August 21 is National Senior Citizens Day. Recognized every year since President Ronald Reagan’s 1988 proclamation, this special day is a time to reflect on the role of senior citizens in our society—and to recognize the value seniors play in all of our lives.
At Bethesda Senior Living Communities, seniors are at the very heart of our world and our business, and not a day goes by that we aren’t thankful to have our senior residents and their families in our lives. In honor of the occasion, here are our top 5 reasons seniors are so important to our world today:
1. Seniors offer valuable perspective.
It’s popular in business today to talk about “diversity & inclusion,” and generational diversity is one important metric. It’s a cliché to talk about the wisdom of the elderly, but the reason senior citizens have so much wisdom is because they have a lot of experience. Experience is usually the best teacher, and seniors are poised to offer a unique perspective on any situation.
2. Seniors remember (and can teach us about) our community’s history.
We live in an age of information, where the most arcane details about the world seem to be a simple Google search away, but we also live in an age of forgetfulness. Our society’s written records and data sets can tell us a great deal, but there are nevertheless great gaps between the history books and even the recent past. Seniors have stores of history recorded in their memories.
3. Seniors hold the keys to our family’s history.
Many Americans have left the old family farms for the cities and suburbs, but as we’ve struck out for new opportunities, we’ve lost much of our family lore. Perhaps that’s why genealogy has become so popular—because people want to re-connect with something permanent in the past. Seniors are often the only ones who can tell us about a mysterious great aunt or explain how the family came to settle in America.
4. Seniors play an important role in the family.
You might think that the goal is to get the kids out of the house so you can kick back and enjoy retirement. But as many seniors can tell you, being a grandparent is one of life’s special joys. More and more studies are showing that not only are grandchildren great for seniors (keeping them young at heart), but a relationship with grandparents is equally good for children. Grandparents are able to share wisdom and serve as a strong emotional anchor.
5. Seniors are charming.
We’re not going to lie, seniors tend to have a certain joie de vivre that we at Bethesda just can’t resist. Maybe it’s their wit, or all of their captivating stories, or maybe it’s just that seniors make good company. Whatever it is, we’re certainly thankful for our seniors this Senior Citizens Day.