I wanted to spend some time on this podcast talking a little bit about the psychological underpinnings of why older adults might refuse to maintain social distance and work instead.
In this episode, I share two psychological theories to explain why older adults may put themselves at risk by working rather than remain socially distant, including:
>> Sebastian Junger’s, Tribe Phenomenon
>> Erik Erikson’s Psycho-Social Development Model
Here’s a look at what I talk about in this episode…
- [02:20] Discover the similarity between soldiers returning from deployment only to request to return to the front lines and healthcare workers returning from retirement to work during COVID-19.
- [02:44] This phenomenon is best described in Sebastian Junger’s best selling book, Tribe.
- [06:03] Ever wonder why as humans we have an innate drive to create and contribute to the wellbeing of others? Erik Erikson’s Psychosocial Development model helps us understand this with his stage, Generativity versus Stagnation.
- [07:10] I share one of my favorite examples of Generativity, Sarah Blakely.
- [08:02] Learn about the psychological and social downside of not mastering Generativity in middle age. There’s even a name for it– Stagnation.
- [08:38] Learn what it takes for older adults to reflect on their lives and experience few regrets, according to Erikson’s final stage in human development – Integrity vs. Despair.
- [09:39] Lastly, I tie up these theories in a lovely bow to discuss the notion that older adults who choose to work may be acting with integrity to put themselves at risk, and at the same time may be protecting themselves from despair.
By the end of this episode, you’ll have a better understanding of why some older adults may choose to work during COVID-19 despite great risk to themselves.