Read these 19 Independent Senior Living Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Senior tips and hundreds of other topics.
If you are an independent living senior, you still need to take precautions. When we go for an outing, no matter how long, be sure to turn on a light *inside and out*; we never know when our return may be delayed. Remember to always have our door key ready before approaching the door.
'Keep your chin up' is not just a saying for senior independent living; this can help in our everyday relaxing time. Sit up straight, lean the head back as far as is comfortable. Uh, oh...didja hear those creaks? Feel the 'pull' in the front neck muscle? Then lean the head to one side..hold..then the other side...hold. Continue doing this simple exercise couple times a day, EVERY day. Ease up if soreness develops.
Well, I found the flab on my upper arms this morning! I could tell I've been lax on some good and simple exercise. Do you have that, too? Let's get rid of it! Exercise is an important part of senior independent living. 1) Hold your arms out straight, even with your shoulders, fingers pointing out, palms down. Now start making circles with your arms, rotating towards the front (finger tips should make about an 8 in. diameter circle). Make 20 circles. Relax 2) Repeat the above, except this time the palms are up and you will rotate towards the back. Do the above exercising twice; 20 circles, palms down; 20 circles, palms up. After 5 days, increase the circle diameter to 12-14 in. for 5 days; then increase to 18 inches for 5 days. Repeat the whole process. Note: If you have shoulder pains when increasing the circle, rotate at a slower movement, and to your most comfortable circle diameter. Do not strain your shoulder joints unnecessarily.
For those with arthritis, clothes with buttons can be a challenge to independent senior living. One suggestion would be to convert your present clothes to velcro closure by: remove all buttons and sew onto the button-hole opening (closing button-hole); sew a strip of velcro (purchased from craft or cloth stores) to area where buttons were removed and also to area on backside of the button-hole strip. Some velcro has 'sticky' backside that can be ironed onto cloth, but sewing is more permanent. If you cannot sew, request assistance from family, friends, or professional seamstress.
A backyard fence is a must, not just for privacy, but also for security. For nominal security for the independent living senior, the fence should be at least 8 ft. tall. If you have a driveway to the back garage, install a secure chain-link gate across entry with a padlock. If you have a wooden gate or two, add a padlock to each one. Just don't lose the key(s)
Whether it be gardening, exercising, running errands...whatever...part of independent living is knowing what our 'limit' is without adding stress, aches and pains. At the beginning of each week, make a list of things we want to accomplish for that week, then break down to no more than one 'hard' task per day. Write down what you want to do in a daily-planner or your convenient wall calendar. If you 'miss' a task, add it to next week's list. We'll find ourselves more flexible and not as rushed (or achy!)
Independent living means watching out for scams. Never respond to phone solicitations for products or winning sweepstakes. And NEVER give out ANY personal information to ANYONE who contacts you by telephone. Tell them you're not interested and hang up the phone.
A simple and easy way for independent living seniors to tone the leg muscles is: Lie flat on your back, legs extened straight up with toes pointed(easy does this when beginning, a slight bend if necessary); try to keep your hips, knees and ankles in a straight line. With your toes always pointed, bend first your right knee, and bring your foot as close to your buttock as possible; raise leg to beginning position, then repeat with the left leg (note, the opposite leg should be kept straight in the air, muscle tight). Repeat with both legs four times, then flex the feet and repeat exercies four more times, each leg. Bring legs down and relax before standing. These exercises can be done on a continuing basis for firming and toning your legs.
Independent living tip: Before going shopping for clothes, go to our closets and review the color/type of blouse/shirt, slacks/skirts, sweaters, etc. When buying something new, we can better coordinate with what we have, and we'll know what not to 'duplicate'. Especially when we spot that special sale!
Where I live there are "City" sponsored locations for Seniors living in your home; call your City Hall - Information. Check with many of the churches in your area, they also offer this type of care/activity for independent living seniors. Also check with your doctor or hospital administration. Many of these locations offer rides to and from their facilities. If no locations are available, ask both City and Churches if there could be something begun for this need. There may be some locations in towns very close to you.
I can't believe I'm talking about this, but WHY NOT! Have you noticed your stomach getting bigger? Even if you are an independent living senior, are you less sexually active now? Think about this: there really is a lot of stomach muscles used when we are sexually active, so it stands to reason that lessening this activity would weaken our stomach muscles! Soooo, IF you are no longer sexually active, get on with exercise to strengthen our stomach muscles. Of course, a good exercise would be sit-ups, but careful with not straining your back; hook your feet under a chair or dresser, or bend your knees up, when doing sit ups. An easier exercise would be when sitting: suck-in your tummy as tight as you can, hold to count of ten, relax then repeat ten times (to start). Do this two or three times a day, every day (but lessen up if you feel sciatica back pain). As you do this, mentally pull up the bladder. If you keep this exercise going daily, you'll be strengthening both the stomach AND bladder. DON"T LET UP! It takes weeks to get those muscles in better shape!
Independent living seniors need to see to their security. If it is necessary to put your name on a mail box or in the phone directory (wherever), just use last name and INITIAL ONLY of your first name. 'Tho my husband has been deceased for 4 years, I continue to use HIS and my name in phone book. NEVER add just Mrs. or Mr.
Summer-heat is upon us NOW! Independent living seniors have become accustomed to our indoor air-conditioning, BUT we need our exercise. If you are not a 6:00 a.m. riser, a time when the temperature is coolest and best for outdoor walking, think 'shoping malls'. Many Seniors utilize these malls for their walking exercise; malls are kept nice-and-cool and most have benches for resting a bit. Since malls are open long hours and usually 7 days a week, you have plenty of time to utilize these facilities. Take advantage of them when you can, even during the heat of the summer days.
For some, the RV represents the ultimate in senior independent living. For those who already live/travel/work in their RVs , "workamping" is a familiar term: A cross between working and camping. This website will explain all and provide you with a wealth of information about the workamp lifestyle. http://www.workamper.com
If you have dreamed of retiring to the road for a life of independent senior living in your RV, this is the site for you. It's all about the RV life plus earning money as you travel. Coleen Sykora is the brain behind the site and she has become the diva of RVing. http://www.workersonwheels.com
Whether you are looking for living options for yourself or your loved ones, NewLifeStyles.com is the place to start. We like the "Care Interpreter" tool especially. It helps you find out the type of housing and care best suited to your needs.