Loneliness and isolation is a frequent concern for older adults. We are at the developmental stage in life where our spouses, friends, and families are passing away, and we are changing in ways that make it harder to communicate with others. Loneliness, however, is not an absolute certainty; there are ways to reduce loneliness as we grow older. Senior lifestyle news has eight ways to avoid loneliness.
Allow Others into Your Space
This is one of the hardest things for seniors to do, especially when they have been isolated in their homes for long periods of time. Churches, volunteer organizations and even university programs provide seniors with limited periods of company to engage in conversation. What starts out as polite conversation may evolve into meaningful relationships; there are young people out there who would dearly love to have a Grandma.
Housing for Help
If you are a senior who could use some help around the house and has an extra room, there are plenty of people and not just college students who are in search of relatively inexpensive housing and will exchange chores for rent and board.
Seniors can keep in touch with friends and loved ones through various modes of technology. A basic telephone is good, email is good, but Skype can provide the closest thing to face-to-face without being in the same room.
Learn Something New
Senior Lifestyle News has plenty of resources where you can get ideas for new interests. Loneliness is not only reduced by taking up a hobby, though. It is also true that it is never too late to learn. Even Octogenarians are earning university degrees.
You can help yourself out of loneliness and isolation by helping others. What better way to reduce the sadness and depression that comes with feeling isolated and lonely than to engage with another person who is also feeling lonely and isolated. Volunteering to help in other areas such as the food bank or church is also a good way to stay active and stay connected.
Go Out and About
There are two approaches to reducing loneliness that have to do with opening your front door. The first approach is to simply go outside to sit on your front porch or to take a walk around the block. You may be surprised that there are others just like you in your own neighborhood who are willing to strike up a conversation.
The second approach to reducing loneliness is to go out to a senior center or other place that offers a common location where other people in your age range meet up during the day if not for activities, than for conversation. There are also places for seniors to meet other seniors for dancing, travel and yes, even dating. Gardening clubs also provide companionship, exercise and of course, tips on gardening.
Adopt a Pet
There are plenty of studies out there to prove that the quality of life is enhanced and even extended when a pet is adopted.
This may seem obvious, but it is perhaps one of the hardest things for anyone to do, no matter what their age. Be the first one to say hello. Be the first one to ask how another is doing, and truly mean it. When you give your full attention to someone, you will receive full attention in return. You may very well find someone who is lonely just like you.