass Ring:
Why a Sense of Purpose is Crucial for Retirement

By Mary Lloyd
Author of SuperchargedRetirement: Ditch the Rocking Chair, Trash the Remote,and Do What You Love
www.mining-silver.com


When you're working full-time,"retirement" is the brass ring you strive for. But whatkeeps you going once you retire?

Doing nothing. The popularfantasy is that you won't wantto keep going--that doing whatever you want all day every day will beperfect. But satisfaction with doing nothing typically lastsabout a year. And then?

For many retirees, it's the start of a long, frustrating time oflife. You've reached the Promised Land, and you don't like theprogram. Now what?

Doing anything. Manyresort to filling up their calendars--joining clubs and volunteeringfor everything that comes along. Maybe it beats meeting the guysat McDonald's for coffee every day, but you still feel empty. Pretty soon you quit because it's not working. Then you volunteersomewhere else, and the cycle repeats. And the emptinesscontinues.

Doing something authentic. Boththe "extended vacation" model of retirement and the "jam the calendar"model lack a sense of purpose. Knowing what's important and whatyou want to do about it is a huge piece of creating a satisfyingretired life.

Why PURPOSE? To reallythrive, you need to act on more than your own needs. You believe in what you need to dorather than just "having to get it done." Purpose keeps youexcited about life and that has a lot of pluses.
  • Purpose helps you physically. In one study, nuns who reached advanced age never exhibited symptoms ofAlzheimer's even though the physiological characteristics were evidentwhen their brains were studied after they died. The nuns were involvedin something more important than themselves even at age 100. Theyhad a reason to continue to function effectively. So they did.

  • Purpose helps you emotionally. Doing work you believe in confirms you're competent andrelevant--reinforcement that's hard to find in a leisure-centeredretirement.

  • Purpose helps you mentally. Doing purpose-defined work keeps your mind functioning moreeffectively. You learn new concepts and try new things to makethings happen. You seek and implement solutions. Acting onwhat's important to you keeps your world expanding and your learningcurve going up.

  • Purpose helps you socially. Being involved in something bigger than walking the dog connects you toa larger social sphere. You build relationships with people with thesame interest. You make contacts to learn more. That kindof involvement means you're less likely to be depressed. You'realso less likely to dwell on everyday aches and pains.
A sense of purpose if the very first thing anyone planningretirement needs to come up with--even before the money part. (Itmakes your financial planning easier because what you want to dodetermines how much money you'll need.) Purpose helps youthrive. It saves you money by helping your stay healthy. It's crucial.

Only you can find your purpose in retirement. Starting before you retire can make that alot easier.

Mary Lloyd is a consultant and speaker and author of SuperchargedRetirement: Ditch the Rocking Chair, Trash the Remote, and Do What YouLove. Her focus is on using on the potential of those over50. For more, please visit her website http://www.mining-silver.com. She can be reached at mary@mining-silver.com.
Permissiongranted foruse onDrLaura.com

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Tags: Adult Child-ParentFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentRelationships
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07/17/2010
IconDad, do you ever get scared? I remember asking my father that question one evening before bedtime.  My world was scary even without the constant news of inflation and the threat of nuclear war with the now-dead Soviet Union.  I had an upcoming test for which I hadn't studied and there was a Neanderthal who made my life hell in the school hallway.  More >>

Tags: Adult Child-ParentChildrenEducationFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentFatherFearMental HealthMorals, Ethics, ValuesParentingRelationships
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06/19/2010
IconSummer is fast approaching and school is coming to an end. Soon it will be time to load the family in the car and head down the road on a vacation you hope will be more than fun for all. More >>

Tags: Adult Child-ParentFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentFamily/Relationships - ChildrenFamily/Relationships - FamilyFamily/Relationships - TeensParentingRelationshipsRelativesTeens
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06/17/2010
IconYears ago, I called you, saying I was debating moving about 5 hours drive away from my elderly mother... You reminded me that I had an obligation to continue visiting my mother and helping her out with various chores, regardless of my individual preferences. More >>

Tags: Adult Child-ParentdietEat Less-Move MoreFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentHealthPersonal ResponsibilityRead On-AirResponse To A Callresponsibility
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06/09/2010
IconBoundaries separating you from family occur automatically when you're independent, formed either by the physical distance or the amount of contact you orchestrate. When you live together again with family, boundaries can blur rapidly. More >>

