For when the great outdoors aren’t all that great – too cold, too icy, too snowy, rainy, or hot (you get the idea).
Being “cooped up” inside can make anyone go stir crazy. Instead of reaching for the remote control, try one of these ideas to keep you stimulated, engaged and entertained.
In my opinion, no television show or movie can compare to a good book. Books open the mind and stimulate imagination. You can get lost in a new world, gain knowledge and understand different perspectives. Beyond this, reading has been shown to reduce stress, enhance memory, delay the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s, and sharpen decision-making skills. You can even make reading social by joining a book club. Meet up once a month to discuss the plot, characters, and what you took away from the book.
- Build and create. From model building kits to Lego (with or without the grandkids), quilting and knitting to scrapbooking, there are many benefits to be had. Seniors can enjoy these activities on their own or as part of a group which adds a nice social aspect. Building and crafting are great for dexterity, hand-eye coordination, imagination and problem solving. Not to mention, they are relaxing and fun! An additional benefit, you can sell your creations or donate them to local hospitals or community centers.
- Grow an indoor garden. Plants are extremely therapeutic. They brighten up a room, purify the air, and are a great way to bring the outdoors in. Aloe Vera is one of my favourite plants because it does more than just clean the air and look pretty, you can use the liquid found inside the leaves to soothe burns and heal wounds! Herbs are another great option because fresh herbs are so flavourful and will save you money by growing your own.
- Become a gamer. Board, card or video, games are a fun way to pass the time indoors. Invite a few people over and play the classics, host a tournament, or go online to play an individual game or play against others. Some healthy competition (even if it is against yourself) will get your mind going and keep boredom at bay.
- Exercise. Physical exercise should be part of your daily routine. If the weather isn’t conducive to getting out for a walk or driving to the gym, you can still get your heart rate up at home. Stationary bikes are a safe way to get your active minutes in at home (especially if you are by yourself) because they are propelled by the rider. Alternatively, you could go up and down the stairs, practice yoga, use canned goods as weights, or try a game of tennis or get dancing with the help of a video game console.
If you want to find new social circles or make friends in your area, join an online community. Amintro is for those 50 plus looking to make new friends and find like-minded people. We are about living life to the fullest, and that means living a socially engaged life.
By Christine Tompa