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This Week Our Mission Takes Center Stage To Tell the Greatest Stories Never Told for Longer, Happier, Healthier lives

Thousands of years ago, cave dwellers painted on walls to warn of dangers or depict important events. The ancient Greeks and Romans shared myths and stories to influence everyday life. The Bible, Shakespeare and Guttenberg all accelerated the sharing of stories. Even today, Aborigines in Australia’s Outback use “song lines” and the Native American tribes use ancient oral histories to trace their journeys and discover themselves through those who came before.

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The Power of Life Stories in Health Care

Every person has a story to tell. Storytelling is something we have experienced around the kitchen table or a warm campfire. Tales of great joy, tragedy, adventure, or love are told as we share our own human experiences with each other. Narrative and reminiscing are appropriate and useful in health care (narrative medicine, narrative care, humanities in medicine). It is also useful in daily life because: 1) Nearly anyone can participate in life review; 2) Life stories can help with a positive sense of identity; and 3) As people reach the end of their lives, it can result in integrity and reconciliation (Kenyon, et al. 2011, p. 291-292). It is especially helpful in the lives of older people as psychiatrist Dr. Robert Butler first documented in 1963; it comes naturally to reminisce with the familiarity and comfort of sharing about one’s past experiences, especially as people reach into their 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, and beyond.

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MyHello Helps Fight Loneliness

LifeBio’s newest program, MyHello, is a loneliness intervention geared towards elders. Through weekly telephone calls, trained MyHello guides are reaching out to help lessen the effects of social isolation, especially during COVID-19, through engaging and meaningful conversation. Calls often center on reminiscent topics, such as school and work experiences, hobbies, historical events, or other life memories.

Here are some examples of the success MyHello is having, one phone call at a time each week.

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MyHello is changing lives!

Birds of a feather flock together... But what happens if isolation prevents flocking?

LifeBio designed MyHello to be a loneliness intervention. While it has been geared towards serving elders, it is not limited to any particular ages. The idea is that weekly telephone calls will help increase social connectedness and help cut down on feelings of isolation and depression, even more so during our nation’s current pandemic. There are different types of telephone calls available, depending on what a person finds most suitable to individual needs and preferences.

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MyHello Success Stories

“Hello again, hello. Just called to say hello…

Hello, my friend, hello. Just called to let you know I think about you…

Hello… It’s good to need you so. It’s good to need you like I do and to feel this way when I hear you say, ‘Hello.’”

(From “Hello Again” written by Neil Diamond and Alan Lindgren)

 

It is natural that occasionally we want to know we are thought of. Sometimes we want to hear that someone cares about us. At times we want to be reminded that we matter. Especially during times of social isolation, feelings of loneliness and depression can creep in on us. During those times in particular, it can be so good to hear from someone checking in with us, just letting us know they are thinking about us and want to hear us say “hello” back.

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