Stan Cohen – Senior Wellness

Posts Tagged ‘stress reduction

In the last few years working with the senior population I have run across a huge contingent of people who are their parents caregivers. There is also a tremendous number who see it coming as our boomer population ages and we start taking care of our parents who, by the way, are living longer and expect it of us.

A few of the major issues of caregiving I hear about are burnout, anger, frustration, exhaustion, boredom, of course love and loneliness.  Most have aches and pains from the constant on their feet running here and there, lifting, bending, carrying, cleaning and all the other movements associated with the daily grind of assisting an older person.  The older and more fragile, the more work involved of course.  My own mother in law for example was dead weight, and much heavier for her size then she should have been. Read the rest of this entry »

Sarah Collins
The Little Guide to Big Changes
Wellness Care Today

Visualize a flower becoming a bud, and then slowly growing into the beautiful flower it is meant to become. This is a great metaphor of the journey of life. Just as a flower reaches its peak of beauty at full maturity, the senior years should be a time of full awakening into the person you were born to be. The senior years in a person’s lifespan should acknowledge the depth and breath of life experience. A certain amount of influence goes along with advancing age, in recognition for the distance traveled, for the wisdom accumulated as you continue to walk your unique life path.

People like to say that life is about youth, but I suspect the only ones saying that are the young and advertisers! The elderly segment of society has so much insight and understanding to convey. But here in the U.S. we do not appreciate the senior population the way other cultures do. We tend to try to hide them from view, almost to the point of pretending they don’t exist. We shuffle them off into nursing homes, promising to visit when our busy lives settle down, but they never do. The seniors in this country are pushed aside in favor of youth, of appearances. You see it in families, in the job sector, and even in our government with its mandatory retirement age. It’s as if we’re saying as a collective that a person doesn’t have much if anything to offer after reaching a certain age. As a culture, that kind of insensitivity is astounding and highly detrimental to society.

We should be embracing the wise and wonderful arena of life known as the golden years. Maturity is beautiful in its wisdom, intelligence and self-deprecating sense of humor. The golden years should be full of life’s bounty, the time to enjoy the fruits of one’s labor, be it financially or career oriented, about one’s family or leisure activities, mental and spiritual accomplishments. The elders in society should be respected for their years of experience and most certainly their contributions.

This is the time in life to pause and see how far you’ve come on your journey, to make assessments and corrections – it’s never too late! Everyone, no matter how advanced in age, has something of significance to offer, right up until his or her last breath. Pearls of wisdom dot the landscape of maturity, yet so often are unacknowledged. If you are a senior, why not think about the wealth of experience you have to offer and the ways you could share it? It may be on an individual level, with a group or something bigger. The size or amount of information doesn’t matter; it’s really all in the sharing. Your wisdom can be the inspiration for another. Embrace and share the wisdom you’ve earned!

 My mother, at age 80 is very active and living in a typical Florida retirement community.  On a visit to her she was discussing some physical issues that were due too natural aging.  Her issues were loss of muscle tone, declining energy, overall stiffness and soreness.  We discussed the exercise programs offered in her community.  She mentioned that the exercise equipment was too strenuous, Traditional Tai Chi was to complex for her too understand and the aerobics too difficult. Overall, she was frustrated by the lack of a program that she felt comfortable with to build her balance and flexibility. Read the rest of this entry »

Cinda Hocking, LMSW

How To Find The Best Exercise So You Actually Stick With It? Do What You Enjoy!

Here are some questions you can ask to determine how to find what activities will be best for you:

  • What did I like doing in the past? Can I do it again, or adapt it to my current health situation?
  • What makes me feel good to do? Can I make those activities more or less strenuous to meet my exercise goals?
  • What have I been curious about trying? What activity challenges me and sparks my creativity and interest?
  • What are my barriers to exercise and how can I overcome them? Typical barriers are: not enough time, not enough space, fear of illness/injury, self-consciousness about age, movement limitations, or weight.
  • Will it help me to monitor and track my exercise, progress, and set-backs?
  • Do I like being alone when I exercise, or do I enjoy being with others, or maybe a bit of both? Does my chosen activity reflect this preference?

It is of great importance to have a positive sense of purpose in your activiites – whatever they are: Including regular energizing and stress reducing activity is a big lifestyle goal change for most people, so it may take time to integrate it into your daily routine.

Get up each day and renew your commitment to take care of yourself. When you move with intention in the moment, instead of on auto-pilot, the activity provides more benefits and you will find more emotional and mental value in it than moving just because it is good for you. Get creative and explore what activities give you a sense of positive self-expression. After all, your body is the medium through which you experience your life! Remember, it is possible to improve fitness at any age, and even after a major health change.

In fact, working toward improved fitness is a great way of gaining control over some of the many changes aging and chronic illness makes in your life. It takes commitment to design and maintain a program that works for you, but the results are worth it!

Howard Shareff
Founder – You Call This Yoga

Inactivity is cited as a primary contributor of our body’s diseases. Our society has become more sedentary (less active) than the prior generation due to such factors as more prosperity and time spent in leisure activities involving computers and television. In addition, obesity has become a major health issue for several age groups, especially youths. The resulting decreases in bone and muscle strength, blood circulation of oxygen to the brain and peripheral tissue, and removal of accrued toxins (such as sugar and cholesterol) weaken our ability to fight disease. Read the rest of this entry »


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