5 Spiritual Practices for Aging Well

Buddhism offers 3 practices that increase our happiness as we grow older, and the author offers 2 more, supported by psychological research.



The Best Way to Handle Your Mental Decline Is to Confront It Head On

Much like contemplating death can neutralize the fear of it, it can help to acclimate yourself to the idea of losing professional skills before it happens.

To read an article in the Atlantic on this topic, click on the following link:  https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2020/06/how-get-comfortable-professional-decline/612637/

Why some older Americans are ignoring distancing guidelines and how to help

To read about why some are ignoring distancing guidelines, click on the following link:  https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/06/us/older-people-coronavirus-invincible-high-risk-wellness-trnd/index.html

For ideas on how to help older adults deal with loneliness while distancing, click on the following link:  https://www.cnn.com/2020/03/26/opinions/coronavirus-loneliness-epidemic-seniors-newton-small/index.html

Look for these articles in the April edition

The Discomfort you are Feeling is Grief

This is an excellent article from the Harvard Business Review about how all of us are struggling with (or will struggle with) grief related to the coronavirus epidemic.  The author adds a sixth stage of grief to the Kuebler-Ross 5 that we usually think of as relating to both death and grief.  His new set is: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance, and meaning.

Click on the following link to read the article:  https://hbr.org/2020/03/that-discomfort-youre-feeling-is-grief?utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=hbr&utm_medium=social&fbclid=IwAR2EuJCKW0CCS1s-xhVGhc80BfKZlWabKH_MnzF2TUExGKig-wWh8T_Uz7A

Ibasho: Elders as Social Capital

The concept of ibasho—a Japanese term meaning a place where one feels a sense of belonging and purpose, and is accepted as oneself—challenges prevalent perceptions about aging. The Ibasho approach recognizes elders as valuable assets to their community, empowering them to be active participants and changing the harmful outcomes created by society’s negative perceptions and expectations—social isolation, a loss of dignity and respect, and a sense of uselessness and irrelevance. This approach …(creates) a strong informal support system in which elders are the catalyst to strengthen social capital among community members of all ages.

Click on the following link to learn more:  https://ibasho.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/150318Elders-Leading-the-Way-to-Resilience-Conference-Version.pdf


Are you 60 or older? Have difficulty leaving home without help? If you are not receiving home-delivered meals, you may be eligible to participate in a University of Maryland Study on nutrition.

Research Participants Wanted – Can You Help or Do You Know Someone Who’d be Eligible to Participate?

From the Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, UMD

Project 1- Phone Interview 

The University of Maryland is conducting interviews and is looking for participants!  We are interviewing adults age 60+ who have difficulty leaving home without help, and who are NOT receiving home-delivered meals.  Those who participate will receive $10 for completing a 30-45 minute interview.  Interviews are on-going through Spring 2020 and take place over the phone.  The questions are about the foods that you eat, and how your health may impact your daily activities and the quality of your life.  If you are age 60+, have difficulty leaving home without help, and are not receiving home-delivered meals, please call Anna Vaudin at 301-500-9154, or email her at avaudin@umd.edu.  (Home-delivered meal applicants are still eligible for interviews if they have not started meal service yet!)  If you know someone who is eligible for an interview, please provide them with this information so they can get in touch!

Project 2  In-Person Interview

The University of Maryland is conducting interviews and is looking for participants!  Those who participate will receive $10 for completing a 45-60 minute interview.  The interview is about difficulties older adults may have with getting food and preparing food, the resources they choose to use to deal with these difficulties, and what impacts quality of life as we age.  Interviews will begin in February and can take place in your home or in a private community space of your choosing.  If you are age 60+ and are interested, please call Anna Vaudin at 301-500-9154 to set up an appointment, or email her at avaudin@umd.edu.

The science of psilocybin and its use to prevent sufffering

“Johns Hopkins is deeply committed to exploring innovative treatments for our patients. Our scientists have shown that psychedelics have real potential as medicine, and this new center will help us explore that potential.”
– Paul B. Rothman, M.D., Dean of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine. 

Scientists today are entering a new era of studying a truly unique class of pharmacological compounds known as psychedelics. Although research with these compounds was first started in the 1950s and ‘60s, it abruptly ended in the early 1970s in response to unfavorable media coverage, resulting in misperceptions of risk and highly restrictive regulations.

After a decades-long hiatus, in 2000 our research group at Johns Hopkins was the first to obtain regulatory approval in the United States to reinitiate research with psychedelics in healthy volunteers. Our 2006 publication on the safety and enduring positive effects of a single dose of psilocybin is widely considered the landmark study that sparked a renewal of psychedelic research world-wide.

Since that time, we have published further groundbreaking studies in more than 60 peer-reviewed articles in respected scientific journals. This makes Johns Hopkins the leading psychedelic research institution in the U.S., and among the few leading groups worldwide. Our research has demonstrated therapeutic effects in people who suffer a range of challenging conditions including addiction (smoking, alcohol, other drugs of abuse), existential distress caused by life-threatening disease, and treatment-resistant depression. Studying healthy volunteers has also advanced our understanding of the enduring positive effects of psilocybin and provided unique insight into neurophysiological mechanisms of action, with implications for understanding consciousness and optimizing therapeutic and non-therapeutic enduring positive effects.

At the Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research, researchers will focus on how psychedelics affect behavior, mood, cognition, brain function, and biological markers of health. Upcoming studies will determine the effectiveness of psilocybin as a new therapy for opioid addiction, Alzheimer’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome (formerly known as chronic Lyme disease), anorexia nervosa and alcohol use in people with major depression. The researchers hope to create precision medicine treatments tailored to the specific needs of individual patients.

To watch a TED talk on this topic, click on the following link:  https://hopkinspsychedelic.org/