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Self Care Ideas for Seniors

It can be hard to remember to incorporate self care into your day to day life, but it is necessary when maintaining your mental and physical health. Sometimes all you need is a few self care ideas on how to start providing yourself with this necessary and overlooked part of healthcare.

What is self care?

Self care is an important coping method for dealing with stress. Self care can and will be different for every individual, and depends on what a person needs to wind down. Self care is not just for people who struggle with a mental disorder, but for anyone that is dealing with stress. Self care is all about helping you improve or retain a positive mood.

Practice self care

Practicing self care can mean something different for each individual, but generally it is something simple that engages your senses. An easy technique is sensory soothing. It can help your mind focus and restore a positive mood.

But self care isn’t just about your mental health. Keeping yourself physically healthy is part of self care. Whether you lift weights or go on a walk, something that gets your heart rate elevated can help with stress.

Spend time outdoors

Immersing yourself in nature is known to have a calming effect on your mind and that can help with your stress and anxiety. Some prefer to have alone time while outdoors, while others enjoy a walk or hike with a close friend or family member. Other examples can include swimming in a community park or taking your furry friend to the dog park. 

Whatever your preference, spending some time in nature can help calm your nerves and emotional well-being. 

Gratitude diary

It can be hard to see the silver lining in things when so much is changing and you become frustrated with life changes. Aging can be difficult, and if you feel like you’re losing control you once had, it can cause spikes in stress and anxiety. It is important that you try to see the positive in your life.

One way to start that is by keeping a gratitude diary. You can write down all of the positive things in your life or the good things happen during your day. By writing about what you are grateful for, you will see an active shift in your mood and mental health.

Regular socialization

No matter your age, socializing is important. Anxiety and depression can be especially bad if you are feeling isolated. 

A good way to avoid feeling lonely is by setting up regular lunch or dinner plans with a friend or family. If you are not up for this regularly, a simple phone call or text message can also help with your mental health and self care.

Don’t forget that you can also do a video chat whether it’s through Skype or FaceTime to chat with your friends and family that may be too far away for regular visits.

Book club

Reading regularly helps with your mental stimulation and keeps your mind young and flexible. Letting a book help you get your imagination going is a great self care and mental health tool.

In addition to reading, you can join or start a book club to help socialize and find people who are interested in similar things as you. If you are unsure of any local book clubs, try talking to a local library or college. It is common for placing like these to have moderated groups for readers.

See a therapist

There was once a stigma associated with therapy or counseling,  but we know that the benefits therapy provides to your mental health far outweigh any social stigma that may arise. You may not think that therapy is something you need, but it is all about self care and improving your mental health. 

Explore hobbies

There is a hobby out there for everyone. If you struggle with mobility issues, it doesn’t have to hold you back when it comes to hobbies and mental stimulation.

Some activities that don’t require a lot of movement include baking, knitting, playing a musical instrument, and many more.

Get creative

There is no time like retirement to get creative and try something new. You could learn a new skill and embrace the creative side of your brain you may not have previously had time for.

Activities such as drawing, pottery, and painting are all good ways to start. You can also find classes locally for many of them.

Being creative can come with health benefits. Creative activities can help people who are battling with a chronic illness by decreasing negative feelings. Creative projects are known to help reduce stress and anxiety as well.

Games

Games are not only fun, but they also help you keep your mind sharp. The options to pick from are extremely broad in the style, goal, and amount of people playing.

You can go with a classic board or card games, a virtual game on your phone or tablet, crossword puzzles, or jigsaw puzzles. Whatever you prefer, there is something for you.

Self care can be easy to lose track of if you don’t stay on top of it. These self care ideas can easily be incorporated into your everyday life and help you stay on top of your mental and physical health.

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Hannah Verret
Hannah Verret is a Content Developer at Med-Alert Pros in Memphis, TN. Hannah has been working in content creation throughout her entire adult career. When Hannah isn't writing or organizing social media posts, she's spending her time reading and loving on her many pets.

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