Tags: Adult Child-ParentCharacter, Courage, ConscienceCharacter-Courage-ConscienceFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentPersonal ResponsibilitySAHM stay at home momValues
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05/27/2010
IconCan a Mother Be Her Daughter's Best Friend? By Linda Perlman Gordon and Susan Morris Shaffer www.parentingroadmaps.com There is an old Chinese proverb that states "One Generation plants the trees; another gets the shade," and this is how it should be with mothers and daughters. The intimate nature of the relationship between a mother and daughter is sometimes confusing. If close, the relationship can simulate friendship through the familiar characteristics of empathy, listening, loyalty, and caring.  However, the mother/daughter relationship has unique characteristics that distinguish it from a best friendship. These characteristics include a mother's role as primary emotional caretaker, a lack of reciprocity, and a hierarchy of responsibility. This hierarchy, combined with unconditional love, precludes mothers and daughters from being best friends.  Because the essential ingredient for friendship is equality and there is always an imbalance when one person in the twosome is the parent of the other, mothers and daughters naturally can't be best friends. Marina, 27 years old says, "I love spending time with my mom, but I wouldn't consider her my best friend. She's MY MOM.  Best friends don't pay for the dress you covet in a trendy clothing store that you wouldn't pay for yourself. Best friends don't pay for your wedding. Best friends don't remind you how they carried you in their body and gave you life, and sometime gas!  Best friends don't tell you how wise they are and trump your opinion because they have been alive at least 20 years longer than you. I love my mom, and I want her to remain a mom." This doesn't mean that the mother/daughter relationship can't be very close and satisfying. While some adult relationships are still troubled, many find them to be extremely rewarding. So many moms spoke to us about how happy they are to be finished with the "eye rolling" and look from their adolescent daughters, a look that says, "You must come from a different evolutionary chain than me."  Daughters also adopted the famous Mark Twain quote about aging, with some slight alterations, and their feelings about their mothers. Mark Twain said, "When I was a boy (girl) of 14, my father (mother) was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man (woman) around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man (woman) had learned in seven years."  This generation of mothers and adult daughters has a lot in common which increases the likelihood of shared companionship. Mothers and daughters have always shared the common experience of being homemakers, responsible for maintaining and passing on family values, traditions, and rituals. Today contemporary mothers and daughters also share the experience of the workforce, technology and lack of a generation gap, which may bring them even closer together. Best friends may or may not continue to be best friends, but for better or worse, the mother and daughter relationship is permanent, even if for some unfortunate reason they aren't' speaking. The mother and child relationship is, therefore, more intimate and more intense than any other. As long as that hierarchy exists, it's not an equal relationship.  Daughters should not feel responsible for their mother's emotional well-being. Not that they don't care deeply about their mothers, it's just that they shouldn't be burdened with their mother's well being. As one mother said to her daughter, "I would gladly dive under a bus for you and there is no way that I'm diving under a bus for my friends." Her daughter responded, "And I'd gladly let you dive under the bus to save me!" The mother/daughter relationship is so much more comprehensive than a best friendship. It's a relationship that is not replaceable by any other. This unique bond doesn't mean that when daughters mature they can't assume more responsibilities and give back to their mothers, but it's never equal and it's not supposed to be. Mothers never stop being mothers, which includes frequently wanting to protect their daughters and often feeling responsible for their happiness. Mother always "trumps" friend.  Linda Perlman Gordon  and  Susan Morris Shaffer  are the authors of  Too Close for Comfort: Questioning the Intimacy of Today's New Mother-Daughter Relationship . While exploring the complexity of the mother-daughter relationship, the book demonstrates that mothers and their adult daughters have formed a greater friendship than past generations. .For helpful tips and practical advice on staying connected to your children visit  www.parentingroadmaps.com .  Permission granted for use on DrLaura.com. More >>

