Overcoming Anxiety and Fears about Aging with GetSetUp

How Kathy, a Retired Professional, Used Lifelong Learning to Establish Her New Career and Overcome COVID-Related Fears and Anxieties About Aging

Kathy, who has frequently attended GetSetUp classes, is a semi-retired human resource and risk management practitioner who enjoyed a long and successful career. She has worked in local government, public safety, education, healthcare, and the private sector and is currently an ADR mediator.  Kathy has also dedicated much of her adult life to family services, advocating for victims of domestic violence and child abuse, and she is currently a CASA volunteer, as well.  When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Kathy found herself isolated and overwhelmed with anxiety about aging and a fear of becoming ill and an elderly dependent. She lost sight of enjoying a vibrant and healthy future and thinking positively.

"I developed really bad anxiety, a sense of panic and fear during the COVID and feeling overwhelmed from the sickness and deaths at catastrophic levels and being reported hourly and daily. It all led me to worrying about getting old and sickly, and becoming useless and dependent. I was afraid of COVID, and I isolated myself to stay well, and struggled with a host of imagined fears."

Kathy refused to let these feelings consume her, however, and she began searching for ways to get out and active outdoors again, and connect with people, and she looked for ways to engage in learning, and personal growth. That's when she discovered GetSetUp, and she got fired up and excited.

"I also decided to get counseling to address my COVID-related anxieties, and discovering GetSetUp was perfect timing.  Man, I started feeling revived and motivated again.  I’ve enjoyed the GetSetUp platform for over two years now, and I continue to find its evolving content interesting, current, and stimulating."

Learning New Skills

She signed up for several classes in a day and for multiple days each week thanks to sponsorship from her local Sacramento Agency on Aging Area 4.  Through GetSetUp, Kathy was able to learn iPhone tips and shortcuts and learned about other technologies she used but had never taken the time to fully understand their many features, which helped her to refocus her thoughts on learning, being productive, and looking forward positively instead of staying stuck in fear and anxiety.

"I started registering for classes to learn about iCloud, Zoom, and all the Facebook, Instagram, Apple, and Google apps, and Microsoft features, building a website, and several other technologies.  I was learning how to use the apps proactively for my personal needs, and I loved gaining new knowledge.  I enjoyed learning and sharing amongst my peers.  I feel that GetSetUp helped to awaken my mind again. It helped me move from my fears and out of that negative space and helped wake up brain cells."

Kathy shared that she regained confidence and new knowledge and skills that led her to rejuvenate her career.   In a short time, she completed professional certifications in domestic violence advocacy, human trafficking advocacy, supervised visitation monitoring, dispute resolution, and became certified and appointed as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA).  She didn’t stop there and she also achieved a professional ADR Mediation certification and mediates in small claims, civil harassment, and family courts, and in community mediation services, and private mediation services. GetSetUp was her “reboot” and a prompting to regain her interests in business, and inspired her greater sense of confidence, and helped her to think healthy thoughts and reconnect with a purpose.

In addition to the practical benefits of learning about technology, which she now utilizes in her work, Kathy also appreciated the social aspect of the GetSetUp community of peers

"It was nice to be amongst people my age and older. I just wanted to be with my peers and share common experiences and perspectives and be able to talk about the grandkids, the great-grands, or chat about something new we've learned or how we view the world and what we're going through in our age group. It's so nice to be able to connect with others who are going through similar life stages and phases and to share and learn from each other.  It’s fun to laugh at ourselves, amongst ourselves.  

Overall, GetSetUp has played a crucial role in helping Kathy to overcome her anxiety and fears from being isolated and overwhelmed with the devastation of COVID.  GetSetUp helped her get active and engaged again. 

I honestly believe that at that time, GetSetUp was a lifeline.  I'm so grateful for the support and opportunities that GetSetUp has provided me."

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