With 2018 soon to be in the rearview mirror, millions of Americans will
optimistically make New Year's resolutions, the most common of which
are: eating healthier; exercising more; and spending less money. While
these resolutions are beneficial across the board, as we age our needs
change, and so too should our resolutions.
ATRIO Health Plans is committed to helping older adults live their happiest,
healthiest lives. The resolutions below are designed with precisely that
goal in mind.
Exercise your brain-Exercising regularly is central to good health, and for seniors, a core
component of their workout routines should include stimulating their brains
by: reading often; tackling challenging crossword or jigsaw puzzles; enrolling
in a community college course — to cite just a few examples.
Don't ignore depression–Roughly one in five older adults suffer from depression or anxiety.
Don't assume that prolonged sadness, frequent tiredness, or an ongoing
loss of appetite are simply part of aging; they're not. Instead, they
are mental health issues that should be discussed with your healthcare provider.
Become a volunteer–Most people view volunteering as a means of helping others, and that's
certainly true. It's equally true, however, that the volunteer reaps
significant benefits in the form of experiencing a sense of accomplishment,
fulfillment, and increased self-confidence.
Reach out to old friend–Having meaningful relationships is fundamental to well-being. If you've
lost touch with a once-close friend, the new year is an ideal time to
reach out — pick up the phone, send an email, or write a letter.
Chances are good that both you and the recipient will be glad you did.
Join the digital world–Another means of rekindling or preserving relationships is through the
digital world. If the internet and social media are foreign to you, ask
a family member or friend to introduce you to the wonders of the World
Wide Web. Classes for beginners also are often offered at community colleges
and senior centers. It's never too late to become an internet surfer,
as evidenced by the fact that seniors are among the fastest-growing demographic
groups on Facebook.
Reignite a pastime passion–Pursuing a hobby with passion is not only enjoyable, it's mentally
and potentially physically (depending on the hobby) beneficial. If you
once had a hobby that's fallen off your radar, make 2019 the year
it reemerges. If you've never had a hobby, make 2019 the year you
Explore senior-living options–The best time to explore senior-living options is well before you actually
need to select one. So, if you're approaching retirement age, or if
you've retired recently, learning about the different types of living
options for older adults should be high on your to-do list. Organizations
such as the
American Association of Retired Persons are a good place to start.
Here's to 2019 being the year that resolutions were made, and —
more importantly — the year that resolutions were kept!