A Friend of mine in her 60s, newly divorced, married previously for 37 years and not ever considered how or where to find companionship or indeed a new love. She asked me where do I start finding a new love now I’m in my 60’s (or as she said a “silver bird”)
Looking For Love – Where and How
Looking for and finding love in her 60s was a whole new worry, where and how to start? The obvious and most popular place to start is Online Dating Sites. But she was nervous of putting herself out there. These days there are very specific types of sites. For example, some, but not all niches including
* Hooking up for Fun and instant gratification – eg Tinder
* Hooking up with a much younger man, eg Cougar.com
* Marriage or Love
My friend not surprisingly also needed a confidence boost before heading online, therefore we looked at some excellent advice on how to regain or grow your self-esteem and confidence, together with feeling comfortable in front of others and the mobile camera. Hopefully this blog will help remove the fear factor, or at the very least find ways to harness the fear and do it anyway.
Ask most older single women if they would like to find love after 60 and the answer is likely to be yes, ask them how will they find love? this is where they falter. Staring at a page on a website is not perhaps what they had in mind. Yet it would seem the way to go.
As we now live Well into our 80s many of us are now looking at new relationships, this may be due to divorce, recently widowed or simply never married but now want to settle down. Head over to the online world and many websites offer a whole range of services with a host of additional costs, some are suggesting that the additional cost will offer a better class of mate. There is a lot to take on board and so much choice becomes too much choice, even the experienced online dater can be intimidated by some of the sites but more so if you are new to this way of meeting which, if you are reading this you probably are.
Let’s Start with Self Esteem and Image
* 1/ Body Confidence.
Accepting you are no longer going to have the 20-year-old body you once had is no reason to feel embarrassed or concerned. The mate you are likely to be seeking will also no longer have the young man body. (or young woman)
Start with personal grooming, this will now be a regular fixture in your diary, it is also a great bit of “me time” and adds hugely to confidence. If you can afford a colour and haircut regularly then that too will ensure you’re always look groomed.
Exercise, it doesn’t have to be the Gym Zumba class nor does it have to be boot camp, but you should regularly be exercising, this can be as simple as a 10-15 min of daily Yoga, walking the dog that little bit longer, or indeed joining the local rambler group. This will help with mental health, sleeping and if joining a group based activity can be a convivial and safe place to make new friends and contacts
*2/ Widen your Horizons
This may include new hobbies, or going back to old interests. Joining a local Am Dram group, again a wonderful place to meet like-minded folk, if acting is not your thing but you enjoy singing then source the local Rock or Folk Choir.
Getting involved with your local community or indeed becoming a volunteer is wonderfully rewarding and will ensure you broaden your horizons. My friend, for example, has become a very keen Hedgehog enthusiast, she has learnt much from the charity and is active in the local Hog Community in rescuing and repatriating little and not so little Hogs. She even gives talks to groups and relevant charities. When you think “I can’t be bothered” this is exactly the time to pick up the phone or get off the sofa. Just do it.
*3/ Open Your Wardrobe and be Ruthless
This can be both painful and cathartic. It involves chucking out (or giving to charity), the old favourites, the too many comfortable Grey, beige or baggy clothes, (including the leggings unless they are for the Gym)
Affiliate links disclaimer, I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you the customer) in the event you purchase an item through the link
If you have recently lost weight or if you are starting a new “Body Confidence” regime then a big new wardrobe is required. Don’t see it as a scary challenge, you may have apprehension around communal changing rooms, you may also feel nothing looks good on you so why bother?
Then worry not, there are many online sites who offer an outstanding service. One of the best and one I highly recommend is www.seasaltcornwall.co.uk (deliver overseas). Retaining excellent quality with comfort and a wonderfully flattering fit. Has a slightly nautical and casual style. A wonderful company with great customer services and is my favourite.
It has many simple “Go To Dresses, trousers, and Tunics, you never need say “I don’t know what to wear. Open your wardrobe and go.
NB will review the Top 5 Online shops both US and UK in the coming months.
*4/ Travel – Take a Holiday
Many Tour Operator specialise in Single Holidays, this can include organised and escorted tours, adventure tours for the over 50s, those with mobility issues together with Cruises and the “Tailor-Made” itineraries which includes cruise and tour. For those specialist companies, they can often offer single rooms without a supplement. I would always recommend using a Travel Agent and Tour Operator when looking at escorted tours and excursions rather than putting it together yourself as they will be able to guide and advise the best holiday type for your fitness level, your preferred choice of location and of course fellow-travellers.
Pre Corona Virus, cruising was an ideal way to meet fellow singles, with many offers, single cabins and cruise companies it was competitive. Whilst we are awaiting the outcome of the Pandemic then for the time being this may not necessarily be the safest option. However, once over this would be my recommendation for a nervous solo traveller as at least 15% of travellers on cruises are single.
Invest In Yourself
*5/ Your Worth It
I mentioned earlier about exercise helping with sleep. If mobility is an issue then a simple yoga pre-bed routine would be a really useful intervention.
