Don’t you love turning to the first page of a new book? There’s a feeling of expectation at the start of a story, and with the beginning of the new year, that same level of hopeful excitement settles upon us. Better yet, we have some level of control over how our story will play out, as we resolve to make healthy lifestyle changes to improve our wellbeing, our relationships with others, and the paths our lives will take.
For older adults, making resolutions is a wonderful way to impart a sense of achievement, meaning, and purpose in life. A wonderful bonding activity for family members is to sit down together and write down a listing of each person’s wishes for the new year, and how to set about acquiring those. Some recommendations to kickstart the conversation, especially for the seniors you love, include:
- Strive for Five. The USDA recommends five helpings of fruits and vegetables for seniors every day. Top choices include those that are dark green or brightly colored, such as kale, spinach, collard greens, cantaloupe, and bell peppers.
- Start Moving! Every one of us can benefit from some extra physical activity. Always begin with a consultation with the doctor to receive approval on an exercise plan, and then put a plan in place to implement. Great exercises for many older adults include swimming or water aerobics, walking, and tai chi. Working with a family member, or a professional in-home caregiver from a senior care company, can provide the motivation and encouragement to stick to it.
- Make an Appointment – or Two. Take out the calendar, pick up the phone, and arrange for all those tests and screenings you’ve been putting off: vision and hearing check-ups, colon and breast cancer screenings, osteoporosis tests, etc.
- Boost Your Brain. Decide that this will be the year to learn something new or to try something you’ve always wanted to try. For senior adults, there are various kinds of senior-specific courses at community colleges that offer the added benefit of enhancing socialization. Other good choices include online language courses, memory games and puzzles, or educational activities at the local library.
- End a Bad Habit. Whether it’s quitting smoking, curbing alcohol consumption, or another unhealthy habit, the new year is the perfect occasion to determine to overcome it. Setting small goals and celebrating along the way is a great way to improve chances of success.
At Compassionate Nursing Services, we’re available to help seniors set and reach new goals this year with our professional St. Louis home care services. Just a few of the many ways we can make a difference:
- Offer safe, escorted transportation for older adults to healthcare appointments, exercise programs, classes, social outings, and more
- Fix healthy, delicious meals that adhere any prescribed dietary plans
- Errand-running such as grocery shopping to keep the refrigerator and cupboards well stocked
- Provide medication reminders to make certain prescriptions are taken exactly as recommended
- And much more