So What Is Self Care? ~ University of Kentucky

So What Is “Self Care”?

Self care includes any intentional actions you take to care for your physical, mental and emotional health. Good self care is a challenge for many people and it can be especially challenging for survivors of interpersonal violence and abuse. It can also be an important part of the healing process. Self care is unique for everyone. Below are some ideas to get you started in developing your own self care plan. It can be overwhelming to consider taking on many new things. It may be helpful to start with a couple of ideas and build on that.

Physical self-care is an area that people often overlook

Planet

Food

  • Food is a type of self-care that people often overlook. People are often so busy that they don’t have time to eat regularly or that they substitute fast food for regular meals.
  • It’s not always reasonable to expect people to get 3 square meals a day (plus snacks!) but everyone should make sure they get adequate nutrition.
  • One example of a self care goal: Even if it’s a small amount, I will eat something for each meal. Exercise
  • avoExercise is one of the most overlooked types of self-care. The CDC recommends at least 30 minutes of exercise 5 times a week.
  • Exercise, even if it’s just a quick walk at lunchtime, can help combat feelings of sadness or depression and prevent chronic health problems.
  • One example of a self care goal: I will go for a walk Tuesday and Thursday after I get out of my morning class.

     

     

     

    Sleep

  • Although everyone has different needs, a reasonable guideline is that most people need between 7-10 hours of sleep per night.
  • One example of a self care goal: I will go to bed by 11:00 p.m. during the week so that I can get enough sleep.

    Medical care

    • Getting medical attention when you need it is an important form of physical self-care.
    • Some survivors put off getting medical care until problems that might have been relatively easy to take care of have become more complicated.
    • One example of a self care goal: I will set aside money in my budget (or seek financial help) so that I

      can get my prescriptions filled every month.
      Some information adapted from RAINN.org, UK Violence Intervention and Prevention Program

Watch

Emotional self-care will mean different things for different people. It might mean:

Counseling

  • This could mean seeing a psychologist, a clinical social worker, or therapist.
  • The VIP Center can help refer you to a counselor.
  • The UK Counseling Center provides free services to UK students.
  • One example of a self care goal: I will find out more about the UK Counseling Center so that I can decide whether this might be helpful for me.

    Keeping a journal

  • Some survivors find that recording their thoughts and feelings in a journal or diary helps them manage their emotions after an assault or abusive situation.
  • One example of a self care goal: I will write in my journal at least 3 times this week.

    Meditation or relaxation exercises

• Relaxation techniques or meditation help many survivors with their emotional self-care. For example:  Sit or stand comfortably, with your feet flat on the floor and your back straight. Place one hand

over your belly button. Breathe in slowly and deeply through your nose and let your stomach expand as you inhale. Hold your breath for a few seconds, then exhale slowly through your mouth, sighing as you breathe out. Concentrate on relaxing your stomach muscles as you breathe in. When you are doing this exercise correctly, you will feel your stomach rise and fall about an inch as you breathe in and out. Try to keep the rest of your body relaxed—your shoulders should not rise and fall as you breathe! Slowly count to 4 as you inhale and to 4 again as you exhale. At the end of the exhalation, take another deep breath. After 3-4 cycles of breathing you should begin to feel the calming effects.

• One example of a self care goal: I will practice deep breathing before I go to sleep to calm down from the day.

Emotional self-care can also involve the people around you.

It’s important to make sure that the people in your life are supportive

  • Nurture relationships with people that make you feel good about yourself!
  • Make spending time with friends and family a priority
  • If you have trouble finding people who can support your experience as a survivor, consider joining a support group for survivors or getting involved with the VIP Center

    Be wary of…

  • Friends or family who only call when they need something
  • People who always leave you feeling tired or depressed when you see them
  • Friends who never have the time to listen to you

Some information adapted from RAINN.org, UK Violence Intervention and Prevention Program

• Anyone who dismisses or belittles your experience as a survivor

Smile Yellow Face 3

You can deal with these people by setting limits.

  • You don’t have to cut them out of your life (especially with family, that may not even be an option!)

    but choose the time you will spend with them carefully.

  • Make sure that your time with these people has a clear end.
  • Cut back on the time you spend with people who don’t make you feel good, or spend time with them

    in a group rather than one-on-one.

    Screen your calls!!

• There’s no rule that says you have to answer your phone every time it rings. If you don’t feel like

talking on the phone, call people back at a time that’s more convenient for you. You can deal with these people by letting some go.

  • If there are people in your life who consistently make you feel bad about yourself, consider letting those friendships or relationships go.
  • This can be a difficult decision. Remember that you deserve to have people around you who genuinely care about you and who support you.

     

    Another challenge can be in finding time for fun leisure activities

    Many of us have full time jobs, go to school, volunteer and have families. Finding time to do activities that you enjoy is an important aspect of self-care.Smiling Buddha

  • Be aware of things you may be doing that take up a lot of your time but don’t support your self care such as too much time on the internet, watching TV, even sleeping. These can all be relaxing, enjoyable activities in moderation but can become a way of retreating and isolating yourself.

