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6 Stress Management Tips for Seniors

Aug 2 2013 - Posted by: Elizabeth Bemis to Assisted Living

De-Stressing Tips for Seniors - United Methodist Homes~“You must learn to let go. Release the stress. You were never in control anyway.” ~

-Steve Maraboli.

Ironically, retirement is supposed to be the time when you relax and play golf, a time when you are older and wiser and now have the answers to many of life’s questions. However, with aging comes new concerns, such as managing your health, how to fund retirement, and a general sense of “loss.”

These new challenges can be worrisome and keep you up at night. To help seniors release stress and take pleasure living in the moment, these six (6) ways to de-stress will do some good.

Number 1: Jot-It-Down--Find a Short-Term Solution to Your Worries

While distractions may help in the moment, they don’t help to address the root cause of your stress; it still lurks near the forefront of your mind.  Identify what it is, write it down and find a tentative solution. It may be helpful to talk about it with a friend, confidante or trained counselor to get a speedy resolution.

Number 2: Read Words of Inspiration or Just Read…

Find a story that inspires you! Read a biography that shares the story of a hero, find a poem that quiets your soul, or enjoy a piece of classic literature. Stories from the Bible are filled with acts of courage, trials that were overcome, and proverbial words of wisdom. Make reading  a regular habit and allow yourself to simply read because it gives you pleasure and enjoyment.

Number 3: Meditate and Be Thankful

Meditation is easier than you think. Start with choosing a comfortable area and try practicing some deep breathing. Eliminate distractions around you and take several deep breaths until you find yourself becoming calm; it’s easier to do when you think about things in your life you are most thankful for. Allow yourself to relax and find a quiet inner place of peace, where you can feel content and at rest.

Number 4: Play with a Pet!

Play with a pet! Take a walk with your dog, cuddle your cat. Pets offer soothing comfort to their owners; they are fun, loving, companions known for their ability to improve mental well-being. If you’ve never owned a pet, consider getting one. Seniors in assisted living and senior care communities have the opportunity to cuddle and stroke “visiting pets,” often part of a community’s pet therapy program.

Number 5: Change the Pace – Go Mall Browsing!

An indoor or outdoor shopping mall is a perfect place to do something different with your day. Shopping or browsing is a popular pastime for seniors, and it’s easy to see why. Mall browsing always offers something new or different: you can simply enjoy the ambiance, the comfortable temperature and the interesting people who walk by. Browse through books or magazines at the bookstore; try some local cuisine at a new restaurant, indulge in a latte  at the coffee shop; buy a gift for someone special or meet up with friends. Take advantage of a nice day and shop outside, or avoid the elements and stay inside. Either way, an ordinary shopping mall can be filled with possibilities!

Number 6: Take Care of Yourself- Exercise, Explore the Outdoors and Don’t Forget to Laugh

Be intentional about taking care of yourself. Develop healthy eating habits and don’t neglect your rest. A good night’s sleep can revive your body, mind, and spirit. Daily exercise can give you a sense of accomplishment and help to refresh your mood.. Whenever you feel like you are starting to fall into the rut of stressful habits, try spending some time outdoors. Take an exploratory walk and invite some friends along to socialize. Find a new trail, visit a garden, or sit out on the front porch.  If you feel trapped inside all day, even a few moments to step outside and enjoy the sun can make a difference. Finally, take some time to laugh and enjoy a funny movie, a witty remark, or a comic strip, as we all know the value of a good sense of humor!

Key Takeaways:

  • Identify the cause of your stress; write it down and find a tentative solution to put your mind at ease.
  • Find a story that inspires you and take some time to read for your own pleasure, enjoyment, or spiritual healing.
  • Learn to meditate. Practice deep breathing until you find yourself becoming calm; it’s easier to do when you think about things in life you are most thankful for.
  • Seniors in assisted living and senior care communities have the opportunity to cuddle and stroke “visiting pets,” as part of a community’s pet therapy program.
  • Switch up your regular routine. Mall browsing always offers something new and different: you can simply enjoy the ambiance, the shops, and the interesting people who walk by.
  • Be intentional about taking care of yourself, and enjoy some time outdoors to lift your mood and refresh your spirit.

Assisted and Independent Living

At United Methodist Homes Assisted and Indpendent Living Communities, we work with our residents to provide a realtionship-centered philosophy and assist our residents in living a stress-free life. If you are interested in learning more about United Methodist Homes please visit our website www.umh.org.

About Elizabeth Bemis

In 1998, I drove past an assisted living community construction site, learned that it was part of United Methodist Homes and realized the next stop on my professional journey was to work for a mission driven organization. Soon after, I joined the team as Executive Director of our Middlewoods of Farmington community and later served as Regional Manager for the Middlewoods properties before accepting my current role as Vice President of Marketing, Promotions, and Assisted Living Operations. I enjoy spending time with my family, cooking, reading, walking, and love working alongside our staff, residents, and families to build strong communities that reflect the mission, vision, and values of United Methodist Homes.

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