Aging can be a kick in the pants. It happens so gradually most of us don’t realize we’ve become “old,” until someone younger starts calling us “Sir” or “Mam” and it’s not out of respect.
It’s true, even if you are healthy, fit and in shape, a 55-year-old is going to have a tough time keeping up with a 20 something.
But that doesn’t mean life is over, or we need to accept aging as a determent to living a full life…heck no! It means we need to practice better self-care to stay healthy, fit, and in shape for a 55+-year-old.
Let’s take a look at nine easy ways to practice self-care and get the most out of life!
Find a Hobby
Hobbies are a great way to keep your mind and body moving. If you had a hobby but quit, examine why.
Was it due to lack of time or effort?
Could you learn a skill to help you improve what you were doing?
Hobbies are enjoyable. They can help you de-stress, and you can often share the process or results with other people. Sharing the gift of time or an actual item will make you happy and is guaranteed to bring a smile to your friend’s face.
Yes, as we get older sleep may be allusive. However, the cause may be something different than what you think it is. Try to turn down the lights and turn off the TV an hour before you plan to go to sleep. Maybe that coffee at lunch was not the best idea? Food choices can also affect your sleep.
You may be taking medication or dealing with aches and pains that are causing night time disruptions. You could find a supplement like melatonin to add to your nightly routine to help you sleep. You could also research over-the-counter sleep aids.
Sleep is necessary for healing, memory, and overall wellness. If you’re not getting enough, take the time to find out why and how to fix it.
Even as a fully mature adult, it may not be the best thing to have dessert for dinner. Just saying…rules of proper nutrition not only apply to you when you are over 55, but it’s also more critical than before.
High-quality protein, fats, and vegetables with fruit as a dessert are the most manageable changes you can make to improve your diet.
Now that you’re fully rested and nourished try adding a little more activity to your day. Exercise does not need to be overwhelming. A stroll through a local park or walking the trails through High Cliff cannot only bring the benefits of exercise but being in nature.
You may enjoy long bike rides, dancing, or lifting weights to keep up your strength and that’s great! However, know there is extensive proof that a brisk 30 minute walk every day can add to your well being.
Quite a few people in the 55+ category are on more than one medication. While Doctors are doing the best they can to treat illness and disease to improve your health, not everything needs a prescription.
Even a necessary dose of antibiotics can turn your digestive system on its head and cause a few issues.
Unless specified, you may want to start looking into alternative treatments for common illnesses and ailments. A good massage can help stiff and sore muscles feel better instead of taking ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Essential oils can help alleviate symptoms from headaches, allergies, and other minor illnesses.
You’ve done a great job so far, now relax. Seriously, find a masseuse, take a long shower or bath, try acupressure or acupuncture, talk a long walk in the woods.
Spend time with family or friends. Do something you enjoy to pamper yourself.
According to Michael Ashworth, Ph.D., Stress is linked to six different leading causes of death: heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide.
Along with pampering yourself, you may want to take breaks for you and do something you enjoy. If you don’t know what to do here is a shortlist from Good Therapy.
- Take warm, relaxing baths.
- Go for a walk in the park.
- Water and admire your plants.
- Fill the room with a lovely scent.
- Take a yoga class, or give yourself one.
- Listen to music.
- Have a pleasant visit with someone.
- Watch television.
- Go swimming.
- Give yourself enough time to do things, so you’re not always rushing.
- Laugh. This is very important. Among other things, laughter opens up the airways and pumps fresh air into your lungs. Also, it’s fun.
- Pet the cat, dog, or other pets.
Join a Church
If you are a religious person, staying connected or reconnecting with your faith is essential. You are connecting with God and other people.
At church, you can find help and support for problems you might have.
You can give up worldly worries at church and be yourself. There are many more benefits to being a church-goer. You can check out a few on Health Fitness Revolution.
Find Some Good Friends
I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “Laughter is the best medicine.” When you laugh, you produce endorphins, which naturally make you feel better.
Being with your friends and enjoying their support and laugher will improve your mood and health. If you’ve lost touch with close friends, invite them back into your life. Find a common activity you can participate in together and watch how your life will improve.
For more articles in my senior series visit http://annettehetrick.com/category/seniorseries/