     

    Get involved in a sport or hobby that you love!! Find other people who are doing the same thing! Knowing that people are counting on you to show up can help motivate you.

    Make a date night and stick with it, either with a partner, a friend or a group of friends.
    Turn off your cell phones (within reason. If the babysitter needs to be able to find you, consider leaving him/her the number of the restaurant so that you can turn off your ringer!)
    Treat leisure appointments as seriously as business appointments. If you have plans to do something for fun, mark it on your calendar!
    Make your self-care a priority, not something that happens (or doesn’t happen!) by accident.

Some information adapted from RAINN.org, UK Violence Intervention and Prevention Program

http://www.uky.edu/StudentAffairs/VIPCenter/downloads/self%20care%20defined.pdf

Here’s What Real Healthy People Actually Snack On ~ Casey Gueren

When it comes to avoiding that hangry feeling, the best defense is a good offense. And a good offense consists mostly of snacks.

 

That means planning ahead and stocking up on healthy options you’ll actually keep in your kitchen/purse/office fridge/pockets/whatever.

Here's What Real Healthy People Actually Snack On

Because when you have zero time in your day and need to grab something fast, you’ll go for the peanut butter cup every damn time. BUT if you already have something satisfying and better for you on hand: snack win!

HOWEVER, if you hear one more person call a handful of almonds a snack, you can rightfully throw it in their face.

Here's What Real Healthy People Actually Snack On
History / Via imgfave.com

Here are 23 better, more interesting options that will awaken your starving soul.

They’ve all been made (and devoured) by real, seriously healthy people who say things like “satiety” and “fuel your body.” Steal their snackspiration so you’ll never have to go head-to-head with the vending machine again.

1. Open-Faced PB & Blueberries

“This is one of my favorite snacks. Almond butter is a great way to start the day with some awesome protein. And blueberries are my favorite fruit because they’re super low in sugar. When I eat bread it’s ONLY Ezekiel, which is a sprouted grain bread that has no yeast.” —Gabrielle Bernstein, author of Miracles Now

2. Egg and Apple Combo

Egg and Apple Combo

Courtesy of Aaron Flores

“Eating should stimulate all of our senses, and a perfectly cooked hard-boiled egg is about as good as it gets for me. Paired with a green apple, this is the perfect snack to satisfy any hunger and please your palate as well.” —Aaron Flores, RDN, California-based nutritionist specializing in intuitive eating and Healthy at Every Size (HAES)

3. Spiced Apple Chips

“The recipe is incredibly simple — only very thinly sliced apples sprinkled with a little apple pie spice and popped in the oven on a low temperature for a couple hours. The outcome is nutritious and delicious and a great substitute for fried chips. My husband and I brought a bunch of them hiking with us — they make a great portable snack.” —Anne Mauney, MPH, RD, founder of fANNEtasticfood.com

4. Avocado Toast

Avocado Toast

Courtesy of Amelia Winslow

“My favorite way to eat avocados is smashed onto toast with a sprinkle of salt and a few red pepper flakes. If I’m really hungry I add a fried egg. The healthy fat from avocado plus carbohydrates from bread makes it ultra-satisfying and always delicious.” —Amelia Winslow, MS, MPH, nutritionist and founder of Eating Made Easy

5. Spicy And Sweet Roasted Chickpeas

Spicy And Sweet Roasted Chickpeas

Courtesy of Nita Sharda

“I like this as a snack for when I’m craving something savory. The crunchy bite size peas are also loaded with protein and fiber, so a little goes a long way.” —Nita Sharda, RD, owner of Carrots and Cake Balanced Nutrition Consulting (See the full recipe here.)

6. Banana Nut Toast

Banana Nut Toast

Courtesy of Anjali Shah

“This is a slice of sprouted wheat bread with ½ tablespoon almond butter, ½ tablespoon peanut butter, ¼ sliced banana and 1 teaspoon chopped walnuts on top — with an optional sprinkle of cinnamon and drizzle of honey. This delicious snack packs a protein and fiber punch guaranteed to keep you full in between meals.” —Anjali Shah, board certified health coach and founder of The Picky Eater

7. A Makeshift Pudding Cup

“Greek yogurt mixed with some chocolate protein powder and raspberries makes for a perfect high-protein snack under 200 calories. You’re getting a good source of probiotics from the Greek yogurt, antioxidants and fiber from the raspberries, and an extra boost of protein from half a scoop of whey protein.” —Katie Yip, New York City-based Pilates teacher

