10 New Year's Resolutions: A To-Do List for 2018
January 1 signifies a new beginning, a chance to reset. As author C.S. Lewis once said, “You are never too old to set another goal or dream a new dream.” Here are 10 ways to create change in the new year:
• Find creative ways to move your body. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), seniors need 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week. Consider yoga (or chair yoga), tai chi, water aerobics, or senior balance exercises. When it’s fun, you’ll be more likely to stick with it.
• Try something new. Just because we get older doesn’t mean we should settle into predictable routines. According to Psychology Today, learning something new can help reduce cognitive decline. There’s all kinds of ways to encourage this: concerts, museums, attractions, theater outings, etc.
• Write a heartfelt handwritten letter. Writing can be fun and fulfilling, and the recipient will appreciate the thoughtful gesture.
• Drink more water. The benefits of drinking enough water include keeping hunger at bay, warding off fatigue, and boosting metabolism.Shoot for eight glasses of water a day (refilling a water bottle can help with this). If you’re not a fan of plain water, jazz it up with lemon slices, strawberries, or cucumbers, or buy carbonated water.
• Do something nice for yourself. Once a week (or month) do something just for you—buy flowers, indulge in your favorite treat, take a bubble bath. Our reality is made up of our perceptions, so when you tell yourself that you deserve nice things, you can start focusing on the positives in life.
• Start a “grateful jar.” Gratitude has many powerful psychological and physical benefits. This could be as simple as writing down that you’re grateful for a warm bed, clothes, your room. This exercise is training your brain to think happy thoughts. When you’re having a bad day, pull out the notes you’ve jotted down as a reminder of what you have to be grateful for.
• Begin every day with stretching. If you don’t stretch your muscles as you age, they’ll shorten—leading to the potential for muscle damage, strains, and joint pain. The way to stay limber as we get older is to stretch every day. It can help us to move safely and avoid injury.
• Organize your photos. You can’t enjoy your photos when they’re packed away in boxes. Spend time organizing them to display in scrapbooks, in online photo books, or on gallery shelves.
• Write down your family history. Families want to know their lineage and family history—and they want to know your memories and stories! Invest in a journal-type memory book, complete with thought-provoking questions.
• Read more books. Reading can enhance memory, sharpen decision-making skills, reduce stress, and even help you sleep better. Plus, it’s fun.
Here at Catholic Eldercare, we’re helping seniors fulfill their New Year’s resolutions every day. If you’d like to learn more about our mission and how we do that, please call 612-370-1370.