Wellness & Well-being Highlights
Week of July 3, 2023
This week’s edition of our Worker Wellness & Well-being blog consists of topics from how poverty negatively impacts a child’s brain to the benefits of hypnotherapy to the recent US Supreme Court’s rulings on colleges & affirmative action and student debt relief. Today, I wish to shed some light on the issue of the “graying” of America. This week I include no less than 4 articles touching on aspects of how grandparents’ duties have changed over the past couple of decades. In addition, why some people into their 80s choose to continue to work. Addressing the former, I have made it no secret in this weekly blog the extent of our country’s opioids crisis. One consequence is that more and more grandparents—who once viewed their retirement years as time for worldly travels, rest, and relaxation—are now stepping up to fill in as parents to their grandchildren. Far too many parents in the 25-54 year range have lost their lives to what I referred to as a “pandemic” long before we knew what COVID-19 was. With respect to the latter, on one hand, the instability of global markets, climate change, epidemics, and a lack of defined pension plans in most workplaces in the past 3 decades have been cause for many older Americans not having sufficient funds to live comfortably in retirement. Thus, finding PT work in retirement is a means of survival vs a need to feed a hobby. While, on the other hand, there are those of us who are able to seek opportunities to contribute. Beyond the ultruism of paying it forward, research suggests that staying active (i.e., consulting, volunteering, etc.) builds/maintains social connections which can help stave off loneliness and early death. With an apparent worker shortage, it seems to make sense for firms to recruit and accommodate retirees to assist in filling in the gaps. To this end, retirees can offer more than institutional knowledge…they can also serve as role models. As my dear friend Dr Doug Swanson recently remarked, “This is the first time in US history that we have 5 generations in the workforce at the same time.” To me, that sounds less like a death knell and more like opportunity knocking!
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