Let’s talk: Who made you the person you are today? 10



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Few things can enrich our lives like the knowledge that we are valued, respected and loved. Not only can it make us feel happier and more connected to others; it may even improve our wellbeing.

But how often do we reach out to those we admire – the people who supported and encouraged us to be the people we are today – and tell them how we feel about them?

Today we’d like to ask you: Who is the ‘Great’ in your life who helped shape you as a person? Your ‘Great’ might be the parent who loved and supported you; the grandparent who taught you the importance of family; the friend who gave you a valuable life lesson; the teacher who sparked a passion or interest; the coach who took you aside and worked with you until you got it right; the mentor who helped you forge a career.

Have you ever considered that you might be somebody else’s ‘Great’ – perhaps to your grandchildren, pupils or employees? How often are you in contact with these special people in your life?


While we all want to feel socially connected, regular contact with the people we love is particularly important, especially as we get older. A recent Bupa survey* found that more than half of Australians think society values people less as they age.

It’s not always easy to stay connected. With busy lives, passing time, and distance, we can drift apart from the people who are important to us, no matter how much we may care for them. The smallest gesture – even a quick phone call – can change that.

Starts at 60 has partnered with Bupa to celebrate these important people in our lives to give them the recognition they deserve. We’d like to encourage everybody in the community to get in touch with their ‘Great’ and to encourage those around them to do the same, to help play a part in their continued wellbeing and to enrich their lives as they enrich ours.

To make it even easier, Bupa is giving you and your Great the chance to enjoy a great day out at the 2015 Toyota AFL Grand Final. Click here to share your story and selfie or picture with your Great and enter the running.

Who is your Great? Are they still a part of your life? Do they know what they mean to you? And is there anything stopping you from reaching out to them today?

This post has been sponsored by Bupa. It was written as we feel it offers valuable insights into a subject close to the Starts at 60 community. For more information, please visit the #Caringforourgreats website. 


*Survey conducted by Galaxy research July 2015, commissioned by Bupa. This study was conducted online among a representative sample of Australians 18 years and older. The sample was 1,000 respondents, distributed throughout Australia including both capital city and non-capital city areas. Following the completion of interviewing, the data was weighted by gender, age and region to reflect the latest population estimates.


Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Probably the health services in the UK. I had polio when I was 5 years old. As the youngest of four, my mother couldn’t always be at my side, but doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, ambulance men, etc. were marvellous role models.

  2. I am fortunate enough to be surrounded by many greats. From my own parents, to in-laws, aunties and uncles, a few teaches and coaches here and there, family friends and in particular my god parents. I think those family and friends who survive the highs and lows of your life and are still by your side many years down the track should all be recognised as your Greats. The important thing to remember is to give back.

  3. My Mum the strongest most determined woman way ahead of her times a business woman who worked in a mans world and succeeded .

  4. My loving & kind DAD, who after my mum died leaving 3 children under the age of 4 devoted his life to bringing us up to be strong & self sufficient. There was no government help ‘back in the day’ in fact he was penalised by being taxed as a single man.

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  5. I guess I did myself after being put down and criticised a good portion of my life I feel I have become a stronger and wiser person because of it…took awhile though….stand up for myself now…

  6. My sister was appointed legal guardian of 5 younger siblings at the tender age of 16. She had to bear the loss of the oldest of my brothers 2 years later. She made sure we all went to school fed & clothed decently, even though she’d had to leave school & give up her dream of being a teacher. Even after she married she still had the youngest at home to care for.
    Later she lost her husband to dementia when he was about 57. She had 4 children & is still today caring for her oldest who has been totally disabled by MS for many years. I became a Registered Nurse thanks to her encouragement. I have never heard her complain & anyone who knows her will say what a beautiful person she is. Pat is now 77 years old & it would be lovely if she could be recognised fo a life of caring.

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