Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Senior Citizens, blogging is a passport to good health

After reading You're never too old to blog. by GV Krishnan last month, I decided to write about my blogging experience. Actually it was a suggestion by GVK. I am going on 74 and have been actively blogging for seven months. That I thought was sufficient credential. I made the notes for the post, but put off the writing. Now I am preempted by The Hindu (September 2) which carried a Guardian Newspapers article ‘Senior blogger is a hit’.

The blogger is a Spaniard, Maria Amelia Lopez. Can you guess her age? Ninety-five! In the eight months that she has been blogging, her site has had over 340,000 hits from all over the world. This is something that only very few among the 93 million or so bloggers can hope for. Ms. Lopez, a great-grandmother, is an international celebrity today.

In his article GVK also referred to a piece by Hariharan Balakrishnan published by The Hindu. It is about a younger man, Eric Shackle who is only 88, who exhorts elders to shed the fear of the computer. He has published a web-book, Life Begins at 80.

Duly humbled by these inspiring stories let me narrate mine in all humility. I started using a computer as a glorified typewriter about seven years back, when I was 67. Initially the basics were explained to me. Along the way I picked up the more complicated operations on my own. It is an ongoing process of learning. Yesterday someone demonstrated the several uses of the computer ‘brush’. Just throw computer phobia out of the window. Once you start using a computer, you would love it.

Now about blogging. My inspiration was Jacob's Blog a successful one by Jacob Matthan a good friend from Bangalore days. I made a mistake though – registered four blogs! Can’t do justice to all of them. By God’s grace, this one has been reasonably successful.

Now, the reasons why senior citizens should start blogging. Keeping the mind and body active is your passport to good health. Blogging is a great mental exercise that is likely to help prevent/delay Alzheimer’s Disease (AD).

Another point is that elders would have so much of experience and memories that would be useful and interesting to others. Unless recorded, they would be lost forever. Blogging also enhances one’s self-esteem.

One can almost hear the protest, ‘But I can’t write’. You can, if you want. As you go along, the writing would improve. Use simple words, short, uncomplicated sentences, and go about it in a conversational manner. Write about anything that you wish.

Creating a blog is very simple and free – click on ‘Create Blog’ label on the top right hand corner of this page. Just follow the instructions.

Come on, get on to the bandwagon.


Also see:

Old age care

Old age care contd.


Jacob Matthan said...

my case it helped to recover a damaged portion of my brain.My alma mater blogs had inputs which helped to recall events and people which had vanished into a blackness.

I found that a short absence during July and August of this year made the return to blogging a real joy.

Thanks for the kudos, but I am nowhere near your standard in writing!

GVK said...

Eric,in response to my post, writes about a 107-year-old Australian who calls her blog a 'blob'.
And then we have a mumbai girl, Anandi,75, who's figures in MBP blog-of-the-day.
Too many links?

John clinton said...

Great Blog....You can also give your valuable answer in Health Questions.

Ronni Bennetty said...

Blogging is indeed an excellent activity for elders. Besides combining the best of active and passive thinking to keep one's mind sharp, it is a godsend for friendship.

As we get older, our social circles shrink. After retirement, we don't have the daily camaraderie of work colleagues. Families may live far away. Old friends die. And perhaps in time, it is not so easy to get out and about as we once did.

Real friendships form among bloggers, as strong over time as in-person friendships. And with blogging, one's new friends might be anywhere in the world.

I've been blogging about what it's like to get old for four years. I keep a blogroll of elderbloggers that has now reached a total of nearly 240 - people age 50 and older who blog and as discovering your blog and others you link to, obviously there are hundreds if not thousands I haven't discovered yet.

I've helped dozens of elders get started blogging and there is not one whose life has not improved immeasurably on many levels.

Maddy said...

keep going Abraham - you are doing good!!

Abraham Tharakan said...

Thank you Jacob, your comment is inspiring.
When I didn't find any new post on your blog for a couple of months I thought you are busy with your new book.

Abraham Tharakan said...

GVK, I've marked Anandi's blog for careful reading. I must congratulate her for taking up blogging at this age. It would be great if more elders follow her example.

Abraham Tharakan said...

Thanks John. I'm touched by your comment.
Shall keep a tag on Health Questions.

Abraham Tharakan said...

Ronni, that's an illuminating comment that you have made. It contains so many points that I hadn't thought of. In my next post I'm planning to request the readers to go through the comments carefully.
I may get back to you on some of the matters you have mentioned.

Abraham Tharakan said...

Thank you, Maddy. I appreciate the boost.

Beany said...

I found your blog through a food blog (http://myworksh0p.blogspot.com) as I was craving some good Malayalee food. I found the pictures from 60 years ago to be somewhat heartbreaking although when I lived in Bangalore it was very different (80-97). I suppose nothing is permanent.

I think its great that so many people blog, it probably makes them (including me) more tolerable as a person as they've gotten rid of the (perhaps) unappealing thoughts on their blog :)

Abraham Tharakan said...

Beany, thank you for your comment. After the old pictures, I have posted some more posts on Bangalore. Please do have a look.

Trust you have found some nice Kerala recipes. Once in a way I too publish recipes.