Every person needs to have their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs taken care of daily. That includes seniors who may be starting to find daily life more strenuous. There are many fun activities that can help keep a person moving, alert mentally, emotionally stable and spiritually fed. Here are some activities that you may want to consider encouraging a senior in your life to do.
Physical Activities for Seniors
Taking a daily walk with a senior is a great way to keep them moving. Turn on some marching music, and pretend to march from a seated position. Cut a swimming noodle in half and let them use it as a pretend fishing rod while listening to you tell a story about a fish that got away or they tell one to you. Encourage them to help you prepare simple meals by stirring ingredients together or let them help you slice foods. Blow up balloons and let them try to kick it into a goal. If the senior can no longer walk, then encourage them to move their arms as much as possible.
Mental Activities for Seniors
It is important that a senior keep their mind alert. Play a simple game of cards with them. Let them read you a story from their favorite book or encourage them to join a book club. If their eyesight is failing, then help them listen to a book on audiotape or the radio. Have them tell you about something that happened when they were little. Take them to interesting places like the theater, a school musical or even the grocery store. Create a list of their friends and encourage them to call a different one each day of the week. There are many nonprofits who could benefit from the help of a senior. Even if they are homebound, they can still answer phone calls to helplines, fold newsletters or do a multitude of other tasks. Encourage them to make a craft to decorate their homes for a holiday.
Emotional Activities for Seniors
Depression is a major problem for many seniors. Some may enjoy having a pet even if it is a guinea pig or rabbit that does not require going outside. Others may enjoy going to the beauty or barber shop to get their hair done. Still, others may enjoy gardening as playing in the dirt has been shown to release happy hormones in the body. Some seniors enjoy participating in activities like photography and showing their work online. Others may enjoy a new hobby like woodworking where they can take great pride in their workmanship. Often seniors love journaling and being able to hand down their life story to a younger generation. If seniors have trouble writing anymore, then consider videotaping or recording these memoirs on an audio tape.
Spiritual Activities for Seniors
Many seniors find guided meditation a fun way to relax and fulfilling. Other seniors love to be an active volunteer. Even if they can not get out of bed, they can still do activities like making knitted hats for the homeless. Invite their friends to come over to dinner and play a moving movie after supper. Suggest that a religious class allow you to let the homebound senior attend a class by using Skype. If the senior enjoys praying for others, then make sure that you get them a current list of needs by either collecting them off social media or contacting their religious institution to make sure that the senior is kept abreast of people who need prayer. Let the senior create note cards with personalized cheery messages to send to their friends.
There are a multitude of ways that seniors can still make a difference in the world. Use these ideas and your own ingenuity to make sure that their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs are being met regularly.