Your retirement is probably the most important time of your life. It’s a chance for you to look back on your life, and see what’s really made you who you are today. With that in mind, you suddenly find yourself with a lot of extra time, and now you need activities to fill up the recently freed up schedule. Everyone is unique, and more than likely you already have a bunch of hobbies you want to get back into, but say you’re feeling more adventurous and want to try something new. If that’s the case, continue reading, and you might just find your next big hobby.
Gardening for Retirees
Gardening is a chance to express yourself creatively while doing carefree scientific experiments from your own home; it engages both of your brain’s hemispheres, and is a wonderful source of low-intensity, low-impact exercise. Because of how much focus and care is required to garden you may find yourself going into a relaxed, almost meditative state. It also exercises all of your motor skills, meaning it’ll be an excellent way to prevent, and perhaps even recover from some degenerative diseases. Along with that, you can yield some amazing creations, or even make some fresh produce for yourself or others.
If you aren’t quite capable of going outside and getting down in the dirt then you can try windowsill gardening. It’s less strenuous than traditional gardening, and is a great way to liven up your home. It can come in many forms, from hanging potted plants, to trimming bonsai trees, or even just tradition clay pots. Gardening is an open and easily adaptable hobby.
Scrapbooking in Retirement
Scrapbooking began in the late 1700’s in Great Britain, and has been carried on as a fun tradition where one can capture the memories and precious moments of their lives and others in a little picture book. It the art of preservation, arranging and presenting. A big bonus is that there’s no true or right way to scrapbook. It’s a means by which you can let our your own creativity. It allows you to visit your memories and put your own personal spin on them for everyone to see. It can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be, and the only thing that matters is how you want to express that story. Below are some tips to help you start:
- Pick a theme: Anything can be a theme if you want it to be. You could make one for your pets, or an anniversary, or about a newborn baby.
- Use other media: It doesn’t need to be just pictures. You can always incorporate letters, drawings, postcards, awards, anything! Your imagination is the only limitation.
- Involve your family and friends: Yes it’s your story, but they had a part in it too! Scrapbooking is an excellent opportunity to socialize with those who are close to you.
How Yoga can help Retirees
Yoga is a physical and spiritual practice stemming from Hinduism. It’s purpose is to unify your body and mind together. Many exercise programs utilize at least some form of yoga, and at quick glance it can seem very intimidating. However, there are classes that specialize in stretching and relaxing for seniors. Really, helping you become calm and relaxed is one of the main goals of yoga. Some classes have even integrated chairs into yoga routines, allowing for those with more limited motor functions to participate.
There are also the obvious physical benefits as well. Yoga makes you more flexible, which is helpful for those who suffer from arthritis and other degenerative disorders. If you’ve had anything similar to valve or heart surgery, or simply need to reduce the following, then you’ll find relief in how yoga reduces both your stress and your blood pressure. Along with it being excellent for your overall health, it’s a fantastic way to bond with others.
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The fun of Trivia Nights
Trivia night may not sound all that exciting at first, as it’s often the butt of a joke in many movies, but it’s been growing in popularity in bars throughout the nation. Our brains need stimulation, no matter how old we may be. A constantly stimulated mind is key to maintaining healthy brain function in the later years, and trivia is always a good way to challenge yourself and keep your mind sharp. Due to the lack of current or commonly spoken of topics, trivia is able to challenge your mind and force it to work in ways many other activities don’t. You can also get a little creative in how you perform and compete on trivia nights. For those who set up trivia night you’ll likely also have your own type of fun, as you’ll be designing the theme and questions. See if you can get others involved as well!
Why Senior Citizens Should do Traditional Art
This is a great time to pick up an art form, and there is no shortage of mediums to choose from. Watercolor, oil, pastel, ink, charcoal, acrylic, graphite, and even a mixture of any of these are all easy to access. You’ll be keeping your mind stimulated with art as well, though in a more abstract way. Abstract thought teaches the brain to engage familiar subjects with new perspectives or explore entirely new concepts altogether.
If you’re unfamiliar with traditional arts then you can always take some classes. There is a plethora of courses offered everywhere, including private tutoring or college courses. You could even go online for video tutorials that break down technique at a pace that fits you, most of these tutorials are free as well, so bonus for your wallet!
