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K-State Today

August 25, 2015

UFM class offers strategies to plan, adapt and maintain personal well-being for seniors

Submitted by Kayla Savage

The Making the Most of Our Senior Years: Life Reimagined workshop starts Sept. 15.

Life is filled with many important transitions, and one of the most important transitions is the opportunity to enjoy the senior years.

This five-session class will introduce strategies to plan, adapt and maintain personal well-being during the autumn years of life. These sessions will address the following objectives: 

  1. Managing transitions: Finding ways to adapt, make changes, reimagine and redefine a changing life situation.
  2. Reflection and recapitulation: Utilizing stories of importance in one’s life to define strengths, interests and meaning that in turn identify attributes that can be used in the future.
  3. Increasing and sustaining happiness: Engaging in activities that maintain physical, psychological and social well-being.
  4. Openness and creativity: Learning to create and take advantage of serendipity and the chance opportunities that are available in every day experience.
  5. Overcoming perceived barriers: The opposite of action in life is fear. Fear is most often a paralysis of the unknown; how to break those barriers.
  6. Maintaining social support: How we can maintain human connections with opportunities to converse and share thoughts and feelings with other people.
  7. Creating a life of meaning: We all leave the planet, so what is the most important legacy that we would like to leave behind?

The activities to achieve these objectives will include readings and brief presentations, demonstration of activities to exemplify the concepts, and group discussions and interactions to personalize these ideas to our own lives.

The workshop includes five sessions from 4-5:30 p.m. every Tuesday from Sept. 15 to Oct. 13 at UFM Community Learning Center for $9. Register by calling 785-539-8763. The class will be in the Conference Room on the second floor. Please notify UFM if you need physical accommodations.

Workshop leaders are retired K-State faculty, Fred Newton and Art Rathbun and current K-State faculty, Dan Wilcox.

Newton served as director of counseling and professor of education during the past 34 years at Kansas State University. Since his retirement in 2012, he describes himself as a gardener, photographer, traveler, sport psychologist, consultant, writer and part-time instructor.

Rathbun was employed at Kansas State University for more than 20 years as coordinator of the Biofeedback/Stress Management laboratory. He also is an ordained minister, counselor and horse breeder. Rathbun has taught a course on stress management/performance enhancement with both online and workshop formats for the past 20 years.

Wilcox is an assistant professor in special education, counseling and student affairs and Counseling in the College of Education. He is a licensed psychologist and has been a practicing counselor, workshop leader and guest speaker with a focus on positive psychology and the benefits of optimism, well-being and meaningfulness in life.