Jan 1, 2021
Now that we have bid a fond farewell to 2020, many of us are considering what changes we might want to make for 2021. It’s time to make our New Year’s Resolutions. But, as most of us have discovered, it’s easier to make a resolution than to keep it.
Many experts on changing habits suggest that New Year’s Resolutions should be simple steps to take toward a larger goal. With that thought, here are a few resolutions that seniors and their home caregivers might want to consider.
Resolutions for Seniors for 2021:
- Exercise your brain. Try to exercise your brain by learning something new– take an online class, do crossword puzzles, or play video games. These are all great ways to keep your mind busy, which helps maintain function and keeps the mind sharp and alert.
- Eat right. When you eat healthier and get the right amounts of nutrients and vitamins, you’ll be able to stay active and remain independent longer. A good diet in your later years reduces your risk of osteoporosis, high blood pressure, heart diseases and certain cancers.
- See your doctor. Many of us skipped our annual medical checkups and screenings last year. If you haven’t been for a while, make a point to make an appointment for a checkup as soon as reasonable. A visit to the doctor is your chance and talk with your physician about all of the different factors affecting your health, make sure your medications are in order, and discuss any concerns you may have.
- Socialize and/or volunteer. Isolation and depression—both of which lead to poor health—have increased in the past year due to forced social distancing. For those able to do so, volunteering can provide safe socialization with added benefits. Studies show that volunteering, helping others, and/or donating to charities leads to happiness and well-being. Don’t know where to start? SeniorCare’s RSVP Volunteers of the North Shore are always looking for new volunteers to help out in a variety of ways.
- Be grateful. It’s important concentrate on things you’re thankful for. Being grateful is good for you. According to a recent study, thankfulness is good for the brain, helps to relieve stress, depression and addictions, and it’s good for your body. Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and they report feeling healthier.
2021 Resolutions for Home Caregivers:
- Take a day off. Caregiving isn’t easy. What is easy is to forget to take care of yourself. Try to take a break from caregiving duties for a few minutes every day – and try to take an occasional day off. If possible and safe, find a friend or family member to help out for the day. The important thing is to take some time to recharge and give yourself some TLC.
- Talk with your loved one and fellow caregivers. Whether sharing memories or taking on the heavy task of discussing care options, it’s important to keep a two-way line of communication open. You’ll make sure everyone is on the same page, and you’ll find it a great way to bond with your elderly loved one.
- Monitor your loved one’s finances and documents. Take some time to help your loved one plan for future needs and make sure their finances are in order and that someone has power of attorney if it becomes necessary. Be sure to make sure all of their end-of-life documents – will, medical directive, etc. – are in place. By having everything in order and in one place, you can make sure their final wishes are carried out the way they want them to be.
- Exercise. When you have a few minutes away from caregiving, you may just want to take a nap. Caregiving is hard work and it takes a lot out of you. But try to take those few minutes and get some exercise. Physical activity can help prevent you from getting sick, help you sleep better, and give you more energy. When you feel good, you’re sure to be a better caregiver.
- Join a Support Group. Support groups are comprised of other caregivers who are experiencing the same issues as you are. Call SeniorCare at 978-281-1750 and speak with our Caregiver Support Specialist to learn about Caregiver Support Groups.
I would like to wish everyone a wonderful New Year!