How Photography Helps Retirees
Photography is another art hobby that you can pick up, but unlike other art forms, photography serves as not only a creative outlet, but it helps document things as you see them. It’s a great source of stress relief, and it encourages you to get up and out. Thanks to the portability of cameras you can bring it along your next downtown trip or group hike! It also helps improve memory, since it literally involves documenting what you see.
Photography can be utilized in many manys. It’s a great way to keep family members up to date with your adventures, and it can help you be more creative with other hobbies you may be taking up, such as scrapbooking or mixed media art projects. Your pictures make for a great story to tell, so if all else fails then you can use them to engage with others and have fun conversations.
Should Senior Citizens do Volunteer Work?
Someday you may find yourself thinking that you have a higher calling you’ll need to answer to, and when that happens you can look to the many volunteering options available to make your positive impact. Many organizations are happy to have anyone and everyone come to their aid. Here’s a few options you can consider:
- Humane Society/ASPCA: Animal shelters are often underfunded, so they are often limited in resources, and they can only hire on so many staff members. As a volunteer, you can help out in many ways, including socializing with the animals.
- Childrens Hospitals: With so much going on, these places often need extra help to monitor playrooms, help tutor kids, and simply to have people visit with them, play games with them, and tell stories to them.
- Veteran Affairs Volunteer Service (VAVS): This program supports veterans that may be injured from combat, or even provide care to homeless veterans trying to readjust and rebuild.
There are countless other organizations that accept retired volunteers for aid. It’s simply a matter of locating one that fits well with you.
Why Should Senior Citizens take Cooking Classes?
Cooking is an excellent and rewarding art. Most everyone has watched the Food Network only to have their stomachs growl at the sight of the intoxicatingly exotic dishes and sweet, feel-good ones that remind us of the days our mothers cooked our meals, so why not get involved and take some cooking classes?
Cooking has more benefits then just that. It requires focus and precision, which is healthy for your brain development. Depending on what you make it may even allow you to live a healthier lifestyle. If you’d like to get others involved in more than just eating then you can bring them into the kitchen with you, after all cooking is for people of most any age.
Doing Creative Writing After Retirement
The 21st century is a great time to be a writer. There are numerous tools available to help you get the words flowing onto the page. If you’re looking for a community then you can find it online, where many forums provide help between writers, including writing prompts and exercises. It’s a great way to practice self-discipline as well as let your creative side out.
Writing can be done in almost any place, and that’s one of the greatest things about it. You can use a computer, write in a journal you keep at your bedside, or even bring a notebook with you when you travel. You have many stories to tell, so why not start putting them down on paper? Words have an interesting tendency to bring out the more interesting parts of what’s going on upstairs, and they are uniquely yours to share.
How Water Activities help After Retirement
Swimming is very beneficial to pretty much everyone, as the environment involves low intensity and low impact exercise that works all of the muscles in your body. Due to the gentleness of the workout you’ll find your muscle tissue becoming more flexible and elastic, all while you strengthen and tone up your body.
Even if you aren’t interested in swimming, here is a list of possible water aerobics classes for you to consider instead:
- Water Jogging: You’ll find your blood flowing and your heart pumping in this low-impact exercise. It can be as simple as jogging from one end of the pool to the other, just with a little water resistance.
- Flutter Kicking: This is simply kicking your way from one end of the pool to the other, and can be done with or without a kickboard.
- Standing Push-ups: Just like a traditional push-up you’ll place your hands in front of you, a little wider than shoulder width apart, and bend into it, though in this case you’re standing at the edge of the pool, with your hands on the gutter or edge.
- Water Weight Training: You won’t need to worry about harming yourself if you use foam weights while in the water.
Should You join a Dance Class After Retirement?
It might be time you learned how to cut a rug. Being a mix between art and exercise, you’ll find yourself completely engaged in it. Of course, it has may benefits to it.
It’s able to reduce insomnia, stress, anxiety, and depression. Studies have shown that seniors who did take the classes had less negative emotional responses, and an increase in their stamina and productivity. Allowing your doctor approves it, then anyone with serious problems like asthma, heart disease, arthritis, and parkinson’s disease may also benefit, as scientists also saw a decrease in symptoms from these subjects.
Find Your Calling in Retirement
Retirement is the beginning of true living. It’s a time for you to reflect on your life, on who you were, who you are now, and what makes you happy. What we’ve mentioned in this article are merely ideas for you to start with, but if you find something else that excites you and engages you then by all means, go for it! Take time to discover what really makes you happy, and then mold it to match who you are.