8. Miso Zoodle Soup

“I love noodle soup, but most are just carb bombs in a bowl. I used my new spiralizer to make zucchini noodles, then whipped up miso broth, which contains probiotics that boost gut health by supporting digestion, and then tossed in some carrots, mushrooms, ginger, and spinach.” —Michele Promaulayko, editor-in-chief of Yahoo Health and author of the new book 20 Pounds Younger

9. Blueberry Coconut Balls

Blueberry Coconut Balls

Courtesy of Danielle Omar / Via foodconfidence.com

“These no-bake snack balls are made with antioxidant-rich frozen wild blueberries. If you eat them right away they are super cold and refreshing, but if you let them thaw a bit they are melt-in-your-mouth delicious!” (See the full recipe here.) —Danielle Omar, MS, RD

10. A Picturesque Cheese Plate

“This is a simple, on-the-fly appetizer made up of stuff I had in the fridge — olives, grape tomatoes, caper berries. Anchoring the plate is a hunk of feta cheese that I dressed up with some chopped oregano from the garden and red onion.” —Monica Reinagel, licensed nutritionist and host of the Nutrition Diva podcast

11. Fruit Pizza

“This watermelon ‘pizza’ is a perfect low-calorie treat that satisfies the sweet tooth, replenishes your muscles, and hydrates your body. Ideal for a hot summer day, a party snack, or post-workout, since it will help replenish glycogen stores in your muscles and aid recovery. Both the watermelon and banana also help with bloating! ” —Idalis Velazquez, NASM-CPT, founder of IV Fitness

12. A Loaded Sweet Potato

A Loaded Sweet Potato

Courtesy of Anjali Prasertong

“My favorite mid-morning snack is a leftover roasted sweet potato, split open and stuffed with a couple dollops of plain Greek yogurt. If I’m feeling fancy, I’ll sprinkle it with furikake, a super-flavorful Japanese seasoning mix with toasted nori and sesame seeds. With all the protein, healthy carbs, and fiber, it’s a snack that keeps me satisfied for hours.” —Anjali Prasertong, contributing editor at The Kitchn and graduate student studying to become a registered dietitian

13. A Fruit Smoothie That Only Looks Like a Daiquiri

“California Sunshine Smoothie! Yummy — 139 calories and 7 grams of fiber. Try it! All organic: 10 strawberries, 1 orange, ½ a medium banana, 1 cup of ice, and water!” —Jeanette Jenkins, president of The Hollywood Trainer

14. Cheese, Crackers, Tomatoes, and Veggies

“This great combination keeps you full and promotes satiety. Protein comes from the delicious mozzarella cheese (a low-fat selection), the fiber comes from the high-fiber crackers (one with 5 grams of fiber or more), and vegetables!” —Shelly Marie Redmond, RD, author of Eat Well and Be Fabulous

15. Homemade Sweet Potato Chips

“I love this because it’s whole food eating – a two-ingredient snack solution.” 
—Rachel Beller, MS, RDN, founder of Beller Nutritional Institute and author of Eat to Lose, Eat to Win

16. Apple Peanut Butter Toasts

“A good, satisfying, filling snack and the tasty health benefits of cinnamon and SunButter — a healthy option for anyone with nut allergies. It also has more unsaturated fat, magnesium, iron, zinc, and vitamin E than peanut butter.” —David Kirsch, celebrity trainer and founder of David Kirsch Wellness

17. Cheddar Kale Chips

“Dedicated to all the people who are over ridiculously priced kale chips. These savory chips make for the perfect snack, and won’t hurt your pockets.” (See the full recipe here.) —Wendy Lopez, nutritionist, and Jessica Jones, MS, RD, co-hosts of Food Heaven Made Easy

18. A Cookie You Can Make IN A PAN

“Cookies have been a great tool for me when I train really hard in the gym and need a carbohydrate or sugar boost to refuel my muscle and liver glycogen. Often store-bought cookies are too high in fat to be a good post-workout tool. Therefore, I get creative in my kitchen and got obsessed with a cookie that gets cooked in a pan. I dreamed of something that was part pancake, part gooey and crunchy cookie! This is ¼ cup quick-cooking oats, 1 tablespoon coconut flour, 1 tablespoon agave nectar, 1 whole egg, 1 scoop chocolate whey protein powder, Stevia-sweetened chocolate chips, and a dash of salt. Stir it up and add a splash of milk if needed for consistency. Cook in a nonstick pan sprayed with coconut oil. Cook on low and flip when it starts to bubble — just like when cooking pancakes. It’s only 330 calories!” —Holly Perkins, CSCS, author of the upcoming Lift to Get Lean

19. Crudités For One

“This is what I typically eat as a mid-morning snack. It is carrot sticks, celery sticks, half an avocado, beetroot, and spinach, accompanied with almond butter and cottage cheese. This gives the perfect balance of protein and veggies to keep me satisfied and full until the next meal.” —Aina Hussain, registered nutritionist and founder of The Fruitful Foodie

