My great Dad (RIP) passed on in 2004. He was a middle income earner, self-employed and a businessman. My Dad was a very hard-working man, who could always pull out his best while doing something. So, I call him a great man not because he invented a micro-computer chip but because in his semi-illiteracy and a flock of other hardships, he managed to provide for us all the basic needs a growing child would wish for. Notably, a descent education in relatively good schools by our area standards which was a privilege of the rich back then: but we got it.
A very hard-working man was my Dad. And that was all he was when it came to working. I can hardly say he was a smart-working man. This approach towards work – hard working only compared to working smart, in addition to other factors in one’s life which comes in as you grow older, greatly affected my Dads’ last years on earth. I was well mature by his time of departure, as I had graduated from University then, and I had a job already. I think I knew – though not perfectly well, what he was going through because we used to talk.
From that nasty experience, I think preparing for my old age days better is the least I can do for myself. Well, I think everyone can. Oh, “yes we can.” If you have ever watched your loved one in a sorry state during the late years of their lives, then you don’t have to wait to get there before starting to prepare.
These are some of the better ways to prepare for old age and enjoy your evening years.
1. Invest in passive incomes
A passive income, in plain terms is the type of income whereby money comes to your pocket or bank account without you necessarily having to work for it at that particular moment. But, you must have worked to put in place measures first to bring this income. The opposite of passive income is earned income whereby at least your presence, time and energy are required while working to earn the money. Considering only these three factors: presence, time and energy, as you grow old your energy levels will definitely deteriorate which in turn will affect your presence and eventually time leading to less income and ultimately to no income. Never mind that there are so many other factors which might affect your income levels during old age apart from the three above.
For a passive income venture well prepared and placed, you continue earning even more, even if your physical energy is running low. It was very unfortunate for my lovely Dad that he had very few passive income ventures bringing in very little money. Worse still, the ventures were not well organized.
Examples of passive income ventures may include; real estates, writing books, commissions, affiliate sales, stock dividends, bonds, rental incomes, interest on savings or investments and many others.
It’s imperative to choose early what passive income venture suits you best and start on the preparations right away.
2. Buy or build yourself a nice home
East or west, home is best. Your house is your first and last home and if it is not a paradise, then trust me you won’t like it when you are above 50years. Having a nice home means you will not be worrying about relaxing your tied body when things are not going exactly the way you want them to. Different ailments which come in with old age can be easily confronted in a cozy environment while spaciously tending to your visitors – relatives and friends.
3. Engage yourself in worthwhile activities in the community
“Don’t just sit there, do something.” That is a quote I read when I was just about 12 years old. I have never taken it lightly. While having everything you need in your old age is very important, being idle in your community might not be so helping. You will be a boring old codger everyone wants to avoid.
You can offer free teaching and consultancy services in your field of expertise, be an active church member, community leader, your local community sports manager or team member, the list is endless depending on where you live and your physical well-being. As the quote says, “don’t just sit there, do something.”
4. Proper feeding
Make good feeding part of your daily routine. One of the most disturbing aspects of old age is failing health. And one of the main causes of health complications is poor or inappropriate feeding.
Bad feeding habits which include unbalanced diets, feasting on fast foods more than slow foods, and poorly prepared meals will make your old age a nightmare. Many disease fighting cells in your body system will be weaker and so healthy meals will come in handy to replenish your immunity.
Start practicing good healthy feeding. Insist on a balanced diet, slow foods in preference to fast ones, and well hygienically prepared meals. A nutritionist might be of handy to advise you which food groups to combine in what proportions in your diet depending on your body requirements. Eat well to a happy late life.
I keep arguing with my friends that, “exercising is as important as eating” when they complain that they don’t have the time for exercising. How come that you have never missed a meal? Good feeding is as good as poor feeding if you just let yourself lie around idle all day after a heavy meal. In fact, the very good food taken in will be the same to harm your body. Good exercising means putting your good food to proper use within your body system. This is the number one medicine for your body and if well arranged, it will keep a good distance between you and your doctor.
Join a healthy club near you if you can afford the charges. You want to talk to a physical training specialist first though, before embarking on any exercising program. If a healthy club is outside your reach for several good reasons, you can still realize your objective. You can jog in the evening or morning depending on your preference, jump a rope, or do some other physical gigs. Be sure to stretch out after any of the above.
Health club or not, make exercising a routine activity in your weekly program. It should be at least three times a week.
My great Dad, the one I started this article with, was spot-on on all the above but number 1. He did not keenly invest in passive incomes. But I took the lessons – good and bad, seriously. It’s my hope that you draw a few lessons from this article and welcome all the other tips I’ve not talked about above, which can help me make my late years wonderful.
This article is dedicated to my late Dad Mr. Lawrence Kimuli (RIP).