The physical health and well-being of your aging family member, friend or dear relative are common factors that may encourage you to entrust a senior retirement community with their welfare. Their mental health is another factor that should be considered, and it’s often through participating in various activities and maintaining hobbies that will greatly improve their time at a community. A big benefit to senior retirement communities is the social element.
Senior communities not only offer the friendship and the companionship of others with similar interests, but also a roster of engaging activities. This article will give you some tips on helping your loved one make the most out of the activities offered by their senior community.
Complete an Inventory of Activities They Currently Enjoy
If you’re currently in the market for, or just completing preliminary research on a retirement community, ensure the community offers at least one favourite hobby or activity your loved one can enjoy. This will play a huge role in making the transition into this new chapter easier, more comfortable and familiar.
If they already reside in a community and you’ve noticed they don’t offer any activities that appeal to your relative or friend, don’t be afraid to reach out and suggest it to the staff. Senior communities are incredibly customer-oriented, and will typically do their best to welcome suggestions and accommodate their residents.
Work to Re-Discover Old Hobbies or Interests
There are many activities that can be reignited once your loved one is in a community. Perhaps it’s a skill, such as painting, music or singing; or an activity, such as gardening, volunteering or cooking. Maybe it’s a sport such as yoga, dancing or golf. Whatever their interest, it’s important to remind your family member of past activities and hobbies they once enjoyed and can bring back during this new chapter. Reigniting old interests may encourage a sense of independence, autonomy and familiarity.
Encourage Them to Leave Their Comfort Zone
If you find that your loved one is stuck in a rut, or simply doesn’t have any hobbies at the moment, now is the perfect time to encourage them to try something new. Worst case scenario is they can say they tried something once but it wasn’t for them; but, they may find their new favourite activity and meet others with similar interests. Regardless of the activity, it will help expand their community, foster a positive outlook, and enrich their time in their new home.
Ensuring that your loved one stays active and maintains their favourite hobbies, or discovers new interests should be fun, effortless and rewarding. Engaging in enjoyable activities allows them to thrive, and allows them to find new passions. This benefits both their physical and mental well-being in a myriad of ways, and may just take some gentle persuasion to get them started from a dear friend or relative.