Making friends and staying social can be difficult, especially when you aren’t getting out and about as much as you were when you were younger. Isolation isn’t healthy for anyone, so you should make an effort to keep your friends close and create more social connections as you age. Brightwater Senior Living has compiled a list of some activities for seniors to help you stay social, make friends, and add fun to your days.
Take Up Social Video Gaming
Yes, it might sound odd, but actually, video games have become quite popular with adults over the age of 55 in recent years, and many encourage social interaction. Simple games like 1-2-Switch and Wii Sports are great ways to get in some low-intensity exercise and have a blast with friends and younger family members. Many senior living communities have video game consoles on hand, and if you’re willing to spend the money, you can purchase your own Wii or Switch and invite your neighbors over for a fun time.
Organize Group Walks
Walking is an excellent way to stay healthy and active, and it’s also something that several people can easily do together. It’s also safer to walk in groups, especially if one of you needs to take a break. Get in touch with your friends and set up a time to take a walk together. You can even invite friends’ friends along and switch off walking partners when your usual ones can’t make it.
All kinds of places need volunteers – your local soup kitchen, schools, or religious organizations, to name a few. Some low-intensity volunteer activities include handing out food or water at nonprofit events, greeting people at food pantries, or helping kids cross the street at schools. Many people start volunteering to meet other volunteers, so you’re sure to find like-minded acquaintances.
Spend Time at Your Community Center, Library, or Senior Living Common Room
Even if you’re just going somewhere to sit down and read a book, you might eventually develop a camaraderie with other older adults doing the same thing. It’s also good for your mental health to be in a social setting surrounded by people instead of cooped up in your room. If you live in a senior living community, this might be even easier – simply spend time in the dining room or common room and you’re sure to find someone else looking for a friend.
We hope that these suggestions gave you a good starting point for ways to be social and make friends as a senior. For more information about socialization, health, and relationships for seniors, check out Brightwater’s blog.