If you have been hibernating for the past several months, you are not alone. Winter is a time when many people find it difficult to go out, make plans, engage in activities and be social. And if you are an older adult, possibly living alone, it can be even harder.
Social isolation is a common feeling for people of all ages, but especially older adults, and it impacts our mental health, our chance of developing Alzheimer’s disease, and our overall mood.
So how do you make a change that will improve your quality of life? How do you get out of your own way!? Start by deciding you want to get out, see other people, and enjoy some new experiences.
Make a commitment to get out every day for one week, even if that means simply stepping out onto the front lawn or back porch for 5-10 minutes. The following week, do this twice a day, and so on.
Talk to one person a day. Call a friend or say hi to a neighbor. This could lead to future plans and increased motivation to improve your daily life.
If you have a friend or relative to help you find things to do and maybe do some things with you, call them.
Check your church bulletin for activities that interest you.
Check the newspaper and library for local activities and events.
Look for groups that need volunteers: hospitals, schools, etc.
Can you start or join a book group?
If you need help with transportation, ask for it. A neighbor, a church volunteer, a home care agency, and Uber are all good options.
Don’t let excuses get in your way. It’s time to JUST DO IT. You deserve it!