NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

PortWatch

June 6, 2014

Boomer Talk: Revisiting The Me Generation

You may recall The Me Generation, a name that was attached to the baby boomers during the 1970s. This group was thought to be self-involved and sometimes condemned as narcissistic, selfish and indulgent. Putting yourself first was not held in high esteem by the general population; however, this all-about-me generation did bring forth really positive aspirations for self-realization and self-fulfillment.

And then the baby boomers got older, became responsible members of society, working at jobs and raising a family while serving their communities. Caring for others was a high priority.

But, as we are aging into the elder years, we need to shift our priorities at a time when we are leaving or have left our full-time jobs behind and our children no longer need us to take care of them. It is the time when we can, and must, once again, turn to self-care and make it top-priority.

Sometimes, it happens there is a sudden shift, like a “wake-up” call with a serious health challenge. It then becomes clear; we can no longer ignore our bodies and it may be the first time, ever, to confront mortality. Or, as often happens, the changes come on gradually, with a growing awareness we are not as young as we once were. It may be when we look in the mirror and notice the extra weight around the middle or when we acknowledge the chronic joint pain, but, at some point, we know things are different and it’s a whole new ball game.

Now, we are required to pay attention. Perhaps for decades, we have neglected ourselves, put our own needs to the side, sat by and watched the weight increase and the muscles weaken. But, as boomers and beyond, we have to adjust; we have to do better. With age must come a willingness to take better care of ourselves.

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