Self-isolating and social distancing are important right now, especially for our senior population. Feeling isolated can be hard on anyone – fortunately, there are many ways for us to connect, create a sense of community and live with purpose and fulfillment during this challenging time.
The Edward has prepared a list of our 10 Tips that can help you feel less isolated and more connected to yourself and others. As humans, we are social creatures. Feeling connected to others is good for our health, and helps us understand who we are and what is important to us. During this time, be true to your needs and yourself – don’t be afraid to ask for help, and know that you are not alone.
TIP 1: HARNESS YOUR CREATIVITY
Are you an artist, musician, or do you love to write? This is the perfect time to embrace your creative side, live in the moment and begin something new. Write in a journal, compose a poem, or write a letter to a friend. Sketch something, paint whatever inspires you, or play your instrument of choice. If art or music is not your thing, you can always take up knitting, gardening (soon) or do a puzzle that has been sitting on your shelf for a while. Express your creativity any way you wish – no one is looking over your shoulder or critiquing your work.
TIP 2: EAT FRESH & NUTRITIOUS FOOD
Whenever possible use fresh ingredients to prepare a healthy meal rich with vitamins and antioxidants. Nutritious food will boost your immune system and give you more energy to enjoy the things you love. You can also see what is lurking in your pantry and cupboards – search for healthy items such as barley, lentils and dried fruit. Make a fruit cobbler, some protein packed chili, or a hearty soup that you can enjoy for a few meals. Try to avoid going out for groceries if you can. Ask a friend or family member to pick up a few things for you, or order your food online and have it delivered to your home. If you must visit the store, make sure to avoid the rush during designated opening hours for seniors.
TIP 3: GET A DAILY DOSE OF FITNESS & NATURE
Do some gentle yoga, meditate, stretch or go outside for a walk. Just 20 minutes a day can do the trick to reduce stress, enhance immunity, increase energy and release feel-good hormones. Focus on acquiring a sense of wellness and peace. Breath in the fresh air and listen to nature – spring is here! Plan to stay about 6 feet away from others while out and about. Taking time to rest is okay too, whatever you need to manage stress and feel like your most vibrant self.
TIP 4: LIVEN THINGS UP
Open up some windows, let the sun shine in, put on some lively music and maybe sing a tune or two. Make this part of your daily routine. It can be a great way to start the day. Have your morning coffee or tea and take your time to savour it and enjoy the possibility of a great day ahead.
TIP 5: KEEP A ROUTINE
Many people, isolated at home, are finding it helpful to keep a daily routine. Maybe get up at your usual time, get dressed and start the day with Tip #4 to wake up energized. Prepare and enjoy a nutritious breakfast, then set aside some creative time and go for a walk before lunch. After lunch, you could read for a bit, write in your journal or call a friend or family member for a quick chat. For dinner, take your time preparing a special meal and maybe have a nice glass of wine. Embrace whatever makes you happy and fill your day doing things you enjoy.
TIP 6: EXPLORE BOOKS & FILMS
Do you love to read? Do you enjoy a captivating story? Pick up a favourite novel, or watch a classic film. Looking for something new? Order books or movies online and have them delivered right to your door. Spend time each day reading, or have a weekly movie night. Escape in the magic of a great story.
TIP 7: CONSIDER PAST ACCOMPLISHMENTS & REMINISCE
Reminisce – “to indulge in enjoyable recollection of past events”. Now is a great time to think about your life and everything you have accomplished. Write a biography, or record a few significant stories for future generations. Make that family album you haven’t had time to do. Share family pictures that you come across. Call a friend and tell them about a memorable experience that will make them laugh. As mentioned in Tip #6, everyone loves a good story. Stories can energize people, fire their imagination, and encourage them to consider their place in the world. Take some time to preserve your family history now that you have the spare time.
TIP 8: ESTABLISH A SENSE OF PURPOSE & LOOK TOWARDS THE FUTURE
Don’t just think back, look forward. Stay positive, and envision your future – living an active lifestyle, with the freedom to explore new experiences and try new things. Daydream a little! What does your ideal life look like, how do you want to live after things are back to a new “normal”? This too shall pass, we will adjust and thrive. We will come out stronger and with a greater appreciation for those around us and a sense of community. Plan ahead and look forward to the possibilities.
TIP 9: REACH OUT
If you feel like social isolation is getting to you, just reach out to someone and talk. A welcoming voice on the phone, or seeing a friendly face (FaceTime or Skype) can make a world of difference when you feel the need to connect. Whether it’s a neighbour, friend or family – try to make a connection daily.
TIP 10: REMEMBER THAT YOU ARE NOT IN THIS ALONE
Quite the opposite, we are all in this together. The Edward has written these tips for you because we care and we are here to support you. Please feel free to reach out to us if you just want to chat (about anything at all), or if you need some assistance or advice. We understand that lifestyles and circumstances vary. If we can help you get through this, in a way that is meaningful to you, please let us know.
Connect with us anytime. Feel free learn more about our team so you can put a face to the voice on the phone. We are a small team right now, but we are mighty, and we are here for you.