Now more than ever, when it feels like so much in the world is going wrong, the importance of self-care is showing itself more and more. Self-care can take many forms: a long, hot bath with a bath bomb, treating yourself to a fancy drink at Starbucks, taking an afternoon nap, or even purchasing a new video game can all be ways of taking care of yourself when you’re stressed out.
However, when you’re a senior in independent living in Oceanside, CA, sometimes it can be a little more difficult to get out and do things to take care of yourself. However, there are plenty of ways that you can practice good self-care habits in the comfort of your own home to promote physical, mental, and emotional well-being.
So – what exactly can you do? Here are a couple of tips to get you started:
1. Get up and on your feet.
If you’re elderly, sometimes it can be more difficult to make the decision to get up and active. It’s easier to stay on the couch or in the recliner to catch up with your soaps, especially if you have a bit more trouble with mobility.
However, one of the best ways to practice self-care is to get moving. If you’re in independent living in Oceanside, CA, going outside and taking a walk through one of Bayshire Carlsbad’s many walking trails is a great way to get up and move around. If going outside and walking isn’t your speed, even doing a couple “laps” around your apartment can help get the blood flowing.
Going on walks isn’t for everyone, though. You could also try some strength training in one of our facilities on the premises, or you could even attend one of our Yoga or Tai Chi classes to get up and move. Doing cardio or heavier workouts isn’t going to be for everyone, after all, and people tend to have varying levels of comfort in difficulty in working out. But even just moving a little bit – 20 to 30 minutes a day – can have a profound effect on both your health and your mental well-being.
2. Lead a healthy lifestyle.
Sometimes, self-care can be as easy as making sure you’re getting enough sleep and that you’re eating well. As a senior, it’s more important than ever to make sure you’re practicing healthy habits that can lead to a better quality of life and improve your mental and physical well-being.
As seniors, it can be difficult to get your full eight hours of sleep. Aches and pains can make getting comfortable challenging, and sometimes it’s difficult to simply shut off our brains to rest. However, not getting enough sleep can have some really profound effects on your health. Not only does a lack of sleep drain your energy, it can affect your mood, your cognitive abilities, and even your diet.
Leading a healthy lifestyle is cyclical, though. Maintaining a good diet and eating healthier foods like lean meats, fish, veggies, fruits, and whole grains will help you keep your energy up all day instead of crashing on the couch in the afternoon and disrupting your sleep schedule.
Try eating a couple of new, healthy foods to expand your diet plan. If you aren’t sure where to start, try going out for lunch with some friends and sharing a couple of plates to see what you might like. Or, if that isn’t quite your speed, check out some of the meals prepared by our registered dietician here at our facility for independent living in Oceanside, CA. We’ve got new and exciting foods daily to check out, and maybe you’ll find something you like!
3. Remember to get outside with friends.
Taking care of your physical well-being is one thing, but it’s important to remember that the physical is not the only aspect of self care.
One of the most important things you can do at any age is simply hang out with friends. Go on a walk outside with a group, or join a class for a hobby you’ve never participated in. There are so many ways for you to broaden your horizons within your social circle, or even outside of it if you’re looking for something new.
If you aren’t able to get outside, then don’t hesitate to pick up the phone. It’s never been easier to get in contact with friends and family via phone call, text, or even video calls. Feeling isolated isn’t good for your emotional well-being, after all, and being proactive about keeping your relationships close can be amazing for your own self-care.
4. Clear the clutter.
If you’re like many people, the idea of creating a to-do list sounds more like work than something for self-care, but it can be beneficial in many ways. So many people find mental clutter exhausting, and getting rid of it by making things like to-do lists helps to ease their minds.
Create a to-do list for your mental checklist that’s been piling up. Even if it seems trivial, it doesn’t hurt to jot it down. Laying out everything that you need to do visually can help lessen the mental load and make the idea of getting everything accomplished more manageable.
If easing the mental clutter just isn’t doing it, maybe it’s time to clear the actual clutter as well. Do you have a stack of magazines that you’ve been saving “just because”? Is the donation pile by your door actually going to be donated, or has it just become part of the household decoration?
Giving things a good clean or a good decluttering can be just the thing to give you a sense of relief and peace of mind. It simply feels different to sit in your home on the couch in a freshly-cleaned living room: like a weight has been lifted off your shoulders.
Self-care can be anything that helps you take care of yourself.
If spending the day in your pajamas will help lessen your anxiety, then do it. If going on a walk will help, then lace up your tennis shoes. If watching a movie will help ease your mind, then pop yourself some popcorn. Not everyone’s self-care is going to look the same, but what’s important is that it’s best for you.