Five to Thrive- Finding your Digital Confidence-Navigating the Tech World

Show Notes:


Valerie dives into the digital landscape and provides tips to help women over 50 navigate the digital world with confidence. She acknowledges that technology can be overwhelming, but starting with the basics makes it manageable. Valerie shares her experiences with new gadgets and highlights the importance of understanding the buttons, settings, and apps on devices like smartphones. She also emphasizes the need to seek help from resources like Tech Boomers and Senior Planet to enhance tech skills.

Valerie then discusses the importance of online safety and cybersecurity. She warns against falling for scams and advises listeners to install reputable antivirus software, avoid clicking on suspicious links, and subscribe to services like “Have I Been Pwned” to check if their email has been compromised. Valerie also emphasizes the need to be cautious when sharing personal information on social media and provides tips on adjusting privacy settings.

In the digital age, Valerie encourages women to embrace the opportunities for learning and growth. She suggests exploring online courses and engaging with online communities based on personal interests. Valerie also highlights the benefits of digital communication tools like Skype and Zoom, which allow people to connect with loved ones regardless of distance.

Overall, Valerie encourages women to embrace technology, be cautious, and enjoy the journey of navigating the digital world.

Key Takeaways:

  • Start with the basics when navigating the digital world to make it more manageable.
  • Seek help from resources like Tech Boomers and Senior Planet to enhance tech skills.
  • Install reputable antivirus software and avoid clicking on suspicious links to ensure online safety.
  • Adjust privacy settings on social media platforms to control who sees your posts.
  • Embrace online learning opportunities and engage with online communities based on personal interests.
  • Use digital communication tools like Skype and Zoom to connect with loved ones regardless of distance.


00:03 Introduction to Five to Thrive Tuesday and the topic of navigating the digital world

01:10 Starting with the basics to make the digital world manageable

03:09 Learning curve when transitioning to new technology

04:20 Steps to gradually learn and understand new technology

05:29 Resources for learning technology, such as Tech Boomers and Senior Planet

06:11 Importance of cybersecurity and protecting online presence

07:18 Steps to safeguard yourself online, including installing antivirus software

08:47 Being cautious about what you share on social media and adjusting privacy settings

10:41 Tips for creating strong and unique passwords and avoiding sharing personal information

12:07 Embracing the digital age for learning, communication, and connection 


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Stay tuned for more inspiring chats, tips, and stories about the midlife journey.

See you soon! Let’s continue to age with grace, style, and a touch of sass.


[00:03] Valerie: Hello, beautiful ladies. Welcome back to another episode of Five to Thrive Tuesday. Our mission is to provide empowering tips for women over 50 to help us navigate this vibrant stage of life with grace, style, and a whole lot of fun. Each week, I bring you five practical and engaging tips on a specific top. I hope you find them relative and relatable. And we'll come back for more. Now, let's dive in.

