The very ‘purpose of living’ is to live happily and make the world, a happier place to live in
Change in our attitudes, changes everything. We will feel miserable if we think that way and elders think life as listless, pungent and devoid of energy and lead a dull life. But that’s not the truth, because you just need to change your perception. Elderly life is full of joy and devoid of all worldly responsibilities. Therefore, it should be enjoyed to the hilt. It is a phase of life that is a “Gift of God” for the purpose of enjoyment. This feeling changes whole perspective of looking at “elder life”.
One must appreciate that life is a journey with happiness as well as sorrows. Death is also inevitable. The best way to lead life is to enjoy our time at the planet as happily and gracefully as possible. “If winter comes, can spring be far behind”, should be the axiom we must believe in, whenever we are in problem.
5 Ways of looking at life that can make you happy include:
- Remain connected with all
- Remain active
- Find purpose of life
- Develop EQ & AQ
- Developing philosophical attitude
Remain connected with all:
Avoid withdrawal, seclusion and loneliness that are associated with old age and are the root causes of all emotional issues. So the best way is to remain connected with all including family members, childhood or school or college friends and former office colleagues, members of your housing society.
Senior citizen clubs are an excellent way of developing friendship with like-minded people. This “staying connected approach” is a powerful tool to release happy hormones in the body as the people find solace and happiness in company of others and often forget their own problems.
The only way to live life is to “work and work” both physically as well as mentally, whatever you can and till you can. Walking or cycling or undertaking light physical exercise like, yoga, etc., must be done a regular basis. Similarly, daily mental activities like meditation keeps mind calm as well as active.
Find purpose of life
Loss of passion in life is a common problem in elderly people. The only way to counter this, is to find a new purpose of life that will refuel the passion and direct activities. This is called ‘SECOND LIFE’ which is to live again with passion.
The type of purpose will significantly differ from person to person: it can be service to society, do all those things one could not do earlier like travelling, etc., or can be as simple as learning a new language or hobbies, etc. The whole approach of finding a purpose in life will invigorate the elderly to live longer to fulfill the goals.
Develop EQ & AQ
Elders must develop strong emotional quotient (EQ) that will allow them to manage their emotions and keep them calm amidst worst possible difficulties. Similarly, a strong adversity quotient (AQ) will enable them to rebound from all troubles and come back to normal self.
Developing philosophical attitude
One must accept that death is a reality, which may be of our near and dear ones and it might lead to “Salvation” or “Moksha” of the individual. One must, therefore, appreciate the reality and move on in life. While it is difficult to forget the memory attached with that person; but the hard fact is “One who is born is destined to die”.
Purpose of life is to lead a meaningful, useful, productive and socially sensitive life. We are born to take care of ourselves as well as others around us. It cannot happen if we are unhappy. Sadness does not lead to anything meaningful and can push into the darkness of depression and loneliness. Therefore, the very “purpose of living” is to live happily and make the world, a happier place to live in. Let us together lead a happy life.
Dr A K Sen Gupta is the Co-Founder and Chief Trustee of My Retired Life Foundation (MRLF). This article has been published in Free Press Journal (FPJ) on 26th February 2023, where he is a regular contributor. Dr Sen Gupta was the Director of S.P. Jain Institute of Management & Research, Mumbai, and Director & Mentor at SIES College of Management Studies, Navi Mumbai. He was a World Bank Consultant and instrumental in setting up the National Banking College in Ghana, Africa, and a Professor at the National Institute of Bank Management, Pune.