Don't look back: leap forward

By Jonathan Acton - jonathan.acton@homeinstead.ie

Do you make New Year’s resolutions? I’m a bit of a joke for making resolutions that I never stick to. As one year ends and a new one begins, it’s a chance for a fresh start. Many people set goals such as starting new diets and exercise routines, however, they’re often restrictive and unsustainable. This can lead to quitting your resolutions just a few weeks into the new year.

I’ve researched the topic of resolutions to suit seniors that are very achievable. Here are my top 5 resolutions for seniors for 2021…

Sit Less, Move More

Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. Unfortunately, by age 75, one in three men and one in two women engage in no physical activity.

The good news is it’s never too late to start. So this year, why not make it a goal to sit less and move more!

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that older adults need about 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week.

This can be broken up into 30-minute workouts five days a week. Its good for the body, mind and overall happiness.

Stimulate Your Mind

Speaking of mind, the brain is an important organ that is responsible for everything we do from emotions and motor skills to vision, breathing, body temperature, hunger, and memory. This is why taking care of your brain health is so important. Incorporating brain exercises can be easy and is a sustainable and healthy New Year’s resolution you can make.

You can start slow by spending 10 to 20 minutes a day playing games such as crossword puzzles, Soduko, or even making a jigsaw puzzle. Stick on cCountdown for the craic oe maybe tipping point or the chase. Other ways to stimulate your mind include reading, writing, and learning a new skill.

Sleep Better

Good quality sleep is important at any age. It benefits your physical and emotional health from improving your concentration and memory to helping your body repair cell damage and more. If you feel like you could get better sleep make it a resolution for 2021.

The good news is there are things you can start doing now to get a better night’s rest. For starters, you’ll want to create a relaxing and inviting environment, unwind before bed, and stick to a sleep schedule.

Take Time for Self Care

You’ve spent your entire life taking care of others and now it’s time to really take care of yourself. In fact, self-care is an essential part of maintaining your health and can even help prevent chronic illnesses.

This year dedicate time for self-care. The first step is to make sure you view self-care as taking care of yourself and not as being selfish. Keep in mind, it doesn’t have to be complicated nor time-consuming. You can start small by enjoying a walk every day, getting a little extra sleep, or taking a bath. Choose to do things that bring you happiness.

Volunteer

If you don’t volunteer already this might be a good year to start. Volunteering can be great for seniors and offers plenty of health benefits. Research shows that volunteering can help reduce stress and may even lead to lower rates of depression.

Volunteering also helps you stay physically and mentally active. It can also give you a sense of purpose. Finally, it also helps you stay socially active as you’ll get to meet new people and develop new relationships.

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