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Keep Up And Stay In The Loop

I hope you're feeling good right now. If you're not, I wonder if you know what's up around that? Sometimes we just don't feel our best, yet we can't put our finger on it. I know that's happened to me. It's not always something I ate (or didn't eat), or the fact that I haven't been outside for a walk in a while. What I do know is that it's about something that's causing stress in my life.

This week, several times, I noticed a specific stressful situation. I observed it in myself as well as some around me and it's something I've observed with my Dad. Let me tell you a little bit about him. He's 92 and going strong! It's wonderful talking to him on the phone. He hates the cold so he moved to Florida a few years ago. He lives in an independent senior complex where he has his own apartment and a

housekeeper once a week. Even though he has the sweetest little, modern kitchen, he loves that he can eat in the community dining room (he has no interest in cooking at this point in his life!). He still drives, although never at night because he knows that his vision isn't as good in the dark, however he can get around to the post office, barber, pharmacy, bank ... pretty much wherever he needs to go. My sister lives nearby and she often has him and some of his nonagenarian buddies over for dinner. As you can imagine, they all love those outings! He has his independence within a lovely, safe container. There's one area of his life, though, that really bugs him -- technology. He still has a flip phone, he hates his computer, and he pays all his bills through paper statements and the mail and he feels like he's getting further and further behind the times.

I get it. When I first went to nursing school in my 40's, my kids and I started using computers at the same time! It was a blessing in disguise. Soon after that I got my first cell phone and the march forward began. Sometimes I can hardly believe how much things have changed in only the last 25 years! I feel like I'm constantly on a steep learning curve. My kids have helped me keep up. They explain things to me about my iPhone, for example. Working in the medical field has forced me to stay abreast of many computer advances. My cross-country road trips have introduced a whole variety of "apps" to my world like Waze, Google Maps, and Podcasts and many more. It feels like there's something new to learn at least once a week and I've become very aware that if I try to ignore whatever is the latest tech variation, I'll be out of the "loop". Just recently I was going through my wallet to see if I had "exact change" to pay someone when they gave me their Venmo handle and I simply "sent" them the money. While adapting to some of this is a bit stressful initially, falling behind is worse.

A large part of our profound self-care is reducing our stress or at least finding ways to deal with it efficiently and calmly. Things move fast in the tech world and it's easy to want to drag your feet or even give up. Sometimes I feel like I'm being pulled kicking and screaming into this 21st century, but when I take a few deep breaths, acknowledge that I can't stop progress, and especially when I find someone to "teach" me, I feel so much better.

Whether you find a Millennial to show you the ropes or you sign up for a class, take the time to "catch up". Your stress level will probably drop and you'll feel so much better and isn't that the point of self-care?!?

Happy Healthy Habit Hump Day,


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About the Author




Barbara L Cummings, MS, RN

is a sassy Queen-ager whose mission is to co-create a happier, healthier life with and for others.

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