Tips for Seniors for Finding Joy in the Winter MonthsJanuary 11, 2024
Tips for Seniors for Finding Joy in the Winter Months
When January hits, the reality of winter finally sets in. The days are long, dark, and cold, and with that can come an unfortunate dip in mood. Winter blues, or the more serious counterpart, seasonal affective disorder (SAD), is thought to occur due to the limited daylight hours. Daylight impacts the production of the sleep hormone, melatonin, which can cause lethargy and symptoms of depression in higher doses.
If you’ve been feeling changes in your mood since the beginning of the season, you’re not alone. Try these tips for seniors for finding joy in the winter months to overcome these feelings.
Don’t stay inside
Freezing temperatures may not encourage you to bundle up and get outside, but doing so benefits your mental health. Breathing in the fresh air increases your vitamin D levels, boosts your immune system, improves your mood, and even improves your memory. Dress in warm layers, grab a warm drink, and get going.
Before you step outside, make sure you are wearing shoes with good traction. This will help you stay safe and avoid falls as you encounter slippery ice.
Schedule activities throughout your week
Especially following the holiday season, it can feel like everything comes to a halt during the winter. During this low period of planned community activities, make regular plans. Join a book club, start a knitting circle, go out for lunch with loved ones, or learn a new language. Whatever your activities of choice are, partaking in something you enjoy on a regular basis will do wonders for your mood.
It’s even better if your regularly scheduled plans involve your friends and family. In addition to doing what you love, spending time with the people you love gives you the satisfaction of quality time which is so beneficial to seniors. It doesn’t matter if you talk about what ails you or simply enjoy laughter together.
Find beauty in winter
Among the longer nights and gray weather, there is still so much for older adults to enjoy that can be forgotten. Freshly fallen snow, comfortable yet stylish clothes, hot chocolate, and a crackling fireplace are all things we can only enjoy this time of year. Celebrate these aspects. Making a point to note these special factors of the season is a great way to make your life a little brighter.
Incorporate hygge into your life
“Hygge” (pronounced “hooga”) is a Danish practice that encourages one to enjoy the simple things in life. This is especially pertinent during the winter months when Denmark only sees 17 hours of sunlight. The word refers to “a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment and wellbeing.” To practice hygge, create a cozy environment that you want to come home to time and time again. Have rituals that you look forward to every day, such as lighting a candle and reading with a hot drink, or putting on a movie and painting.
Practicing mindfulness is also a crucial step of hygge. Being present in the current moment allows you to be more in tune with your emotions and the simple pleasures in life.
Care at home in the winter
As we explore the many ways seniors can find joy during the winter months, it’s essential to remember that assistance is available to ensure these moments are as comfortable and safe as possible. Home Care Powered by AUAF can provide invaluable support to seniors looking to make the most of the season. Whether it’s assistance with daily tasks, companionship, or running errands, our home care professionals are dedicated to enhancing your quality of life.
Learn more about the services we provide Chicago seniors by calling (773) 274-9262.
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