Saturday, November 26, 2016

The "Old" Business

Being special is great. Much business buzz has long focused on the "Boomers". Where do you think all the mail comes from? And the phone calls offering insurance, pills, and computer help. Someone needs to explain the line between customer and victim. Please let me go back to being a normal consumer!
This trend is not going to change any time soon but will increase as more aging people find their way to the "golden years". Tell all those slick marketers that the gold in "golden years" is not their gold but belongs to those who lived for it. And it is not money in the bank, it is memories and peaceful relaxation. Think of the attack of money grabbers in terms of these categories:
  1. Organized big business
  2. Criminals
  3. Tag-a-long entrepreneurs (some who sincerely want to help)

The Tag-A-Long entrepreneurs have been looking for an easy way to make money. They need a big market with lots of cash. Yep, the 50 and older crowd is big and many have lots of money. With the right ad copy the money will flow from the old guys to the eager entrepreneur. Fact is, the old guys, the easy target market, have been to more than one flea market and usually don't bite even for slick marketing.
Very little advice for dealing with these actors because they are easy to spot and easy to ignore. Seldom do their products make sense and in a week or two they will be pitching a different product. Feel sorry for them but don't worry about their welfare, eventually they will figure out a proper way to support themselves.

Criminals come in a dizzying array of products, methods, and people types. In the wild, predators watch for the weak and slow. They know this is their easiest choice for a quick and safe dinner. Such an analogy accurately summarizes the product and service offerings of this category of business. Many lack products or services and only give a description of what they promise. Compelling and enticing promises geared to those who expect fair and honest treatment. They make the purchase process very easy and the product perfectly fit a huge need. Once they have the money they vaporize.
Nice Young Lady?Best advice here is to seek a trusted second opinion before opening your wallet. They expect that you will do this and have tactics to convince you to purchase now. Be skeptical, always… Always be skeptical… How else can I say it, only trust people you know and of those only the ones you know you can trust. Unfortunately, people who frequently fall victim to these tactics are not reading this blog and if they are will believe that the compelling nice young lady on the phone/text/email is their friend. If you know someone who has too much compassion for their own good please make every opportunity to educate them.

Organized Big Business, those legitimate companies with wonderful track records, companies who provide products and services used everyday far and wide, has one objective and that is to make money. Perhaps exceptions exist but business by nature is not a charity. Forget the branding and flowery descriptions, they are set up and designed to attract customers and generate a profit. They are not evil nor criminal. They have selected a product or service designed to fill a genuine need and most do a marvelous job of meeting those needs. Some even do so at reasonable prices. Here are some thoughts to keep in mind when shopping their marketplace.
  1. What are values and principles you consider ultimately important? Look for examples of how the company, their products, and their staff exhibit the values and principles you prefer. If your examination does not find any examples then consider looking elsewhere. If you encounter any "red flags" then consider these the tip of the iceberg and run the other way.
  2. Regarding senior living choices where a person sells, gives away, and throws away most of their "stuff" and moves in. Often this person has no recourse to move again if they are dissatisfied. Moving is hard and expensive even when it is possible and thus a barrier to change an undesirable situation. The inducements to move are designed to make the move in easy and the change may be a good choice. Think it through. Unless the move is an absolute necessity consider adjustments for staying put. Moving is a major decision with enormous consequences. Don't be swayed by rent reductions, moving assistance, or any inducements designed to turn your head. Only move if you want to and you gain more than you lose.
  3. Will the product you are purchasing continue to be what you are buying or will it undergo a change? For example, you like the staff of the residence. How much turnover does this company experience? In most cases the staff will undergo radical change within a relatively short time. You might or might not like the new staff. Make certain that the fine print matches what you understand from the description you have heard or received. Read the contract or whatever describes the legal arrangement. A match with what you understand is great otherwise you must decide if the reality is acceptable.

The business attitude is that "Boomers" and all seniors are a lucrative and easy market. That brings hordes of get-rich-quick businesses who are willing to promise what you want to hear. What ever they may promise, they are intent on making money and that means you will be giving them your money. Remember to be as smart with deciding how to spend it as you were when accumulating it.  