20. Cauliflower Fries

From her Instagram: “I just made French fries out of cauliflower and @questnutrition protein powder. Hey! Don’t say ew until you try it. It’s seriously amazing!” (See the full recipe here.) —Cassey Ho, creator of POP Pilates

21. This Bright and Cheery Deliciousness

“I love because it I looove fresh fruit and veggies — and goat cheese and avocado call my name regularly! It’s a perfect mini meal or snack, because it’s packed with nutrients including antioxidants and fiber to help keep you full. Plus the healthy fat in avocado provides satiety, and who doesn’t love the sweetness of mango and taste of goat cheese? The combo may seem funny, but it is a real food combo that is a winning gem. Promise!” —Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, author of The New You and Improved Diet

22. Kale Guacamole Wraps

“Just wilt kale or any other leafy green by soaking in warm water for a few minutes, then stuff with whatever you want and enjoy!” (See the full recipe here.) —Wendy Lopez, nutritionist, and Jessica Jones, MS, RD, co-hosts of Food Heaven Made Easy

23. A Smoothie In A Bowl

A Smoothie In A Bowl

Courtesy of Kath Younger

“One of my favorite snacks is a smoothie made with oats served in a bowl. This one is a cup of frozen berries, half a banana, a cup of milk, and a quarter cup of oats thrown in a blender, then topped with toasted buckwheat and nut butter. The oats give the smoothie a nice doughy taste, plus they amp up the nutrition with extra fiber and energy! And enjoying it as a ‘soup’ means I savor every last bite.” —Kath Younger, RD, founder of Kath Eats Real Food

http://www.buzzfeed.com/caseygueren/healthy-noms

10 Things Retirees Won’t Tell You ~ Catey Hill

(This article appeared previously on MarketWatch.) 

 

Older retired woman sitting at a table

Thinkstock

Contrary to popular belief, retirement can be a very stressful time. According to a number of studies and surveys, retirees are not all living the dream. Here are 10 things they may neglect to tell you if you ask how things are going:

1. We’re Broke

 
Each day, roughly 10,000 boomers turn 62 — the average age at which people actually retire, according to a recent Gallup poll.
 
But many of these retirees, and ones a few years older, aren’t spending their golden years traipsing around the world. In fact, quite the opposite. According to the Census Bureau’s Supplemental Poverty Measure, which takes into account out-of-pocket health-care spending and government benefits like food stamps, in addition to income, roughly 15 percent of people over age 65 — that’s 6.1 million people in all — live in poverty. And nearly half are considered “near poor,” meaning that they live with incomes that are less than twice the poverty threshold.
 
Tomorrow’s retirees aren’t in much better financial shape: Among workers age 55 and older, nearly 60 percent have saved less than $100,000 for retirement, and 24 percent have saved less than $1,000, according to the nonprofit Employee Benefit Research Institute. That’s far less than financial advisers typically recommend: For example, AON Hewitt estimates that Americans will need roughly 11 times their final working salary when they retire, so someone with a $50,000 salary would need $550,000 upon retirement to maintain his or her standard of living.

(MOREWhat Women Fear Most About Retirement)

 
That may help explain why even retirees who have retirement savings say that they rely heavily on Social Security — which pays an average monthly benefit of around $1,290. Indeed, 57 percent of current retirees consider it a major source of income, according to a recent Gallup poll (up from half in 2003); only 33 percent say that pension plans are a major source of retirement income, 24 percent say 401(k)s, 23 percent home equity and 15 percent individual stocks and mutual funds.
 
2. Retirement Is More Stressful Than It Looks
 
Retirement is supposed to be the ultimate in relaxation, with mornings spent leisurely reading the paper over coffee, afternoons hitting the links or chilling on the beach, and evenings at pleasant dinners with your spouse or watching your favorite programs.
 
But for many people, it’s just the opposite. In a study by the American Institute of Stress, out of 43 potentially stressful major life events, retirement was ranked the 10th most stressful, ranking just higher than a major change in the health or behavior of a family member (11th). The death of a spouse, something many people experience in their retirement years, ranks Number One. 
 
Only 39 percent of people who are actually retired say that it is less stressful than life was during the five years before they retired, according to a survey of more than 1,200 people 50 and older by National Public Radio, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health.

(MORESecrets of Successful Retirees)

 
Studies show that money tends to be the number one stressor. In Merrill Lynch’s 2013 Family & Retirement study, “running out of money to live comfortably” was the biggest concern for members of both the Silent Generation (people aged 68-88) and boomers, followed by the worry that they are or will be a burden to their family.
 
It’s also hard for many retirees to give up working. “We get a lot of our happiness from purpose and meaning in our lives — and jobs give us that,” says Chicago psychologist Elizabeth Lombardo, the author of Better Than Perfect. She adds that other retirees get stressed out by the lack of structure in their days, and some find change, even if it’s positive change, to be stressful.
 
