We asked seniors…

What does happiness mean to you?


“I’m very happy because I’ve made friends that are still living,” O’Hare said. “I like to go out and speak in schools about motivation.” – George O’Hare, 81-year-old

“Contentment as far as I’m concerned comes with old age … because you accept things the way they are,” she said. “You know that nothing is perfect.” – Ilse Siegler, 84-year-old

Approaching 80, after a tumultuous life, I find “happiness” such a hackneyed idea. Energy is all, it is what defines what and how much we are DOING. The rest is rationalization. – Bonwise Davis-year-old

We are in our mid 70s and live clear across the country from our children. They are still young enough to have a few more moves left in their lives. But when we are no longer able to care for ourselves, we do not want them to have to deal with long-distance management. That means we have to be prepared to have the energy for a move that we hope does not take place until we are well into our 80s. Knowing that, I try to make learning new things and meeting new people high priorities in my life. I cultivate folks who are in their 80s and 90s today, and living the life I hope to live in 15-20 years. – Surib Durham-year-old

My comment solely reflects my life experience and is not intended to draw praise. To wit, I am 83 years old and was working in a Civil Service job till I was 81. Before that I worked for IBM till I was 64. After I retired from IBM I took up swimming to keep in shape, which I still do. (I was written up with the likes of Jack Linane in a book entitled “It’s never too late.” This book contains stories of people who took up vigorous exercise late in life. So speaking personally, what older people like to keep happy is: Keeping active both mentally and physically. – Robert Katz – 83-year-old

So this explains it. I really need my family and a few buddies. Thats what makes me happy. I don’t need things. I need a few brief kind smiles or nods. My aging world is rather silent punctuated by brief moments of kindness. I’ve come to enjoy the silence and kindness. – Tom Hirons – 82-year-old

Yeah, I’m surprised that as I’ve aged I enjoy peace and quiet more and more. – Ringo – 80-year-old

As an older person of 72 years, I believe too many people in my generation get too hung up on the issue of security. You can’t get them to do anything or travel anywhere because they fear that they may get sick or suffer some other great inconvenience . Consequently they lead very boring lives until the inevitable end comes. Your age should only be a limiting factor if it has disabled you. In the last 15 years I have travelled to Europe numerous times, exchanged houses in other countries several times and I still work two days a week as a pharmacist in a very busy pharmacy. It all comes down to having a positive attitude regardless of your age. – Aaron Adams – 80-year-old

At age 65 I finally have the time and resources to do the exciting new things that I couldn’t do when I was younger. I want the last third of my life to be adventurous, with new learning and new experiences. Although I have to admit, spending time with my grandchildren is when I really follow my bliss. We don’t have to prove a thing at our age, but we still like to have fun! And learning new things, having new experiences is good for the brain. – Grandmom Mary – 80 -year-old

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