Q: As I grow older, I seem to be drifting into a more negative attitude rather than a positive one. I find myself complaining about a lot of minor things that I used to be able to shrug off.
How do you keep yourself positive despite the minor problems of everyday life? I'd like to turn my attitude around.
A: It's very common for seniors to find their mood gradually get worse. They are especially impacted by a variety of problems, such as health issues, lack of finances, lack of family support and other factors. When these pile up, it's easy to focus more on the negatives rather than the positives.
Whenever I find myself especially frustrated, I like to find humor in everything. Psychiatrists agree that sometimes laughter is the best medicine!
Here is a short list of funny observations about life, which will hopefully turn your mood around.
—You can only keep what you have to give away.
—If you dial a wrong number, you usually get an answer.
—Whenever you're shopping and you get in the shortest line, a cashier will always call for help.
—Whenever you're driving and you change lanes, the lane you were in begins to move faster than all.
—Whenever you decide to shower, the phone rings.
—When you finally find a product you really like, they quit making it.
—Nothing changes if nothing changes.
—The gifts you buy are never returnable.
—Whenever you are late for an appointment, you just can't find your car keys.
—Whenever you're expecting guests, your toilet overflows.
Copy this list, and add your personal experiences. We all experience these minor annoyances, but you can always change your attitude! Don't be afraid to laugh at yourself. — Doug
Q: I've always enjoyed social drinking, but I've lost my wife and many friends throughout the years. Unfortunately, I'm drinking a little more than I used to. I'm also drinking alone at home, which is a new habit.
What can I do to avoid falling into the proverbial bottle?
A: For many, drinking becomes much more dangerous after retirement, as you are less able to handle liquor and have more free time that you may not know how to fill.
Becoming aware of your bad habit is half the battle, so you can start to address it now.
Commit yourself to getting out of the house daily. People who spend all their time at home tend to drift toward repetitive behaviors, such as eating, watching TV and drinking.
It also helps to keep a minimum amount of alcohol stocked in the house. If it isn't on hand, you're less likely to drink mindlessly.
If you have too much time on your hands, find ways to fill it with new hobbies. Check out any local social groups of interest, and attend a meeting. Even if you don't like the group, you can meet the members and hopefully make some new friends! — Emma, Doug's granddaughter
Doug Mayberry makes the most of life in a Southern California retirement community. Contact him at [email protected] Emma, Doug's granddaughter, helps write this column. To find out more about Doug Mayberry and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.