Engaging with the Mind, Body and Soul
As you work to keep fit and healthy as you age, you probably incorporate good eating habits and regular exercise into your routine. However, wellness is so much more than that; we must also make time for activities promoting a healthy mind, body, and soul.
Mind, body, and soul connect to form an essential part of your identity. They help you understand yourself in your entirety. Focusing on these three facets of personhood helps improve your mental health and wellness, which is critical to your overall health and happiness.
Thankfully, there are endless ways to engage your mind, body, and soul to promote your physical and mental health. This means there are plenty of activities to try out to see what you like best. The trick is to find activities you enjoy that balance all three aspects of mind, body, and soul.
Activities for the Mind
Keeping your mind active as you age can help keep your daily cognitive skills sharp, like thinking, speaking, learning, and remembering things. It’s not uncommon for people to have trouble remembering things as they age. However, engaging your brain and challenging it can help fight against cognitive decline.
Brain games and puzzles are fun and challenging and have been shown to benefit older adults. Activities like these can help you retain your reasoning skills and quick cognition for years to come. Learning a new language is another way to prevent cognitive decline. It’s one of the best mind, body, and soul activities because it encourages you to gain a new skill, have a purpose, and interact with others in new ways.
When it comes to reading, studies show that, in addition to being enjoyable, it can have both physical and mental benefits for older adults. And both reading and writing can lower your stress, which can help you sleep better and feel better throughout the day. Reading and writing can also delay dementia and help with decision-making skills as you age.
Meditation and mindfulness, which typically focus on breathing and being in the present, are two more excellent activities for older adults. Many of these activities focus on the body and mind, helping to lift your mood and improve cognitive function.
Activities for the Body
Working some exercise into your weekly routine helps you maintain a healthy mind, body, and soul. You don’t need to go all out or work up a sweat to reap the benefits of physical activity. Gentle activities, like Tai Chi, are safe for all fitness levels and can be easily adapted to your needs.
Other low-impact activities, like walking and yoga, are great for staying active. Walking gets your heart rate up and helps protect your bones and joints. Yoga can help you improve your strength and balance and can be adapted for all fitness levels. You can do yoga inside or outdoors, alone or in a class. All you have to do is find what is most enjoyable for you so that you stick with it and gain all the benefits yoga can offer.
Water sports, like swimming or water aerobics, are excellent for seniors since they’re easy on your joints while getting your heart pumping. Water’s resistance makes you feel lighter and more balanced, which can reduce the chance of pain or injury. Because of this, older adults with arthritis or sciatica might find water sports especially beneficial.
Resistance training with weights or bands could be just the thing for seniors looking for a challenge. These activities can help you retain muscle mass and strength while reducing stress and raising your heart rate. Multi-joint exercises work different joints and muscles in the same movement or exercise. This helps build up your total body strength without having to do so many different exercises.
Activities for the Soul
So how do you nourish your soul, exactly? Start by getting outside. Spending time in nature lowers stress, lifts your mood, and can reduce your risk of depression. The outdoors offers limitless options for exercise, but you can also try activities like gardening, which can have a social aspect if you decide to participate in a community garden. Engaging in social activities helps fight feelings of loneliness and can offer you a sense of purpose.
You may find this same sense of belonging and purpose in volunteering. By helping others, you can make new friendships with people with similar goals and interests. Volunteering your time and energy to help others can make you feel good about yourself as you learn new skills and become part of a community.
Creative outlets can stimulate your mind, allow you to interact with others, and, most importantly, feed your soul. Art, music, or journaling all let you express yourself in new ways, participate in an activity you enjoy, and bring together your mind, body, and soul.
Taking time to practice gratitude is another small thing you can do to nourish your soul. It helps you focus on all the good in the present moment, no matter how small. Each day, take a few moments to reflect on the things in your life that bring you happiness and how much they mean to you. This habit can help you maintain a positive mindset and boost your mental health.
Many activities designed with seniors in mind help connect the mind, body, and soul. Participating in social events or group outings with friends and peers helps to alleviate feelings of loneliness and isolation. Activities like these let you connect with yourself and others while doing something you like, such as an art class, a trip to a museum, or a meal at a favorite restaurant.
For a little fun, try games or activities specially designed for seniors. Puzzles, card games, or even computer or phone games can stimulate your brain while reducing stress. Like many other hobbies, you can try these things alone or with a group, giving you even more opportunities to socialize.
Activities like physical and occupational therapy can help older adults to live independently longer. They help to develop, maintain, or regain the skills needed to perform everyday activities. Additionally, these therapies can help prevent falls, strengthen vision and memory, and promote independence.
Socializing with family and caregivers can reduce stress, give you a sense of belonging, and make you feel happy and vital. As you age, spending time with loved ones is an important way to connect your mind, body, and soul in a way that brings you joy.
How To Nourish Your Mind, Body, and Soul
Taking care of your overall wellness is essential as you age. Looking at the Blue Zones, scientists have discovered that some regions of the world are home to people who live long, healthy lives free of disease and ailments by following the same basic principles. Eating a healthy diet filled with fresh produce, whole grains, and lean proteins is a good place to start. Good nutrition and a balanced diet help you get the vitamins and minerals your body needs to stay healthy.
Next, make sure you get enough rest. Older adults need seven to nine hours of sleep a night but sometimes struggle to fall or stay asleep. Taking a nap when needed can help you feel recharged and refreshed for the rest of the day.
Socializing and connecting with family and friends can do so much for all aspects of your health, as can taking time to find ways to de-stress and do things you love. Lower levels of stress can help slow down the effects of aging, boost your mood, and improve your mental and physical health. Spending time with loved ones doing things you enjoy feeds into this, fulfilling your soul and giving you a sense of well-being.
Explore Healthy Aging at SRG Senior Living
SRG Senior Living knows how important it is to engage the mind, body, and soul as you age, so our 19 luxury senior living communities aim to do just that. Our communities help seniors practice healthy aging by promoting all aspects of wellness.
Reach out to us today to discover all of the benefits SRG Senior Living offers, starting with our holistic approach to wellness!