[00:34] Valerie: Technology, like art, is a soaring exercise of the human imagination, said Daniel Bell. Today, we're journeying into the digital landscape armed with tools and tips to help us. We want to ensure that we not only survive, but that we thrive. Ready? Let's dive in and navigate this digital world together. You remember that time you got your first microwave or VCR, right? There is a learning curve, but we got there. Similarly, the digital world might seem overwhelming, but starting with the basics makes it manageable. I'm sure we've all had that new gadget where we were just staring at it like it's an alien. For me, it's the robotic vacuum that I got a few months ago. It literally is sitting there. And I'm sure it's maybe not that difficult, but I need to add the app. I need to take some time to figure it out. And I literally just stare at it and think that it's just going to start vacuuming on its own without me having set it up. That's not happening. Sometimes I realize that I assume because I'm generally tech savvy, that everybody else is. I get a new phone, I pretty much know exactly what to do. And if I don't know, I Google it and then I figure it out. But I was talking to some ladies recently who are, say, like in their late 50s, early to mid sixty s, and they were telling me that they are not comfortable with technology. Every one of them had cell phones. Some were Android, some were iPhones. I always thought iPhones were very intuitive, but I'm learning, according to others, that they're not. My mom, who has had an iPhone for years, just recently went from an iPhone eight to a 14. She had to upgrade because while we loved her having the eight and she loved having eight, the battery was dying. And Apple apparently no longer makes a battery for the eight. I knew there would be a learning curve because the eight had touch ID, and then now the 14, it has that facial recognition. But I had forgotten about other changes that had happened and trying to figure out things like how do I get back from one app to the next when I don't have that button down there that I can tap? All the things that me and probably some other others of us take for granted. So we've given her a few or several tutorials, and she calls when she kind of gets stuck and hung up on things but she is starting to get the hang of it. I have a friend who had been an Android user for years, and she recently made the move to iPhone. But she took a different approach, kind of a slower, let's gradually work our way into this. So instead of diving straight into apps, she took like a week just to understand the phone settings and the basics. Now she operating like a pro. But here are a few steps she took. She first learned the buttons, the physical buttons. Where's the volume? How do I power it on and off? Is there a home button? What does all that look like? Then the next thing was to get acquainted with the settings. So her WiFi connection, how do I adjust brightness? Can I make my fonts bigger? How do I set up contacts, setting up my email? All those things? And then thirdly, it took some time to understand the apps. What apps did she need? Maybe what did she have on her Android that she wanted to now use on her iPhone? And then how do I download them? What does apple Music. What is that? What does it do? How do I access it? And then started to organize her apps. That made the transition a lot easier for her. And another thing is, like many of us who have kids who are grown millennials or something, or even grandkids, you know, more than likely they are more tech savvy than we are. So we need to use them as resources. But you can also consider resources like Tech Boomers. They offer tutorials on everything from setting up email to using search engines. And another good resource is Senior Planet from AARP. Check them out. Safety first. Think of the Internet as a bustling city. Just as you wouldn't leave your purse unattended in a public place, you need to guard your online presence. My cousin once received an email claiming that she had won some prize. She had never entered any drawing, but before she knew it, she had clicked on a link and her computer had a virus. These days, there are unfortunately so many similar scams out there. I often get emails saying that they're from Facebook or Instagram and that they're taking down my page. But if I want to dispute, I just click on this link. Well, clicking on the link would likely allow them to hack me or to take over my account. I'm telling you, I get so frustrated and think, if only these criminals could just get real jobs, it would be great. Always ensure that you're interacting with legitimate emails and websites. This underscores the importance of cybersecurity. As I said, always. I'm saying it again, ensure that you're interacting with legitimate emails and websites. Resources like Stay Safe Online provide tips on safeguarding yourself. But here are three steps that you can take. Number one is to install a reputable antivirus software. If you don't know how to do it yourself. And then you can go someplace like Geek Squad at Best Buy, and they can do it for you. Number two, if you receive a message or an email with a link that looks suspicious or unexpected, refrain from clicking on it. Reach out to the sender through another method to verify. And then thirdly, subscribe to something like Have I been pond? That's Pond, and I'll put these resources in the show notes, but this is a free service that notifies you if your email has been compromised in a data breach. And remember, ladies, a complex password isn't necessarily a tricky one. Maybe just try combining memorable phrases with numbers like Blue Sky 1995 Exclamation point. Something like that's. Stay social, but be cautious. Social media is like a large reunion reconnecting with old friends, keeping up with family. But just as in real life, you shouldn't shout personal details in a crowded room. Be mindful of what you share online. Not everything online is as it seems. I recently read an article about a young lady who shared a vacation photo with her location tagged. It seemed harmless until an unknown person showed up at her vacation spot. Now, that's pretty scary. I sometimes add location tags to my post, but typically they're only the city. Or if maybe it's a particular address or restaurant or venue. I may share that, but I'll do it after the fact when I'm not still there. It's fun to share, but always check those privacy settings. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram have comprehensive guides to help you adjust who sees what you post. You might consider setting your profile as private to control who has what access to your information. While we embrace the digital age, we also need to protect ourselves. Here are some quick pointers. Friendships and Privacy be discerning about who you connect with on social platforms. It's perfectly okay to limit your circles to those that you know and you trust. And regularly check your privacy settings. Password Strings Remember the days of hiding a spare key under the mat? Well, think of your passwords as the key to your digital home, keeping them strong and unique. Using a mix of uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols is a great start. Use a password manager like LastPass and then sharing personal information. So while it's great to share experiences online, be cautious about revealing sensitive personal details. There's a fine line between sharing and oversharing. Keep specifics, especially financial details. Offline. Now, here are a couple of steps to consider. Number one, avoid posting real time locations or upcoming travel plans. And number two, think before you share. If you're unsure about whether or not you should share something, then sleep on it and decide about it the next day. Sites like Privacy Rights Clearinghouse offer resources on protecting your privacy in the digital age. Discover and Learn The beauty of the digital age is the world of knowledge. It opens up curiosity keeps us young. The digital age opens up a plethora of opportunities to learn. I recall Janet, a listener, who wrote in mentioning how she took a digital photography class on Udemy. And there are also websites like Coursera or Khan Academy, and they have courses on countless subjects. Now, some steps to consider are one, identify your interests. So maybe you love gardening. Well, there's probably an online horticulture course. Number two dedicate a set time each week for learning. This can get hard to try to fit in, but I found putting it on my calendar and on my to do list makes sure I get it done. I typically allow Friday evenings as my time for learning and development, and if I fit it in some other times during the week, that's great. But Friday evenings at 08:00, that's the time that's set aside. Number three engage with online communities around your interests. It really makes the journey more collaborative. You. And last but not least, embrace digital communication. Oh, the joy of seeing the faces of friends and loved ones who are miles away. I recall during COVID when we couldn't get together in person, my friends and I had several virtual gatherings over Zoom. On New Year's Eve, we had a couple's get together and even played a scavenger hunt game within each of our houses. It felt like we were in the same room. I'm telling you, we laughed and played and ate. We just did everything that we would normally do when we were together, except we did it over Zoom. But it was a blast. Tools like Skype or Zoom have made it so that distance isn't a barrier to seeing our loved ones. Try setting up a virtual coffee date with a friend or a family game night. The possibilities are endless. So here's how you can maximize these tools. Number one, host events. Maybe, like I said earlier, virtual game night. Or a virtual family dinner or movie night. Now, have you ever heard of Teleparty? Apparently it was formerly known as Netflix Party. Well, it allows you to watch movies with friends. That's pretty cool. Number two is join online groups or communities based on your interest, so websites like Meetup are perfect for this. Keep in mind, these aren't just tips. Consider them as stepping stones to a vibrant, interconnected world. And there we have it, ladies. The digital world is vast and ever evolving, but it holds so many opportunities for connection, learning, and growth. Embrace it, be cautious, and most importantly, enjoy the journey. Go forth, explore, and remember, technology is just a tool. The real magic lies in how we use it.

[15:23] Valerie: Thank you so much for joining me for Five to Thrive Tuesday. If you haven't already done so, please subscribe so that you don't miss an episode. If you enjoyed the segment, please rate review and share it with a friend. Let's stay connected on Instagram, Facebook, and or threads at imvalory. Hatcher or email me at Until next time, let's continue to age with race style and a touch of sass. Get tips to safely embrace technology, from device basics to social media caution to online learning. Navigate the digital world after 50.

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