Getting older is not as easy or as fun as many of us thought it would be. You don’t have as much energy as you used to and parts of your body that you didn’t know you had may hurt at unusual times. However, you are not doomed to accepting the advent of old age without a fight; there are steps you can take to feel young again. Some of these items require changes in your activities while others may necessitate mental changes. These are not too difficult and you can start today!
Start an Exercise Regimen
Regular exercise can have numerous health benefits as you age. Even If you have not been physically active before, starting an exercise regimen can still help you physically going forward. Exercise can help you stave off heart disease and diabetes and it can improve your appearance, relieve stress and moderate your mood. It can also help you maintain your independence which is very important. Any type of exercise – from time at the gym to exercise videos at home – can be great and keep you feeling vital and young.
(Also read: Best Exercises For Seniors & Adults.)
Get Some Sleep
Make sure you get enough sleep. Many people get so busy that they don’t maintain good sleep habits which make you feel groggy and lethargic. Older people also often suffer from insomnia – because of anxiety, health issues or medications. Improving your sleep habits or finding out what may be causing your sleep problems (with your doctor’s help) can help you feel better and make you more ready to face the next day!
Take a Trip (or Two)
Feeling a bit constrained? Take a trip. A short day trip or a longer trek can help expand your mind and your point of view. You can also get a better perspective on your own situation or problems by seeing other people or populations and what problems they may be facing. With senior discounts and prices, you can travel within your budget to most destinations. There are also several travel clubs like Elderhostel or ElderTrek where groups of seniors plan trips to different locations throughout the year.
Volunteer Your Time
Once you retire, you may have a significant amount of downtime and you may not know how to fill all of your new-found time. Volunteering is an activity that you could consider that would be beneficial to both you and the people you help.
How does volunteering help you feel younger? You are actively helping people who need you which can give you a sense of purpose. People who volunteer also have better health, according to the Corporation of National and Community Service, with lower rates of depression, lower mortality rates and more chances at physical and social activities. Volunteering also decreases loneliness, which may be more common in the elderly. Older volunteers reap greater benefits from volunteering because they may be at higher risk for health issues as they age. You can choose any number of activities to participate in – from helping children to assisting other older people who may be unable to get out.
Visit the Great Outdoors
Spending time outdoors can make you feel young and spry. Benefits of being outside include increased levels of vitamin D, which can help fight osteoporosis and depression, and exposure to light can elevate your mood. Being outside also increases the odds that you will get more exercise as well. Spending time outside is good for the body and mind.
Spend Time with Your Grandchildren (or Other Youngsters)
Spending time playing or interacting with young people can make you feel young at heart as well. You can offer support and input to the youngster while you can experience the activities and music that your grandchildren are interested in and also get points of view from a young perspective. Older people can develop deep, meaningful relationships with their grandchildren or other young people who may need an adult role model.
Remember the Romance
Just because you are older doesn’t mean that you are not interested in romantic relationships any more. If you are in a committed relationship, foster that relationship by finding the romance: candlelit dinners, romantic getaways or a movie date. If you are single, you can look for someone to spend time with. Your friends can introduce you to potential dates, you may meet people through your other activities, or you can try online dating. There are numerous dating services geared towards older people. The AARP has even launched a dating service.
Join a Club
Another way to feel you is to join a club or two. There are numerous organizations aimed at older adults focusing on a variety of activities and hobbies. These clubs allow you to have social interactions as well as help you maintain emotional balance. Some national clubs include SeniorNet for computer knowledge, The Red Hat Society for women 50 and older and the AARP. Your city may also have a club for seniors that holds regular meetings and activities. Check the Internet or call the city helpline to get more information.
While you are out helping everyone else, don’t forget about yourself! It is important to take some time for yourself – such as getting a massage or a shopping trip. Doing something fun for yourself can renew your spirit and revive your soul.
Bottom Line: Get Moving to Feel Young Again
Most of these activities require some action on your part, as activity is an important part of feeling young. Try to stay active and engaged with others and you may be able to be vital and alert well into your advanced years.