Loneliness in the Third Third of Life
You may have seen the recent report from the Surgeon General on a strategy for addressing the “epidemic of loneliness and isolation” in our country. I suspect that many of us reading this newsletter have struggled with loneliness in our lives. As the report points out, loneliness can have profound consequences not only for our emotional health, but also for our physical health and life longevity. If you are interested, you can read the full report HERE.
Last week in the Flourishing in the Third Third of Life class we discussed the well-regarded Harvard Study of Adult Development that has spanned over 80 years. Their conclusion is that the single most important factor to human flourishing is “Relationships! Relationships! Relationships!” That is consistent with brain research and, most importantly, with the teaching of Scripture.
All of this is good news for those of us at HP Pres. There are so many opportunities for us to combat loneliness and build relationships like attending a 9:30 am Sunday Class, signing up for a Discipleship Conversation, strolling with the new Walkie Talkies Walking Club, or attending one of our Third Thursday Luncheons. There is Ascent (men), Anchor (women), Community Groups, and a whole lot of serving opportunities to mention a few other opportunities.
In light of this “epidemic of loneliness and isolation,” I would encourage us to do two things:
- Be alert for folks around you who are struggling with loneliness.
- Be proactive in addressing the loneliness in our own life.
- There are plenty of opportunities to do both at HP Pres.
Seeking to flourish in the third third of life with you,
Pastoral Fellow – Discipleship