Idea of the Week: Parent Partner

This post will mark the first of what I intend to be a weekly installment in which I share an idea with the world.  My intention with this is two fold.  First, I hope to cultivate an openness to receiving new ideas, but also sharing them (good and bad) with the world. Until now, my coveted moleskin journal has been chock full of thoughts, ideas and solutions that never see the light of day.  I guess on some level, I believe that someday I’ll have the cahones and means to bring them all to life, but I’m probably kidding myself.  The second purpose behind this installment is to hopefully gain feedback from readers or better yet, excite someone enough that they’ll take action themselves.  Any way, I’d love your feedback on this and hope you enjoy it…

I call this first idea, Parent Partner (terrible name, I know).  It arose out an acute awareness at this point in my life that my parents won’t be around forever.  But, I’d like them to be around for as long as possible, so they can see and play a role in the lives of their grandchildren, etc.  But, over the years they’ve developed habits that are working against their health, and, now they’re forced to make changes.  As a 26 year old, I know how hard it can be to make life-altering changes.  I can’t imagine how hard it will be when I’m in my late 50’s.  Not seeing this as an issue?  Think of it in a broader context: the peak of the baby-boomer generation is approaching retirement and our health care system is in for a surprise, but that’s another post.

That’s the problem.  Here’s the half-baked solution: an online community that allows kids (and adults) to work together with their parents to help them achieve health and wellness goals pertaining to exercise, nutrition, stress management, whatever.  But, not in a “Hey, Dad.  You’re fat.  Go exercise.” – kind of way.  In an endearing, supportive, “I love you.  And want you around for a long time.  So, please let me play a small part in your health.” – kind of way.  I see this as a sort of Daily Mile meets Nike+, but with a wider focus.  Parents and their kids could set goals and track their progress together, receive support through a library of editorial content and community of experts, as well as send endearing and helpful notes via a variety of social channels. Thoughts?

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