A lot of people are living past the biblical “three score and ten” years these days and this opens up a lot of possibilities with a few problems thrown into the mix. I have a fifteen-week project running to explore the ways that people can prepare for and live into their seventies (and beyond) to make it a decade of achievement and fulfillment, even with reduced energy and other things that happen.
My project is to motivate some other people to be involved so it becomes a team-building project with a core of helpers producing a range activities. These will include focus groups to discuss the kind of things that can be done individually and by groups and institutions to enhance the experience of the 70s. Another strand will be workshops run by consultants along ontological lines (way of being) to generate insights and practices which generate balance and harmony across all areas of life – health, fitness, intellectual and cultural interests, travel, family and friends and spirituality.
I am involved in this as a coach in a Self Expression and Leadership Program run by Landmark in Sydney. I coach a small group of people and they all have projects of their own.
For example a woman is working as a financial consultant with small businesses. Her project addresses the situation where a very high proportion of small business owners fail or alternatively stagger to retirement and proceed to Centrelink because they never did well enough to avoid the pension in old age. Her project is to encourage entreprenneurs to be alert to the pitfalls if the business is not thriving and be prepared to change direction or get out smartly if things are not working.
A young man of Middle Eastern descent supports the Canberra Raiders and his project is to build the support base of Canberra and the NRL in his part of western Sydney and especially among his friends and relations to promote integration.
A middle-aged lady has taken on making connections in her family around the world. After a busy life focussed on her immediate family, working and home-making, she discovered that different branches of her family have lost contact and her mission is to rally her generation to get the cousins in touch with each other before the possibility is lost.
Sometimes theses projects function mainly to develop the people in the course but over the years many have taken on a life of their own, like the R U OK program and a large number of charitable, educational and community development programs worldwide.