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Sunset Boulevard: Finding Joy in Aging

Age is more than a number. It is a normal part of life that must be embraced. Just like the sunset, it gives life a certain type of beauty that is deep and inspiring. Aging means you have gone through life experiences that contribute to a person’s wisdom.

Some fear age as they associate it with incapability; they think that you can no longer do enjoyable things when you’re old. When you’re young, you get to explore and go to different places because you still have the strength.

But there’s a certain sense of calm and peace that goes with aging. There is beauty in stillness, just like there’s beauty when quietly watching the sun go down.

Finding joy in aging

At the early stages of our lives, there’s the pressure of constantly trying to prove ourselves. We wonder how our lives will turn out, and we always challenge ourselves to push boundaries and make our lives better.

When you become older, it does not mean that learning has to stop, though. As long as you’re still breathing, there are still avenues to experience the joys of life. Performing physical activities is one way to not only enjoy life but reap its health benefits.

Physical Activities

According to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, inactivity must be avoided in older adults. The university encourages muscle strengthening, aerobic, and balance activities among the age group. In performing activities like these, it is important to consult your doctor to evaluate your fitness level; once your doctor gives you the go signal, you are good to go.

You are in no rush; you are doing physical activities to enjoy and stay healthy. Therefore, start from light to moderate physical exercises. Also, remember to warm up to avoid muscle soreness. Keep this in mind as you do aerobic exercises such as swimming, dancing, walking, or jogging.

The Centers for Disease and Control Prevention encourages physical activities among older adults as well. According to them, participating in these activities is better than sitting all day. Even those with chronic conditions such as heart diseases are recommended to stay active, too; even a minimal amount of physical activities can help tremendously.

As you do physical exercises, you notice that you smile more. This is because your body feels good. Sometimes, exercising involves being part of social activities, too. Social activities contribute to a person’s overall happiness; you are also encouraged to participate in more of these.

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Social Activities

The University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute states that joining in social activities has both expected and potential outcomes. Expected benefits include improved physical and mental health. Mental health is improved because when joining social programs, you reduce a sense of isolation that leads to depression.

There are different enjoyable activities that older adults can do; it’s not just bingo.

Gardening is a fun idea to spend most of your days. You can do it by yourself, but it is much more enjoyable when you do it with others. Make gardening a social activity by inviting friends to do this with you. Dig, plant, and harvest together.

Gardening helps you savor the outdoors and relax your mind. It also feels good to harvest your own food or pick fresh flowers from your garden; it’s beneficial to your mental health.

Go out more. Old age does not mean you have to stay at home all the time. You can still join field trips and excursions. Joining these activities will allow you to explore new places and bond with old or new friends. Discover new museums and nature preserves, and chat with other trip joiners while doing so.

In senior care institutions, there are several social programs that the elderly can participate in. These institutions encourage these activities for the proven physical, mental, and social benefits they provide.

Aging gracefully

Aging gracefully is more than looking good as you grow older. It is about accepting vulnerabilities and facing challenges bravely, regardless of age.

Life does not and must not stop when you get older. In fact, for some, life starts when you gain more wisdom in life. Let’s cite the US Presidency, for example. The average age of every US president at the time of inauguration is 55. US President Joe Biden, for instance, is 78 years old at the time of his inauguration.

Though the age requirement for the presidency is 35 years old and above, the youngest president at the time of inauguration is Theodore Roosevelt at 42. This is because leading a country demands wisdom; life experiences that usually come with age can provide that.

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