Maybe you’ve already talked with your senior loved one about spirituality. Or perhaps you are a senior who has had several conversations with your loved ones about your spiritual beliefs. Talking is a great way to connect with each other and forge deeper bonds, but there are also many activities you can do to foster spirituality, as a senior, or in the life of a senior.
Embrace a Sense of Community
- Retirement communities
- Senior centers
- Church (for those who are more religious)
- Organizations focused on helping others
All of these are communities that give seniors the opportunity to interact with others, examine and express their sense of purpose and see a reflection of themselves that will fuel their thoughts and prayers.
If a senior is in a more isolated circumstance, it’s important to bring a community to them. Your local in-home care providers are a good place to start. But, you can also look to friends and relatives or other organizations focused on senior care.
Nurturing a person’s creative side is a fantastic way to open the door to their spiritual life. Creativity comes from a very personal place and can be an outward expression of a person’s innermost dialogue. It’s no surprise that creativity and spirituality often overlap—they occupy similar spaces in a person’s heart and mind.
Start a new activity or do something you’ve never done!
For so many seniors, there are things that they’ve always wanted to do in life that maybe they didn’t have the time for or the opportunity to explore it. Pick up painting or drawing, take a writing workshop, attend dance or music performances –whatever sparks the interest of your senior loved one should give you a clue as to how you can encourage them. And if you’re a senior—express those creative interests and ask for help in finding ways to explore them.
Here’s a little inspiration, to start.
Take Up Yoga or Start a Meditation Practice
Restorative yoga and meditation practices can really help seniors (and people of all ages) examine inner experiences and calm the mind. In fact, there are studies that suggest an increase in life satisfaction with aging, as people shift from the material to more cosmic world.
These practices are known to have an overall positive affect not just for the mind, but also the body.
Reconnect with Wonder
If you’ve ever spent time with small children, you know that they find wonder and joy in things that adults take for granted. So much is new to them that they are constantly stimulated and learning. Connecting seniors with young people can help connect them to wonder again—and reconnect with happy feelings and memories.
Here are a few ideas:
- Take a trip to a park to feed the ducks
- Go to a children’s museum
- Find a merry-go-round
- Visit a community garden or greenhouse
- Read books together
- Do arts and crafts together
- Go to a concert or performance
There is no denying that most of us gather some baggage as we age. Perhaps we are holding onto old hurts, mistakes we’ve made, past abuse or arguments with others. Learning how to let go of these things can bring us greater peace and allow us to feel lighter and a deeper sense of spirituality. It’s as important to forgive ourselves as it is to ask for forgiveness and also forgive. That’s a lot of forgiving!
As a senior, it’s helpful to have someone we trust to talk to and it’s good for them to align with our basic beliefs—but it’s also great if they can provide a different perspective, in a loving way.
As a person with a senior loved one, you can be helpful by listening for clues from your senior about hurts or regrets they are holding onto and finding ways to help them work through them. Talk to them. Or help them find someone to talk to.
If you’ve found other ways to foster spirituality in yours or a senior’s life, please share them with us.
To learn more about our personalized, family-focused Anchorage AK home care services and how we can help you navigate bringing community to your senior loved one, contact us today. We’re always ready to listen, support, and assist.