Now I admit, college doesn’t suit everyone due to finances, circumstances or even desire, but when was the last time you tried to learn something new? A dear friend of mine started taking piano lessons as an adult. She said she was encouraged by one of her second graders, and claims she is still a novice after more than thirty years! But she presses on!
There is something to be said about learning. Our minds are no different than any other muscle not used. When we stop “using” it, we “lose” it! Would you consider taking a painting class, learn to ride a bike, taking yoga, learn to weave or even run a marathon?
There are numerous studies proving over and over again that continuing education, regardless of age, increases cognitive activity and decreases the chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.1 As dedicated learners who recognize studying offers enhancement to their lives, seniors are discovering a new zest for life they had forgotten. There is a diversity of options available from gardening, to languages, writing, photography, performing arts and IT classes.
In the world of IT, seniors are discovering their unique talents, as they are committed to learning while not letting age barriers deter them! As these seniors learn, stimulating their minds, they are discovering (as numerous studies have proven) their physical and emotional health, also improves. They find value and worth they thought lost. Even seniors completely unfamiliar with the technical world, have found a niche they didn’t know existed and fill a space very much needed. So confident have some become in this field, even at age 80, 85 and early 90’s, they are able to teach classes to benefit others while others teach opera and lead art-history study groups.
Learning can be daunting for some. They are sure they are too old, not smart enough, don’t have time, or any other one hundred reasons for not challenging themselves.
As we get older, we do find time to be an enemy as we work, take care of children, domestic duties, and participate in civic activities or even volunteer. But we forget the more we know, the more we have to give. We cheat ourselves, and those around us who could benefit from our education, and our life experiences. We also cheat ourselves of becoming the person we were designed to be. We hide our given talents and gifts that are a thing of beauty to others. And what’s more, we lose the chance to discover our value and worth.
We all have something to give and we all have more to learn. I challenge you to reflect on your life this moment. In what ways could you educate yourself in your career field that would strengthen you as an employee? Is there a class worth taking that would enhance what you need to do day to day? Or simply what would you enjoy learning? Take the plunge! Discover your inner self and grow further into the beautiful person you are.