Five ways for seniors to find joy this holiday season

The holidays can be a lonely time for many people, especially if you don’t have family nearby. One of Vibrante’s goals is to keep our members connected to the community, which is especially important at holiday time. While families and friends may be spread across the country, there are still ways to find joy this time of year. Here’s a list to get you started.

  • Take extra care of yourself. This becomes especially important when stress levels tend to rise. If you’re not sure where to start, consider taking a meditation class, which can teach you how to relax both physically and emotionally. Your activity level doesn’t matter, anyone can participate.
     
  • Assess your living situation. It may seem like a big step, but if you are feeling isolated during the holiday season, maybe it’s time to consider a new living arrangement. Shared living options, such as Vibrante, may be your best alternative to living alone. Vibrante provides fellowship that evolves from living with carefully chosen, like-minded people.
     
  • Organize outings with friends. Others may be feeling a little alone at the holidays, too. Gather friends and neighbors for a fun excursion. The Minnesota Orchestra offers senior ticket deals for groups. Their Sunday matinee series and Thursday morning coffee concerts offer senior groups of 10 or more $29 tickets for a variety of shows. Their facilities are fully accessible with amenities including bus parking, accessible seating and assistive listening devices.
     
  • Lift your mood by helping others. Lots of charities are desperate for volunteers during the holiday season. Give some time to others by volunteering at a local food bank or neighborhood community center. It’s a great way to meet new people and gain perspective on your own blessings.
     
  • Make some new traditions. If you are feeling the absence of family, fun and friendship, realize it is what it is and be kind to yourself. Read a funny book, enjoy a crossword puzzle or do a craft. Call family and friends who are far away. Pamper yourself with a trip to the salon or buy yourself a little gift that will bring you joy.

It can be hard to get through the holidays when you are feeling lonely, but taking time for yourself and giving to others can really help.

Try these resources for other ideas on making the holidays bright.

http://www.healthinaging.org/files/documents/tipsheets/holiday_blues2011.pdf

http://www.oprah.com/spirit/10-ways-to-beat-the-holiday-blues

http://www.cnn.com/2014/12/19/health/surviving-holiday-blues/index.html

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-thomas-sunnarborg/20-tips-to-beat-the-holid_b_13153654.html