When faced with getting old, there are two options, according to international ageing advocate and author Marcus Riley. We can wither on the vine, or we can embrace our later years with positivity and passion.
That’s the central theme of his book Booming: A Life-Changing Philosophy for Ageing Well.
“There is a choice,” he writes. “We can either accept the negativity that abounds about getting older … we can define ourselves by our age. Or we can choose to seize the opportunity to revel in our extended later years with joy, passion and wisdom.”
Riley, CEO of Queensland aged care and retirement living service BallyCara, has held state and national leadership positions with industry bodies and as chair of the Washington based Global Ageing Network led UN discussions on issues related to ageing including equality, non-discrimination, neglect, violence and abuse in 2017. He’s since been elected to the governing committee for the Global Alliance for the Rights of Older Persons.
Preparing for the final curtain
Riley brings all this and more to his book. It not only provides a road map for fulfilling ageing but is a goldmine of good advice on planning for the future, adapting to the challenges of ageing and embracing the rewards, confronting ageism and going out with courage and peace when the final curtain falls.
He told Community Care Review his book is a resource for older people, younger family members and anyone working with senior Australians.
“This book has got a formula for ageing successfully, which comes back to three key ingredients; positivity, planning and purpose,” he says.
“Those three factors address the three main threats to successful ageing – negative stereotypes, isolation and loss of control.
“I really believe we have a wonderful opportunity to age successfully and what I wanted to do was make people aware that we do have an individual opportunity to boom.”