3. We Spend Too Much Time By Ourselves
 
Roughly one in 10 people aged 65 and older report that they are severely lonely, according to a study published in 2012 in the Journal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary and Applied — a finding that has remained roughly constant in studies for the last few decades. Often, the lack of a career exacerbates loneliness: “We often don’t realize that our careers provide quite a bit of interaction,” says California-based psychologist Traci Lowenthal. “When retirement begins, most of those daily connections are gone.
 
People in their 80s and older tend to experience higher rates of loneliness than do younger people, other research shows, as spouses and friends pass away.

(MOREHow to End the Senior Loneliness Epidemic)

 
Worse yet, loneliness can lead to health problems and premature death. Older adults who report extreme loneliness had a 14 percent greater risk of premature death than those who didn’t, according to studies of more than 2,000 adults age 50 and older by researchers at the University of Chicago.

In a discussion at the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual meeting this year, the researchers noted that loneliness can be twice as unhealthy for older people as obesity can, with health consequences that include disrupted sleep, elevated blood pressure, increases in the stress hormone cortisol, altered gene expression in immune cells, increased depression and lower overall well-being.

 
4. We’re In Denial About Our Health Problems
 
It’s an unfortunate reality of aging: our health declines as we get older. According to the Health and Retirement Study, one of the most comprehensive data sets looking at older Americans, almost half of Americans ages 55 — 64 say they are in good or excellent health, while only about a quarter of those 65 and older say the same. Among the most common ailments facing older adults are hypertension, heart conditions and arthritis, the study found, and roughly one in four people 65 to 74 and nearly one in three people 75 to 84 have two or more major health problems.
 
But even though it seems like common sense to assume that our health will deteriorate as we age, most people approaching retirement don’t believe it.

When asked “All in all, how would you say your health in retirement will be/is as compared to the five years before you retired?,” just 13 percent of pre-retirees said they expected their health would be worse in retirement, while nearly 40 percent of those who have actually retired said it was worse, according to the NPR/RWJF/Harvard study.

 
Justin Sayde, a research manager at the Harvard School of Public Health, says the result is “intriguing” and notes that “in recent decades, health and disability levels have improved in the 60-70 age group,” which may in turn lead pre-retirees to be overly optimistic about what to expect in the long run.
 
Some studies show that compared with those who keep working, retirees have worse health. A 2012 study that followed more than 5,400 men and women 50 and older over a 10-year period found that those who had retired had a 40 percent greater risk of stroke and heart attack than those who kept working — and that this effect was the most pronounced in the first year after retirement. (To be sure, other studies show a health benefit to retirement.)
 
Perhaps just as important, many retirees are having trouble getting the health care they need. According to the NPR/RWJF/Harvard survey, 13 percent of retirees say they have trouble finding quality health care and 13 percent say they had trouble seeing the doctor of their choice.
 
5. Our Health-Care Costs Are Huge
 
While Medicare covers plenty of health-care expenses for people 65 and older, it doesn’t cover everything — a fact that surprises some people, says Ethan Staats, an Atlanta-based financial adviser for Morgan Stanley. 
 
In fact, Medicare doesn’t cover longer term skilled nursing or rehabilitative care, hearing aids, eye exams and most dental care. A couple who retire at 65 need an average of $220,000 to cover out-of-pocket medical expenses over the course of their retirement, according to Fidelity Investments — and that doesn’t even count the costs of having to go into a nursing home, which Medicare doesn’t cover under most circumstances. A semiprivate room in a nursing home costs a median of roughly $77,000 a year and living in an assisted living facility costs $42,000 a year, according to 2014 data from Genworth.
 
Given how little most people have saved for retirement, many retirees are likely to struggle to afford the health care they need. And some are already feeling the strain of these expenses. Nearly one in four retirees say they’ve had trouble paying for the medications that they or their spouse needed; 21 percent say they’ve had trouble paying for health insurance premiums, 21 percent for medical bills, 19 percent for long-term care and 18 percent for preventative services, according to the NPR/RWJF/Harvard survey.
 
6. We’re Coming After Your Jobs
 
The percentage of workers 65 and older who are in the labor force has risen from 11.5 percent in 1992 to 18.5 percent in 2012 and is projected to hit 23 percent by 2022, according to Census Bureau data.
 
That’s a trend that’s likely to continue as the population ages. According to a 2013 survey by AARP of 1,500 American workers ages 45 to 74, about 72 percent of older Americans say they plan to work in retirement, with 29 percent of that group saying they plan to work part-time mainly for interest or enjoyment sake, 23 percent for the income it provides and 13 percent so they can start their own business or work for themselves.
 
For some younger workers, this isn’t good news, because many employers prefer older workers. A 2012 survey of more than 500 hiring managers by HR consulting firm Adecco found that companies were about three times as likely to hire a worker 50 and older than they were to hire a millennial (defined as someone born between 1981 and 2000). Among the traits they attributed to older workers were that they were more reliable and more professional.
 