One of the key problems as we get older is suffering from insomnia, this can be a result of many things but the most common are poor sleep behaviour, food intolerances, alcohol and medication, financial worries and external stresses.
Make your bedroom a calming and darkened environment once lights are out, try to have at least 30-60 Minutes pre-sleep of non-electrical intervention, which includes social media and or television. Obvious but no caffeine from early evening onward. Try to keep alcohol to a minimum and do not eat late. I have also found white noise or nature noise (like distant thunder and rain) will encourage deep sleep. One of the best apps is a 30-minute fading app called “Rain Rain” https://www.rainrainapp.com/ There are many others on the Internet so it’s worth investigating.
Daily meditation and mindfulness is something that has changed the lives of many, dealing with the “here and now” is one of the most remarkable ways of dealing with anxiety and stress. There is an app called “headspace.com” which for me offers excellent guidance, for both beginners and experienced alike.
Diet is also a likely culprit to the insomniac, avoid spice and rich foods mid to late evening especially if you suffer from IBS. I will add a diet sheet (for sleep) on another blog and attach to this once written.
Investing in yourself can include professional help if required like counselling, taking the time to visit the medical Practitioner for issues that have been plaguing you for a while but have never found the time to ask for help, or indeed you have thwacked it away with “it’s not serious” Take the time, you are important, your time is now.
Take the time to read, visit friends soak in a bath and learn to say No, the latter is hardest to say when it is family but this is something you can learn. Keeping your answer simple without justification is better than fibbing because you feel guilty. A great resource is Wiki How who will guide you through the process. https://www.wikihow.com/Learn-to-Say-No.
*6/ How I Stay Hydrated
Drink plenty of water. This is a simple instruction but you would be amazed how many adults do not drink enough. More so if you are on a restrictive diet due to weight gain or medication. 2 litres per day would be ideal, but for many that would seem too much of a challenge, perhaps break it down to 500 ml bottles at a time. I tend to drink sparkling water as I love it so much I can
drink bottles of it in a day. However, when I am at work I drink tap water and find if I place a 2 750ml flasks on my desk in the morning the challenge is set. You will notice immediately feeling more refreshed, alert, better bowel movement and less hungry. Often the brain will confuse thirst with hunger and you will raid the biscuit tin when actually your body is craving hydration. Try it ……
Learning To Love Yourself & Trust Another
Without knowing your personal background this may or may not be an issue. But for the majority of newly single, widowed ladies or those reading this post, it’s likely the reflection staring back at you in the mirror every day is often a disappointment or more worrying avoided at all costs. All I can say is time, if you consistently take the time if you proactively invest in yourself and even “fake it till you make it” you will find your confidence will grow.
Having a positive mindset is also wonderfully attractive. Think about it, the acquaintance who always sees the negative, or the one carrying resentments is someone we likely avoid. Try not to let that be you. Mindfulness is a great healer.
Every day I have myself a gratitude list. Even when times are difficult I am grateful for the small things. Saying it out loud is cathartic
Letting resentments go is possibly the best advice given to me at a time in my life when I thought I had just cause. But the day you can let that go will be the day you became free from a lot of pain. It will not be forgotten but when you actively forgive you will find that life is easier and trust becomes less of an issue.
Trust is sensibly not something we hand over too easily, but never the less we naturally want to trust someone we like and feel hurt if it’s not returned, learning compassion and taking the small step of trusting yourself will hopefully take you forward. Trusting your own judgment also takes time. But getting out there with your companions, friends family and new hobbies is the first step.
Some Related Questions Asked when Searching Over 60’s lifestyle
R.Q1/ What if I want friendship or love with the same sex? The above premise would still apply but in addition, there are support networks on the internet that show how you can find like-minded people.
R.Q2/ How often do the over 60’s make love? There is trepidation over how frequently is normal or what is expected when you meet a new mate. Looking at recent studies it would seem to say that once a month is quite normal (although indicating a desire for more frequency) In terms of when is too soon to make love? This is an age old question being levelled at females and although the younger 20 somethings will want instant gratification there are many who don’t. Just like your younger self do not ever feel cajoled or the opposite made to feel like a tramp, do what is right for you as these situations, can easily mess with your fragile self-esteem. Think of what advice you would offer a friend should she ask.
Take a look at the person in the mirror, learn to like her. Make changes where necessary, sleep more drink more water, invest in yourself. This will include being ruthless with your wardrobe, and possibly your current lifestyle. If you think you have problems, medical or alcohol then talk to someone. Getting out of your comfort zone at least once a day, may require a phone call, being there for another or indeed taking time for yourself.
Over the coming months, we will look at moving forward. Overhauling your make up and grooming routine. Today is the first day. I am really pleased you have read to this point. You are not alone.
If you liked this post you may well enjoy reading another that I have written called “Hobbies for Older Women”
I would welcome any comments, what you have done to find love or companionship and how that worked for you.
Founder of Hey Spring Chicken
Photos – Wikimedia Commons, pixabay, pixel and own