The beginning of a new year is a time for second chances, new commitments and goal-setting. Whether or not you make New Year’s resolutions, this January can be a time for you to examine your life and determine what you need to experience the senior living lifestyle you always wanted.
When you imagined your retirement years, what came to mind? Is there something lacking in your lifestyle, or are there goals you’ve yet to accomplish? What could make your senior years even better? These questions and more can help you create a mindset of achievement for the coming year and put you on the path to greater fulfillment.
In this article, we’ll offer some inspiration for making senior living resolutions that will help create the quality of life you deserve. From intrinsic goals to altruistic activities, there’s a unique way for everyone to make a change for the better this year.
COMMON GOALS FOR HEALTHY SENIOR LIVING
- Eating Better – For many of us, eating healthy is a common goal we commit to throughout our lives. However, as we age, eating right becomes more and more vital to our overall health. Older adults experience many physical changes, such as a slower metabolism, and are more prone to health conditions like diabetes that greatly impact our nutritional intake. Whether or not you’re currently experiencing health issues, a healthy diet can provide enormous benefits (brain health, stronger immune systems, digestive health) for every senior.
- Staying Active – Similarly, regular physical activity boosts our overall well-being by keeping the body strong and maintaining organ health. Rather than making a broad resolution of “exercising,” consider a more specific goal. Maybe focus on heart health and start cardio workouts, or hone in on increasing your flexibility.
- Improving Brain Health – Dementia and other types of memory loss are increasingly prevalent among the senior population. Make it a goal to maintain optimal brain health this year by taking up stimulating activities for the mind. Be proactive and exercise brain-healthy choices (eating well, proper sleep, physical safety, social activity) and take care of your mental and emotional health. Studies show that mental illness and chronic stress may be linked to memory loss later in life.
- Adapting Your Home – Especially for seniors who wish to stay in their home long-term, it’s wise to consider some home-improvement options to make your residence as safe as possible. Tidy up your living areas to remove tripping hazards, or install extra railings along stairs or grab bars in the bathroom. Equip your home with a security system and make sure your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are functioning. Create a plan for what to do in case of an emergency.
- Planning Ahead – We can experience greater peace of mind when we know that all of our affairs are in order. If you haven’t already done so, making official plans for your future care wishes and financial goals can offer the benefits of security and confidence for the future. This could be the year you meet with an estate planner or legal advisor to ensure your loved ones are taken care of should disaster strike.
- Building Social Connections – It’s easy to lose touch with others as we get older. Due to retirement, limited mobility, or a slew of other reasons, seniors often suffer from social isolation. Staying socially active, though, can offer countless benefits, from better emotional health to meaningful living. Make it a priority this year to keep your social connections strong. Maybe you can start having weekly dinners with family or reconnect with old friends.
- Learning Something New – It’s never too late to learn new tricks. If you’ve found yourself restless or bored lately, then starting a new hobby is the perfect senior living resolution for you! Try an activity you’ve always thought about but never had time for. Take up an adult education course at a local college. Expanding your skill set and pastimes can help you see the world from new perspectives, meet new people and discover new things about yourself.
- Giving Back – Making the resolution to volunteer or find ways to contribute to your community helps others and yourself. Giving back is shown to positively affect those who give their time and talents just as much as those who receive them. Depending on where you live, you may not even be aware of all the possibilities available for helping our your community. Do some research and find an area of need that matches your interests and abilities.
- Downsizing – By the time we retire, most of us don’t have the need for a big home as we did when raising families. Sometimes, it makes more sense to downsize to a smaller house or move to a senior living community. Not only do seniors typically save money in the long run, but they find their physical space better suits their needs and desires when they’ve eliminated unnecessary rooms and belongings. If this describes you, maybe this is the year you make the move!
- Checking Off Bucket List Items – We all have those goals and adventures we’d like to experience before our time is up. Even though that’s likely a long way off, why wait to check off a few items? Choose a few goals that you’ve always wanted to accomplish, and make sure you do them this year. Want to travel to India? Start planning now. Want to beat a world record? Go for it! Want to go skydiving? Maybe talk to your doctor first. The point is, it’s not too late to go after your dreams. This is the year you can make them happen!
GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR SENIOR LIVING RESOLUTION!
Whatever you choose to do this year, do it with ambition and integrity. Put your heart and soul into your activities and make this year count. We hope we’ve provided you with some inspiration for how you can make the most of your senior living lifestyle.
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