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Great ways to have a Cheerful and Positive New Year!
There are ways to prevent holiday blues, and have a fulfilling New Year! It’s time to nurture you, and to care for the little things that warm your soul in 2014! Whether you have family going out of town, or just spending the holidays a lone, there are ways to make this time of year exciting and open to all sorts of positive possibilities.
1. Creative ways to connect with loved ones:
If loved ones will be put of town make arrangements to set up times to call. FaceTime and Skype are great options to interact and see family and friends during calls.
2. Social events:
Accept social invitations from friends and co-workers. This is a great way to combat feelings of loneliness and also promotes friendships and company.
3. Stay active & healthy:
Taking care of your physical and mental health contribute to a positive start to the new year. There are many programs that offer exercise programs and other groups where seniors can connect. Some fun activities include walking in the park, yoga, meditation, and swimming. Consult with your physician and nutritionist to determine which activities and health diet best fit your lifestyle needs.
There are individuals who prefer more consistent social interactions and day-to-day companionship. Some home health services offer additional visits by nurse or other professionals to offer companionship and care as needed. This service may not be included in your healthcare coverage plan, yet it is a resource provided by some home health agencies.
5. Step-out of your comfort zone:
Try new activities and senior groups in your area. Some options include the YMCA, senior clubs, Meet-ups, and more.
6. Challenge your mind:
Creative thinking, problem solving, and learning new information are excellent ways to stimulate the mind. There are many games and activities that promote good mental health like word-searches, puzzles, crossword puzzles, reading, and more.
7. Laugh a little:
Try renting a funny movie, or visiting a funny friend who brightens the day with laughter. Check local theaters for upcoming events and comedy shows. It's fun to get out and laugh a little.
8. Help someone in need:
Helping is not limited to soup kitchens and homeless shelters. There are many ways one can help, such as making dinner for a friend, walking a neighbor’s pet, accompanying a friend to the doctor’s office, or sharing time with someone who is may be a lone for the holidays.
9. Adopt a pet:
Animals are great companions for people of all ages. Adopting a little pal in need of a home is a great way to extend love and support.
11. The art of giving:
Send New Year cards to family and friends, or bake cookies for the nurses and other professionals who have been of great help this past year.
12. Embrace your home:
Aromatherapy and candles are delightful ways to change the ambiance in your home. Holiday décor also brightens the environment, adding creativity and changing your surroundings.
13. Music for the soul:
Turn on the radio, sit back, and enjoy your favorite beat! It’s time to sing, laugh, and move to the music that fuels your soul. The key is take time to unwind and do things that bring joy and peace.
14. Journaling thoughts:
Writing our thoughts is a therapeutic way of expressing our feelings. It also provides a timeline of events that can be reviewed at a later time. Make a list of your accomplishments in the previous year, and another list with goals and ambitions for 2014. Holding to personal commitments are just as important as keeping our commitments with others.
15. A Gift for you:
Think of something special you would like this New Year. Perhaps it’s red shoes, a Spa treatment, a movie, a travel destination, etc. It’s time to take care of you. There’s no limit to the gift amount, which is based on your financial ability and decisions. The key is not to wait for someone to give you what you want, and to do something nice for yourself this New Year.
What to do if you’re experiencing the holiday blues:
1. Try the suggestions listed above, and try to do activities that bring you joy and fulfillment.
2. Talk with your health care provider. Your physician may order tests to determine if your mood is seasonal or related to underlying medical concerns, or if certain medications may be the causing agents to changes in your mood.
3. If you are severely depressed and having negative thoughts please call 911. The 24-hour National Suicide Prevention can be reached at 1-800-273-8255, and their counselors can be reached at 1-800-799-4889.
4. Here is an online resource: www.helpguide.org/mental/depression_elderly.htm
* All information should be discussed with your healthcare provider prior to incorporating any suggestions in this article. This article is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide advice or direct client decisions.
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