How Finding Purpose Can Contribute to a Longer Life
Understanding the Link Between Physical and Mental Health
As seniors live longer, the years beyond retirement stretch before us. This presents a new challenge for many seniors: How can we continue to find purpose and meaning in our lives? While our loved ones may give us meaning, purpose is something we must discover for ourselves. And finding it can have a significant impact on our physical health: For example, a 2017 study on the association of purpose in life and physical function found that higher purpose in life was associated with a decreased risk of developing weak grip strength and slower walking speeds.
If you or a loved one is struggling to find purpose after retirement, you are not alone. Here are some ways to start your journey toward fulfilling and purpose-driven aging:
Pursue a lingering creative goal. Do you have regrets about a hobby you never pursued when you were younger? Now is the time to fulfill that creative itch. If you have always wanted to write a novel, now is the time to write it. If you have always wanted to paint, now is the time to buy a set of watercolor paints and paper. Take a course in something completely new.
Change your routine. All of us are guilty of falling into a set routine and not changing it, even if it is no longer bringing us fulfillment. Try to change up your daily schedule and add new activities—start small with something like a phone call to a family member or friend, going for a walk, or visiting your local library for a program or to select a new book.
Find a way to help others. Whether you want to become more active in your grandchildren’s lives—such as helping with homework or a school project—or you want to volunteer your time to local organizations, take the first step today. Giving back and making a difference for someone else can bring a unique sense of purpose to your own life.
How are you finding meaning and purpose as you age? Our senior living options are designed to provide a fulfilling lifestyle to our seniors while accommodating their unique needs. If you would like to learn more, please contact our team to schedule a visit to our Cleveland campus.