Wednesday, January 7, 2009

New Year's Resolutions for Seniors -- and the rest of us!

Each year, many of us make New Year’s resolutions or set goals for the new year. I recently read an article with suggestions for seniors, but it sounds like many of the suggestions could apply to almost anyone.

What did the article suggest?

Visit a senior center. Senior centers are spread through out the Atlanta metro area. SCS manages eight of them. Visit our website for locations at Senior centers are not “just a bunch of old people.” The senior centers are alive with all sorts of activities including games, crafts, lectures, exercise classes, educational courses, special interest clubs, entertainment, travel, parties and dances and hot lunches. Involved seniors are alive and vibrant and in reasonably good health.

Plan to eat healthy meals. Make is a goal to eat at least one nutritious, healthy meal each day. Drive on by the drive through window. Avoid fast food. Invite a friend to eat a healthy meal with you.

Increase your social contacts. You can do this at a senior center, through volunteer activities, at a social club, church, synagogue or mosque.

Clean house. Go through and donate unused or unwanted items. Arrange to give them to family, friends or charity. Find someone who would like that item you have been saving for 50 years in case you ever need it again. Bite the bullet and get rid of it.

Get some exercise. Plan on a daily walk. Walk with a friend or engage a companion to walk with you. Senior centers offer exercise classes. If you don’t want to go out and can afford a treadmill, purchase one for your residence and set it up in front of a TV.

Engage your mind. Enroll in an adult education class. Many are short term and offer opportunities for a wide variety of interests. It is important to keep both body and mind fit. Regular mental stimulation will help you stay sharp, reduce memory loss, and some say, prevent or delay Alzheimer’s disease. Start a new hobby (senior center can help); teach your hobby to another, perhaps a grandchild, join a book club or books-on-tape club.

These are all great ideas for seniors – and for all of us. Have a safe and happy new year!

-- by Steve Hargrove
Director of Events and Marketing

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