New Year, New Habits: The importance of resolutions for older folks

During January and beyond, the morning talk shows are ripe with ideas for healthier living, streamlined routines, technology hacks and more. The point is, viewers should be setting attainable goals and sticking to them. This aspirational motivation is relevant for older viewers in TV land and in our real lives. Why shouldn’t seniors try to improve their lives in a feel-good way? They should, and here’s some fodder to help your elderly loved one get started.

  1. Focus on the social life. If it’s already robust and sometimes overwhelming, that’s kind of a nice problem to have, but may be worth streamlining a bit to make it more enjoyable. But if the socializing could be beefed up, try to weave in engagements that are regular and reliable, like book talks at the library or prayer groups at your local place of worship. Help integrate events that are not likely to get cancelled and create confusion or disappointment.
  2. Focus on the physical movement. Your mother-in-law is complaining about her back, knees and hips and how sore she is after her thrice weekly physical therapy. Even though she needs a day to recover from the therapy, the alternative is worse. You’ve heard that sitting is the new smoking, right? Any chance you can get to help your senior stay in motion should be taken.
  3. Focus on the mental rigor. Sitting on your recliner watching television all day is downright mind-numbing. Try to mix things up and listen to a podcast while riding as a passenger on the way to the doctor; get more familiar with your smartphone or tablet and download apps that keep you sharp like Words with Friends or keep you informed like The Weather Channel.
  4. Focus on the happy factor. If more time with family makes Grandma happy, then see what you can do to accommodate her wishes. That could be done over Skype or FaceTime on a regularly scheduled basis, too. Just don’t be surprised if you want to make a phone date and she’s too busy with her Bible study or Epicurean group to chat all of a sudden, after implementing her resolutions!

For more ideas on healthy resolutions for seniors, read this: