#147 Talk with an Old Person

Sharing 365 life lessons, tips, or hacks; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.


Talk with an Old Person

So, perhaps the first thing we need to do is define ‘old person’. For the sake of this post, we’ll say that ‘old’ is 80+. So many of the conversations I have with individuals in this age bracket end up at some point with an expression that they feel invisible to society-at-large. Seemingly, our culture doesn’t openly value the old-old. If you happen to live in a community where there is a significant retirement population, you may have noticed that there are a lot of active, contributing old people these days.

I have a number of clients through the years that are older than 80…  people who drive, live independently, and feel the pain of being dismissed by their family and community. And yet, they are generally people with a lifetime of amazing experience, accumulated knowledge, and sound perspective. There must be something that you are curious about – even if it’s how they made the transition from big band music to rock & roll – or did they?

If your grandparents are still living, when was the last time you just sat down and asked them questions about their own life? Research tells us that recounting memories in our late life increases overall life satisfaction. It turns out that a ‘life review’ can be very helpful in allowing us to see that there were meaningful and contributory moments. Grab a pen and begin asking questions about your ancestral history – if for no other reason than to know it for yourself.

If your grandparents are not living, consider adopting an elderly person – at least for an hour or two. The conversation you have may be the highlight of that individual’s life. As a volunteer in a nursing home, with Hospice, or in the hospital, you’ll have an opportunity to talk with as many elderly people as you have the breath for. If volunteering isn’t your thing or if you are cramped for time, just make the time to engage with an old person the next time you see them in a line, at a restaurant, or shopping for groceries. Find a way to acknowledge their presence and listen carefully for a reason to validate their existence.

Doing this one little thing will enrich your life more than you can imagine. There is great joy in watching someone’s face light from the understanding that you ‘saw’ them. There is great learning to be done when you take time to listen to accumulated wisdom. And, there is great joy in giving of yourself in the most unassuming moments. All this because you made an effort to …

Talk to an old person.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below

#317 of 365 Ways to live Easier, Happier, & More Productive

Sharing a daily life lesson, tip, or hack; the things that make life easier, happier, and more productive. I hope you’ll follow along and find them helpful too.


Find a great hairdresser

How many times have you seen a photograph of yourself and lamented about your hair? How many days do you glance in a mirror and feel a slight sinking feeling because your hair just isn’t how or where you want it to be? Have you ever browsed a series of photos, realizing that you’ve had the ‘same look’ for waaayy too long?

Hair is an important part of our overall appearance – unless of course you have none. One look at a photo of DT boarding Air Force One on a windy day is all we need to understand the significance of good hair. A good cut, good color, and the appropriate style for the shape of our face can make a great difference in how we perceive ourselves – and apparently… how others perceive us.

Using those parameters for good hair will typically involve a good – no… great, hair stylist. Unfortunately – finding one often means visiting several and experimenting a bit. But… it’s just hair and anything that happens to it (outside of catastrophe) will ‘grow out’, be it length, layers, or colors; so be brave!

I was often directed to books of styles and asked to choose one – my stylist would then accommodate my request by cutting, curling, or coloring my hair to match the picture I provided. The one MAJOR problem with this method is that my face never matched the photo. Had I cut a few of those styles out and tried to visualize them on my face, on my body – I might have saved months of regrowth time and hundreds, if not thousands of dollars – over time. Today at least, we can use Photoshop to try this method of style selection, or…

We could let the professional use their best judgment after they consider our hair texture, patterns, and face shape; not to mention the amount of time/money/energy it may take to sustain the style! Finding a great hairstylist may take time and money. The dude I’ve been using for 13 years now is NOT cheap and from time to time I have allowed other people to cut – thinking they could just follow ‘his’ lines – but NO! It’s never the same and I finally conceded that I’d rather drink less Starbucks and have him do the cutting. The trade off it totally worth it! Some things in life are just priceless so do yourself a favor and …

Find a great hairdresser.

I love hearing your thoughts and ideas. Please share in the comments below.