One of the contributors to cognitive decline in many retired seniors is a lack of purpose in life.
In this Lesson Dr. Johnson talks about the importance of purpose and the need to have a calling in life. A sense of purpose helps to get one’s blood going in the morning. And gives them a reason to get involved and “learn new things.”
His target audience in this presentation was professional, likely middle age adults for the most part, but in these lessons he talks about several principles important to developing a sense of purpose, and as you will see this concept and these principles can certainly be applied to seniors, as well as yourself. Moreover, he will share and model for you and approach to presenting concepts that you can then share with your clients to help them develop a purpose, that will help to maintain the vitality of their brain.
In session one you’ll learn that you just need to help them find something they can do, that others will benefit from. With that criteria in mind you can then help them brainstorm activities they might enjoy that would help in giving them a sense of purpose.
What Is Your Calling?
In session two Dr. Johnson asks a simple question that you can ask your clients. How would they rate themselves with regards to having purpose and meaning in their life? He then goes into more detail on several aspects of a sense of purpose and meaning.
Do You Have A Purpose In Life?
I think this gives you some idea of why purpose and calling are vital areas to think about.
Now let’s look at someone who really knows what her purpose in life is.
Would you like to have her dedication, enthusiasm, and energy? Purpose and meaning give that to you!
One way we can gain insight into this question of “Why am I on this earth?” is by taking a look at our innate gifts and talents. While mental health professionals are often interesting in diagnosing patients (“Does he have depression? Or perhaps anxiety?”), this tool is the reverse: How do diagnose your innate strengths.
Here is a link: http://viame.com
You can take the Values in Action survey there and it will show you your top (and, bottom!) strengths. Don’t worry about your bottom strengths. No one can be good at everything!
The folks at VIAME.COM want you to buy a $40 report. I’d suggest you do it. (I make NOTHING from that suggestion!) But if $$ are tight, just select the free version of the report, that rank orders your 24 strengths in your own individual order. Then download this handout on how to build your strengths. It certainly isn’t nearly as good as the fancy report, but it gives you a place to start.
There is a lot of evidence that only when you MAGNIFY your strengths will you feel healthier and happier. People who play to their strengths, who make a point of daily magnification of at least one strength, are people who will live happier, healthier, longer, and more impactful lives. When you are playing out your strengths, you are helping others to feel much more happy themselves. You make the world a better place. So pretend you have a big magnifying glass and you are going to hold it over one of your top five or six strengths for the next week. Do something with that strength every single day! If any big problem, or even a small one, comes up, first think, “How could I solve that problem using the strength I am working on this week?
One way people forget to build their strengths is when they have terrible or mediocre leadership at work.
Here’s something I want to share with you:
My position is that we take no particular position. The best spiritual practice is the one that elevates and energizes you, one you can stick with and practice consistently.
Think of spirituality as having a connection-with-infinite (or meaning and purpose), and also a quality of self-control. Spirituality practice generally involves some sort of personal renunciation, whether is it through fasting, or service to others, or some other practice. The Ego, the self-interest takes a back seat to a higher purpose.
Here is the video: Tell others what your thinking is.
Here’s a place to download a free book I wrote on terrible jobs and what you can do about them.
Now this is an incredible book, worth hundreds of dollars, or at least $5 or so. You get it free!
After you read it, reflect on this: In followup I found that in every case where an unhappy worker shifted to committed relationship with work, within a year a better job emerged.