Tags: Adult Child-ParentFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentFamily/Relationships - FamilyFriendshipFriendshipsMotherhoodMotherhood-FatherhoodRelationshipRelationshipsRelatives
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05/27/2010
IconIt IS My Kid's Fault! By Mary Simmons, M.A. Author of Discipline Me Right, with Bert Simmons, M. Ed. www.disciplinemeright.com A few Teen Commandments from Discipline Me Right: "Discipline your child and show responsibility." "Thou shall give us consequences for our negligent or irresponsible behavior." "Hold me responsible for my actions." We live in an enabling age.  That is not a good thing. Many parents make it easy for kids to side-step their responsibilities, but, surprisingly, that is not what kids want. It feels good to take responsibility for one's actions, good or bad. Something inherent in human nature wants what is good and right. As I note in my book,  kids want to be good , which means taking responsibility for their failures and negative actions.  A mother allows her teenaged son to turn off his snooze alarm several times until he has only 15 minutes until the first bell at school.  She finally cajoles him into a quick shower, and as she is driving him to school she phones the attendance office to say it is her fault her son will be late, and he will need a pass when he arrives. He walks into 1st period with no consequences and believes it is all right to inconvenience his mother and the school staff, and to disrupt 1st period, all because he wants to sleep in. Enabling parenting: What does it look like?  Enabling parents make excuses for their children's academic failure and bad behavior. They accept marginal and failing grades without penalty. They ignore sloppy work, tardiness, and cheating. Sometimes they condone or encourage cheating. (Some even do their children's homework for them!) Enabling parents say their child failed, or cheated, or punched another kid in the hallway because he was having "family problems." They take the blame for their kid. The result is kids who can't see past their personal circumstances, blame others for their problems, and avoid challenges because they aren't familiar with the satisfaction of succeeding on their merits. Parents are enablers for a few reasons. They feel guilty.  Stop feeling guilty.  Parents feel guilty for being hostile and angry, for divorce, for drinking too much -- any number of things. Parents often try to make up for something painful that happened earlier in their child's life. You cannot make your child's life perfect. You have to forgive yourself for not being perfect.  Your child is here on earth to learn; don't hinder that process . Clean up your act, tell the truth, hold your child accountable, and encourage him or her to do better. Show your child you believe he or she can accomplish something. They don't respect themselves.  Respect yourself and don't allow disrespect . Enabling parents show appalling signs of disrespect toward themselves. They allow themselves to be manipulated by their children and political correctness ("everybody's equal and never at fault"), and they allow themselves to be deluded about what is true and false when it comes to their children's deeds. As a parent you must respect yourself. That means you  do not allow any disrespect toward yourself . It does not mean that you are arrogant, conceited, or concerned about always being right with your child. It does means that you know you are basically a good person and deserve to be treated well. They're afraid.  Stop being afraid . Your child isn't going to stop loving you. Loving you is hard-wired into their system. In fact, they will love and respect you more if you are a person of integrity and hold them accountable for their actions. That means dishing out consequences for destructive and disrespectful behavior. It means taking away privileges if their grades are low. If you're afraid of conflict, then you'll need to think ahead and formulate a plan, anticipate the conflict and know what you'll do if the argument escalates.  Not being afraid means taking charge and doing what you said you will do if your child misbehaves . Assertive, in-charge, self-respecting parents live by these words: I cannot allow you to do anything that is not in your best interest - or mine.  Mary Simmons  is a teacher, parent, and author. Her father,  Bert Simmons , is an educational consultant in the area of school discipline. Together, with the insights of Mary's teenaged students, they have put together a powerful, comprehensive guide to instilling and reinforcing positive, respectful behavior in children.  Discipline Me Right  is available through Amazon.com and your local bookstore. For more parenting tips and information about the book, visit  www.disciplinemeright.com . Permission granted for use on DrLaura.com. More >>

Tags: 10 Stupid Things Men Do to Mess Up Their LivesAdult Child-ParentBehaviorFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentFamily/Relationships - ChildrenFamily/Relationships - FamilyMotherhoodMotherhood-FatherhoodParentingRelationshipsRelativesTen Stupid Things Men Do to Mess Up Their Lives
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05/07/2010
IconWHAT MATTERS MOST By Cheryl Gochnauer Like every Tuesday morning, little kids were tossing a football around our front yard, waiting for the school bus to rumble up the street. Like every Tuesday morning, I smiled at them from behind the glass storm door, then turned toward the TV, clicked the remote, and caught the news. The second plane hit the World Trade Center. "Carrie, come here!" I yelled out the front door to my 3rd grader, making her miss the pass. "Wow!" she said, watching the instant replay. Then, "Can I go play?" Man - I wish I could go play. Instead, I'm transfixed in front of the TV, watching the rescue efforts, praying for the missing. My girls seem to be okay. Carrie did ask to sleep with me that night, but since then has been busy planning her birthday party. Her 8th-grade sister, Karen, is studying American History. "That book will have a new cover next year," I remarked. "It'll be a picture of the World Trade Center imploding." We lost more people Tuesday than from Pearl Harbor (2200), D-Day (1500) and the Titanic (1500), combined. It's staggering. So is the response of Americans. I'm a political news junkie, and my stomach has been tied in knots more times than I can count over the past couple of years. Through impeachment, the election and the erosion of religious rights, I've shaken my head, convinced our country was headed for moral meltdown. Then came Tuesday. Amazingly, America leapt up, grabbed her flags and her Bibles and ran to help. Monday, we bickered about taxes and rebates. Tuesday, we flooded New York and Washington with volunteers, money and supplies. Politicians held hands and sang "God bless America" on the Capitol steps. There was an unexpected union of church and state, and our country was better for it. A sad silver lining, I know. But a silver lining none the less. Each of us are now making our way through the stages of grief (defined by Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross as denial and isolation, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance). We've all been jolted; we all understand how fragile life is, and how precious. Those who read this newsletter every week and visit the website and message boards do so because you love your families, and want to spend as much time with them as possible. Tuesday's events sharpen our resolve to live our lives in such a way that there will be no regrets. As we help others through this tragedy, let's also take this as a universal wake-up call. Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today. If your heart is calling you home, act. Pay off those bills; put away the charge cards. Bypass anything standing between you and your kids. Those who scoffed at your desire to be an at-home parent last Monday will support you today. As the phone calls from the towers reflected, family is what matters most. (Comments? Email Cheryl@homebodies.org . Or visit her website at www.homebodies.org where you can post messages about the attacks on a special discussion board. Copyright2001 Homebodies.Org, LLC. Permission granted for use on DrLaura.com.) More >>

Tags: Adult Child-ParentCharacter, Courage, ConscienceCharacter-Courage-ConscienceFamily/Relationships - Adult Child/ParentMorals, Ethics, ValuesRead On-AirValues
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