Such findings aside, age discrimination remains alive and well in the workplace. According to a study published in the journal Ageing and Society in 2011, 81 percent of workers 50 and above had encountered at least one instance of discriminatory treatment in the workplace in the previous year; other studies indicate that some hiring managers show preference to younger hires.  
 
7. We Still Get Frisky
 
This may come as a shock to the younger generation, but your grandma and grandpa likely still get it on. While men and women ages 57 to 72 have less sex than their younger counterparts, they’re still having sex. Nearly three in four men and about half of women in the age group report that they are sexually active, having sex an average of about four times a month, according to a study published in 2011 in The Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences.
 
All that frisky behavior sometimes has negative consequences. While rates of sexually transmitted diseases are still much higher among younger than older Americans, the 55-and-over set saw an uptick in infection rates for some sexually transmitted diseases between 2007 and 2011, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Even HIV is becoming a problem for older Americans: 19 percent of the 1.1 million people living with an HIV infection in America are 55 or older, and 5 percent (or 2,500) of the new HIV infections in 2010 were from this age group, according to the CDC.
 
8. We’re Planning to Move In With Our Kids
 
More than 43 million adults in America care for someone 50 or older, according to the National Center on Caregiving. What’s more, the proportion of adult children providing personal care and/or financial assistance to a parent has more than tripled over the past 15 years, according to insurer MetLife.
 
While most care recipients live in their own homes (58 percent), one in five lives with their caregiver, usually in a spare room in the home. Wherever the retiree lives, caregiving can be a financial drain on the provider, not only because the care and medications cost them thousands of dollars, but because it can impact their careers over the long-term.

For the average woman 50 or older caring for an aging parent, the amount of lost wages due to leaving the labor force early or reducing work hours totals $142,693 over the duration of the caregiving; for men, that number is $89,107 — and that doesn’t include their lost Social Security benefits, which in both cases total over $130,000, according to a MetLife survey.

 
Making matters worse, many caregivers take a dual financial hit, as they care both for their parents and their children. According to a 2013 survey from the Pew Research Center, 15 percent of Americans ages 40 — 59 say they have provided financial support both for a parent 65 and older and for a child within the past year; that’s up from 12 percent in 2005.
 
9. That Big Hawaii Trip? It’s More Like a Pipe Dream
 
Nearly six in 10 American retirees say that travel is one of their top two dreams for retirement, according to a 2013 study by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. But while they lust after frequent trips to far-flung locales in retirement, the reality is much different for most.

About 59 percent of older workers say they plan to travel more in retirement, according to the NPR/Harvard/RWJF survey. But only 31 percent actually do so. In contrast, 34 percent of retirees say they take fewer trips than they did in the five years before retiring.

 
There are many reasons that retirees can’t just jet off to far-flung locales, including financial constraints. One in four retirees say one of the top things they’d change about their retirement is that they would have saved more for travel, the Transamerica survey revealed.

Lowenthal notes that health issues, especially those that limit mobility or cause aches and pains, may make travel “less comfortable and more trouble than it’s worth,” while others, like incontinence, are embarrassing. She also notes that spending time with grandchildren, another goal for many retirees, often competes for time and money with more ambitious travel plans.

 
10. We’re Scam Magnets
 
Each year, older Americans get bilked out of billions of dollars, thanks, in part, to scammers who take advantage of the elderly’s high rates of dementia and often poor health, which sometimes leave them less able to make smart financial decisions. A study published in 2011 by MetLife estimated that financial abuse costs older Americans at least $2.9 billion each year.
 
Most victims of such fraud are between 80 and 89, live alone and need some kind of health or personal care help from another person, the study found, and women are nearly twice as likely as men to be victims of elder financial abuse. A little over one-third of the cases of fraud were perpetrated by family, friends and neighbors. According to data released in 2013 by the Federal Trade Commission, some of the most common fraud types against people 60 and up were telemarketing scams (17 percent); fake sweepstakes, gifts and prizes (8 percent); and government impostor scams (8 percent).
 
No matter what the scam or who the victim is, one thing is clear: Financial fraud against the elderly can have life-altering, negative consequences.

The MetLife study points out that elder financial abuse “increases rates of depression among elders.” Plus, it makes people feel shame, Lowenthal says: “They feel they ‘should have known better’ or ‘shouldn’t have trusted’ the person who victimized them.” Or as Lombardo put it, becoming a victim of a scam “puts you in the mind-set of ‘I am old, frail and a victim.’” And, in turn, “whatever the label we put on ourselves, we often act as if that is real.”

