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This article first appeared on Next Avenue, written by Dr. Ken Dychtwald, psychologist and gerontologist, author of 17 books and CEO of Age Wave.
Dr. Dychtwald recently joined investment strategist Nela Richardson to discuss what you can do right now to help you navigate the emotional and financial stress you may be coping with. You can view that conversation in the April 1 Edward Jones Perspective Special Edition: Managing Stress: Older Adults and Their Families.
Like nearly everyone else, I’m finding that this coronavirus has disrupted my family and friends’ lives as well as our views and hopes about the future.
But what’s been swirling in my mind is how so little attention has been given to moonshot-type solutions. I don’t mean solutions such as whether and how to “flatten the curve” (although that’s supercritical). Or which presidential candidate will make us feel more calm, trusting and secure (that’s supercritical, too).
I’m talking about solutions to the new public challenge that is an aggressive biologic enemy and the people who can find them. The people — such as biologists, geneticists, physicians and artificial intelligence technologists — who can stop this virus in its tracks and relegate it to history.
Remember Jonas Salk’s breakthrough in 1953 with polio? His 21st century equivalents should be supported and encouraged to work in every way possible, and at lightning speed.
Instead, we’ve been shining televised spotlights on countless blamers, forecasters, distracters, communicators and exploiters. This actually seems eerily reflective of who, and what, we have attended to and glorified during the past half century. While our parents were “builders” and “abiders” and our generation has excelled at being “innovators” and communicators,” it’s time to nourish the “solvers” — specifically the bio-scientists.
We are committed to reporting on the risks of the coronavirus and steps you can take to benefit you, your loved ones and others in your community.
As longevity increases and our population’s demographic composition shifts older, COVID-19 could turn out to be a wake-up call to dramatically fund science in the public interest, shifting attention toward solutions — wherever possible, preventative solutions.
Last year, the White House’s Office of Management and Budget published the alarming fact that while federal spending on Medicare was $4.93 per person per day, only 28 cents was invested in medical research per person per day.
It’s time to begin a new era of solutions: SOLVERS NEEDED.
A virus has emerged that is threatening our lives. It’s time for scientific solvers of every stripe, from every corner of the planet, to do their thing (individually and collectively) ASAP.
If you’re lucky enough to know a solver, cheer them on, wish them well, help them get funding, encourage them and fortify them if they become frustrated.
And as for my fellow boomers, here are four ways we can become more solutions-oriented during this time of metamorphosis: