Purpose of life for elderly men

What is a man’s purpose in life?

There is a very good example to talk about men’s ikigai.Yuichiro Miura, the world’s oldest man who climbed Mount Everest three times at the ages of 70 and 75, was suffering from obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and gout in his 50s due to poor diet and lack of exercise. . However, he made up his mind that this should not continue, so he added weights to his legs and started training by climbing a nearby mountain.

At first, I was left behind by an 80-year-old elderly person, but after a year, I was able to run down Mt. Fuji. He also climbed Mount Everest three times.

In this example, even if you start something new at the age of 65, which is classified as an “elderly person,” you can recover your physical strength and energy until you achieve a feat that can be said to be the first in the world. It is a guidebook full of hope.

On the other hand, once an athlete in any sport loses his/her goal, he/she cannot escape physical and mental aging. And you can lose everything.

In this way, it can be said that the purpose of life for men, especially elderly men, is to continue to have goals in life no matter how old they are.

wet leaves problem

Do you know the word wet fallen leaves problem? Can you imagine a retired husband who has no hobbies and has too much free time, not only when he goes out for a short time, but also in his daily life at home, always following his wife? . This state is likened to how wet fallen leaves stick to each other and cannot be removed even if you try to shake them off. From the perspective of a man, it is called “wet and fallen leaf husband”, and from the perspective of a woman who is a wife, it is also called “husband’s stay-at-home stress syndrome” (although this is not the official name of the disease).

When I was in the prime of my working life, the man who was both the head of the family and the husband worked outside the house, while the wife who was the woman stayed at home to raise children and do housework. , It seems that the increase in free time for each other starts to increase the number of things to worry about, which causes the wife to feel stress.

Countermeasures against the problem of wet fallen leaves

As a countermeasure against the problem of wet fallen leaves, it is said that it is necessary for husbands, elderly men, to have hobbies or actively participate in society.

It is also a good idea for couples to have common hobbies. If you two go on a trip, that alone will increase the number of conversations. Also, if there are common hobbies, the husband will not only follow the wife, but there will also be situations where he can take the initiative. Having hobbies and participating in society are extremely important habits for elderly couples, before they become unpleasant existences like wet and fallen leaves.

When do elderly men find purpose in life?

According to the 2015 White Paper on the Aging Society published by the Cabinet Office, the highest number of men and women who feel a sense of purpose in life is spending time with family members such as grandchildren (48.8%).

Comparing women and men, women said “When hanging out with family members such as grandchildren (55.4%),” “When eating or chatting with friends and acquaintances (50.9%),” and “Eating delicious food.” At times (44.4%), I felt a sense of purpose in life. On the other hand, the majority of men answered that they were enthusiastic about their hobbies or sports (49.0%), followed by spending time with family members such as grandchildren (40.7%), spending time with their spouses (38.1%), and traveling (38.1%). 36.4%) said that they felt a sense of purpose in life (Graph 1).

From these findings, it can be seen that men find more meaning in life in doing what they like or spending time with their families, rather than spending time with friends and acquaintances. Also, while there are many men who say that spending time with their spouses is their reason for living, what about women who are wives? You also have to be careful about the “wet fallen leaves problem” mentioned above.

In addition to this, many men seem to find their life worthwhile when they are working, when they are doing community service or community activities, or when they are devoting themselves to their studies or education2) .  Perhaps it is precisely because they have worked so hard for their families that they find social participation such as work and social service so rewarding.

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