 

Catey Hill is a freelance personal finance writer, who has written for Next Avenue, The Wall Street Journal, SmartMoney, Worth, MarketWatch.com, Forbes.com and others.

http://www.nextavenue.org/article/2015-01/10-things-retirees-wont-tell-you?utm_source=na_socialmedia&utm_medium=na_socialmedia&utm_campaign=na_socialmedia

Jane Fonda On Her ‘Strained’ Relationship With Fashion~ Jamie Feldman

Jane Fonda already has best-selling exercise videos and an incomparable acting career under her belt. Now, at the age of 77 (yes, really) she has another title to add to the list: fashion icon. 

Fonda stuns on W Magazine’s June 2015 cover in a Giambattista Valli dress and cape. Inside, she shows off her famous figure in the likes of Lanvin and Nina Ricci, and while she looks perfectly at home in the designer duds, she doesn’t necessarily feel that way. “It’s a hoot that, at my age, people are calling me a fashion icon,” she said.

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In fact, when it comes to style, Fonda admits it started out as an afterthought. “Truthfully, my relationship to fashion has always been strained. When I was starting out as an actress in New York, I worked as a model because I needed to pay for acting classes. But I didn’t have what it took to be a model. I hated all the emphasis on how I looked, and I never paid much attention to clothes.” 

jane

Fonda can rock just about anything (remember that green Balmain jumpsuit from the 2015 Grammys?) with the confidence and sophistication of a true fashion icon, whether or not she thinks so.

Head to W Magazine to see the entire interview, and be sure to pick up your copy of the magazine, which hits newsstands June 2. 

fonda 3

When You Don’t Like Yourself ~ Alex Lickerman M.D.

Some people have the misfortune to have been born to abusive parents who belittled them and prevented them from developing a healthy self-esteem. Others are born predisposed to view themselves in a negative light because of their physical appearance, a disability, or for no reason anyone, including themselves, knows. Research has consistently supported the notion that it’s difficult to be happy without liking oneself. But how can one learn to like oneself when one doesn’t?

WHAT PART OF OURSELVES DO WE DISLIKE?

 

People filled with self-loathing typically imagine they dislike every part of themselves, but this is rarely, if ever, true. More commonly, if asked what specific parts of themselves they dislike, they’re able to provide specific answers: their physical appearance, their inability to excel academically or at a job, or maybe their inability to accomplish their dreams. Yet when presented, for example, a scenario in which they come upon a child trapped under a car at the scene of an accident, that they recoil in horror and would want urgently to do something to help rarely causes them to credit themselves for the humanity such a reaction indicates.

Why do self-loathers so readily overlook the good parts of themselves? The answer in most cases turns out to relate not to the fact that they have negative qualities but to the disproportionate weight they lend them. People who dislike themselves may acknowledge they have positive attributes but any emotional impact they have simply gets blotted out.

THE SOURCE OF SELF-LOATHING

Which makes learning to like oneself no easy task. Many people, in fact, spend a lifetime in therapy in pursuit of self-love, struggling as if learning a new language as an adult rather than as a child.

Before such a change will occur, however, the essential cause of one’s self-loathing needs to be apprehended. By this I don’t mean the historical cause. The circumstances that initially lead people to dislike themselves do so by triggering a thought process of self-loathing that continues long after the circumstances that set it in motion have resolved, a thought process that continues to gain momentum the longer it remains unchallenged, much like a boulder picks up speed rolling down a mountain as long as nothing gets in its way. For example, your parents may have failed to praise you or support your accomplishments in school when you were young—perhaps even largely ignored you—which led you to conclude they didn’t care about you, which then led you to conclude you’re not worth caring about. It’s this last idea, not the memory of your parents ignoring you, that gathers the power within your life to make you loathe yourself if not checked by adult reasoning early on. Once a narrative of worthlessness embeds itself in one’s mind, it becomes extraordinarily difficult to disbelieve it, especially when one can find evidence that it represents a true account.

But a narrative is just that:  a story we tell ourselves. It may very well contain elements of truth—that we are unattractive, that we do fail a lot of the time, or that our parents didn’t find us all that lovable—but to proceed from facts such as these to the conclusion that we’re deserving only of our own derision constitutes a significant thought error.

THE TRUE SOURCE OF SELF-ESTEEM

The problem is that we common mortals can hardly avoid deriving our self-esteem from the wrong source—even those of us whose self-esteem is healthy. We look to what in Nichiren Buddhism is termed the “smaller self,” the parts of ourselves that seem better than those of others and to which we become overly attached. In other words, we ground our self-esteem in things about ourselves we perceive as unique: typically our looks, our skills, or our accomplishments.

But we only need to experience the loss of any one of these supportive elements to recognize the danger of relying on them to create our self-esteem. Looks, as we all know, fade. Unwanted weight is often gained. Illness sometimes strikes, preventing us from running as fast, concentrating as hard, or thinking as clearly as we once did. Past accomplishments lose their ability to sustain us the farther into the past we have to look for them.

