February 14, 2019
Aging is inevitable. Most parents of baby boomers have now reached their 70s, 80s and 90s, and with that advanced age, comes added responsibility for their children. These active agers are now faced with additional challenges of caring for ailing parents, loved ones and their own families. Making end-of-life plans, determining where their assets and property will go and who will make healthcare decisions, along with other important factors, come to the forefront – in some cases, overnight – and can happen with just one fall or health crisis.
Schedule yourself for a 10-minute mini workout. Considering all that you have witnessed throughout the decades, now is not the time to slow down. Rather, embrace it as the time to begin weaving the decades of your life together, and re-invigorating all of your senses to live life with purpose by managing your wellness over illness. Incorporating physical activity that you enjoy can make all of the difference and, if possible, find ways to include the person you care for.
Is your family documenting history? We have heard journaling can be a therapeutic practice as well as assist us in bringing true happiness. In addition, there is a huge benefit of straining your brain to recall experiences and past events. Staying sharp begins at birth and continues across a whole lifespan. Senior living and clinical neuropsychologist, and professor of neurological surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, states, “Face-to-face interaction and maintaining as well as building your family network are beneficial for the brain. So shut off the entertainment devices and spend time talking to each other.” Be sure to recognize that the greatest asset you can leave your loved ones is the decades of memories of the life you have shared.
Estate planning is a daunting topic, and most average Americans know they should be planning; however, the majority of people often take the “put off today, what I can do tomorrow” stance since they are not experiencing any physical or mental challenges, thus postponing important discussions with their loved ones. The beauty is you have the ability to instantly share “your stories” at any time, and the art of communication benefits you and your loved ones as you share relevant stories of the past and present; oftentimes sparking conversation of your desires and wishes you may have for the future. This makes a great starter conversation to ensure your loved ones and your own affairs are in order.
Some 40 million Americans give daily help to a parent, grandparent, relative or neighbor, assisting with basic things like dressing, bathing, cooking, medications or transportation. (AARP)
Holiday gatherings are a great way to reach out to those friends and family you seldom talk to where you can jog your memory about long lost relatives and colorful characters in your life. Keep this in mind as you prepare for the next holiday gathering and share precious photos of long ago. Digging photos out of the depths of boxes can serve multiple purposes (i.e., table toppers to decorate the dinner table, photo gifts for those you know or jumpstarting the process of preserving those family memories). Consider attending scrapbooking events, seeking out experts that can passionately write your biography, or better yet, putting your social media to good use by ordering your own chatbooks that help you document your memories – truly giving the most valuable gift you can to future generations.
A special thank you to my loved ones, past and present, that spark my inspiration.
National Program Director of Wellness Services
EnerG® by Aegis Therapies
Aegis Therapies is a nationally recognized leader in contract rehabilitation and wellness services with more than 7,500 therapists and clinicians providing therapy services in over 1,400 facilities across 41 states. Harvey has more than three decades of experience in the Fitness/Wellness/Retirement Living Industry, and champions evidence-based programs across the nation in order to increase overall results using aspects of innovative business development tactics to drive quality, consistency and successful outcomes.
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