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Where you can find "Voices From My Heart"

Voices From My Heart is now available at Amazon both in book form and in Kindle form.

To Buy my book Voices From My Heart through Amazon at (click here) Amazon Book and Kindle versions


 Cost of the book is $15

Growing older brings continual changes such as health concerns, safety at home, aging in place, moving, adjusting, loss and grief. Voices From My Heart is a series of essays about tender moments with seniors validating what they are going through and offering suggestions and solutions for concerns that they face. Emotion accompanies every decision and event that happens in our lives. I have shared my words with many of my patients, watched them relax and then begin to heal emotionally if not physically. Continuing to find joy, growing where you are planted, reaching out to others, smiling through the losses, finding new purposes, and living with purpose to the end are all talked about in this book. Because I cannot look every senior in the eye, and sit by the side of each one and hold their hand, it is my hope that this book will touch the lives of many more than I will ever see face to face. 

Scheduled Book Readings and Signings
December 12, Monday at 2:30 PM at The Oaks of Lebanon, 621-W Oak St in Lebanon, Oregon 

Coming in January - Bonaventure  of Albany - 420 Geri Street Albany, OR 97321
Soon to be Scheduled for Book Reading and Signing
The Regent Independent Retirement living - 440 NW Elks Drive, Corvallis, OR 97330
Stoneybrook Lodge - 4700 SW Hollyhock Circle, Corvallis OR
Heritage Plaza 1560 Davidson Street SE, Albany, OR

How Does It Feel To Be Old.

As a nurse working with people older than myself, I hear it time after time. "I don’t belong in a place like this. These people are old. They are in wheel chairs and using walkers”. It didn’t matter what type of senior facility it was, they felt they did not belong. The last person I heard say it was sitting in a wheel chair, but he did not see himself like the others in wheel chairs. We still feel like the same person we were when we were young. My favorite patients are 89 years old and above. They are healthy. They usually take very few medications. They look younger than they are. They are active. They have seldom had anything seriously wrong with them…until now. This may have been an elective surgery, or they had a misfortunate fall, but suddenly they are not bouncing back and recovering the way they always have. They are dismayed by the length of time it is taking them to feel “normal” again. This reminds me of the saying, “Inside every older person is a younger person wondering what happened.”

At the age of fifteen, I walked into a large bookstore and chose the first novel I ever purchased. I gave the cashier the 60-cent price and proceeded to read. This book remains special to me even now.  A Lantern in Her Hand, is the story of a woman’s life told through her own eyes beginning at eight years old until her death at eighty. I learned at the age of fifteen, while reading this book, that we are the same person, always, no matter if we are eight or eighty.

When her granddaughter asked her, How does it feel to be old, Grandma? she replied, “It doesn’t feel at all. People don’t understand about old age. I am an old woman…but I haven’t changed. I’m still me. They think we’re different…we old ones. The real person I am still has many of the old visions and longings. I’m fairly contented here in the old home… I’ve never grown tired of life as some old people do. I’m only tired of the aches and the pains and the inability to make my body do what I want it to do. I would like to live a long time yet…to see what can still be invented…to read the new things that will be written…to hear the new songs that will be sung…to see heavy foliage on all the new shrubbery…to see all the babies grow into men and women. You will find out when you get old that some of the realities seem dreams…but the dreams...the dreams are all real.” (Bess Streeter Aldrich)

I had a recent illness, lasting over a week and finally had to see the doctor. I realized that the doctor was looking at a sixty-year-old sitting on her table. I was still young, but she had to ask all the questions that were applicable to someone my age. I didn’t belong in a place like that. In other words, the questions she was asking, did not apply to this sixty-year-old. I was doing it. I was repeating the same words my patients repeat to me. How strange! That fifteen-year-old girl is now sixty. I am still the same person inside I have always been.

What to Do....
My advice...Eat well. Drink water. Move your body. Take fewer medications. Talk to others. Interact. You are still alive. Find Joy and Dream.