I’m not arguing that basing our self-esteem on our positive qualities is wrong. But we should aim to base it on positive qualities that require no comparison to the qualities of others for us to value them. We must awaken to the essential goodness—to what in Nichiren Buddhism is termed our “larger self”—that lies within us all. If we want to fall in love with our lives—and by this I don’t mean the “we” of our small-minded egos—we must work diligently to manifest our larger selves in our daily lives. We must generate the wisdom and compassion to care for others until we’ve turned ourselves, piece by piece, into the people we most want to be.

In other words, if we want to like ourselves we have to earn our own respect. Luckily, doing this doesn’t require that we become people of extraordinary physical attractiveness or accomplishment. It only requires we become people of extraordinary character—something anyone can do.

A simple thought experiment supports this notion: think right now of your favorite person and ask yourself, what is it about them that attracts you the most? Odds are it isn’t their physical appearance or their accomplishments but rather their magnanimous spirit; the way they treat others. This is the key quality that makes people likable, even to themselves.

Treating others well, it turns out, is the fastest path to a healthy self-esteem. If you dislike yourself, stop focusing on your negative qualities. We all have negative qualities. There’s nothing special about your negativity, I promise you. Focus instead on caring for others. Because the more you care about others, I guarantee the more in turn you’ll be able to care about yourself.

If you enjoyed this post, please feel free to explore Dr. Lickerman’s home page, Happiness in this World(link is external).

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/happiness-in-world/201008/when-you-dont-yourself

Salubrious Saturday – Dove: Beauty and Self-Confidence

Dove is doing some great work with self-esteem. This latest campaign introduces a new beauty patch that is guaranteed to make the wearer feel better about themselves. In the end we learn a valuable lesson on what it truly means to be beautiful. Enjoy!

Boosting Your Self-Esteem

Of course it’s OK to have ups and downs in your feelings, but having low self-esteem isn’t OK. Feeling like you’re not important can make you sad and can keep you from trying new things. It can keep you from making friends or affect how hard you try at school.

Having strong self-esteem is also a very big part of growing up. As you get older and face tough decisions — especially under peer pressure — the more self-esteem you have, the better. It’s important to like yourself.

If you think you might have low self-esteem, try talking to an adult you trust about it. He or she may be able to help you come up with some good ideas for building your self-esteem.

Self-esteem can improve when you start trying things you thought were too hard and then do well at them, or when a parent, family member, or other adult encourages you, is patient, and helps you get back on track. When you start to do well, self-esteem will skyrocket!

Here are a few other things that you can try to increase your self-esteem:

  • Make a list of the stuff you’re good at. It can be anything from drawing or singing to playing a sport or telling a good joke. If you’re having trouble with your list, ask your mom or dad to help you with it. Then add a few things to the list that you’d like to be good at. Your mom or dad can help you plan a way to work on those skills or talents.
  • Give yourself three compliments every day. Don’t just say, “I’m so great.” Be specific about something good about yourself, like, “I was a good friend to Jill today” or “I did better on that test than I thought I would.” While you’re at it, before you go to bed every night, list three things in your day that really made you happy or that you feel thankful for.
  • Remember that your body is your own, no matter what shape, size, or color it is. If you are worried about your weight or size, you can check with your doctor to make sure you’re healthy. Remind yourself of things about your body that are cool, like, “My legs are strong and I can skate really well.”
  • Remember that there are things about yourself you can’t change. You should accept and love these things — such as skin color and shoe size — because they are part of you.
  • When you hear negative comments in your head, tell yourself to stop. Remind yourself of things you’re good at and if you can’t think of anything, ask someone else! You can also learn a new skill (for example, karate, dance, a musical instrument) so you can feel good about that!

By focusing on the good things you do and all your great qualities, you learn to love and accept yourself — the main ingredients for strong self-esteem! Even if you’ve got room for improvement (and who doesn’t?), knowing what you’re good at and that you’re valuable and special to the people that care about you can really help you deal with growing up.

Part of growing up is learning to focus on your strengths and to accept and work on your weaknesses — and that, in a nutshell, is self-esteem!

Source: http://kidshealth.org/kid/feeling/emotion/self_esteem.html#

TED Talk Tuesday – Lessons from the Mental Hospital: Glennon Doyle Melton

Such an amazing talk that took so much courage and vulnerability to give. We all struggle with connection and compassion. We all struggle to find belonging and a sense of peace. Sometimes those struggles are to weighty. Glennon Doyle Melton, a recovering “number” (she used alcohol, food, and drugs to numb her pain) talks about her journey from cape-laden pretender to fully present human being. This talk is heartwarming and encouraging. Enjoy!

 

“Everyone was worthy simply because she existed.”

Salubrious Saturday – Can Stress Actually Kill You?

Oh boy, one of the biggest problems people face today is stress. I know I have it and I know you have it but do we really understand it. Here is a great video on stress, what it really is, and how it influences your health and life. The best way to beat stress…positive social interactions. So make some friends, go for dinner, and have a great time. Enjoy!!