Coping is the ability to adapt to the changes in medical, biological, or psychological stressors, or to the available resources. Coping with change is hard at any age, especially as you get older. As you age, you get to experience several major life changes, including retirement, loss of loved ones, physical and mental changes, and loss of independence. However, it is important to understand that aging is natural and unavoidable.
Balancing your sense of loss by making a few changes in your life can help you stay healthy and live longer. This article will explore ways to cope with age-related changes.
Tips For Healthy Aging
Changes that come with aging can be overwhelming to people who are resistant to changes. Nevertheless, there are several strategies that you can utilize to age happy and healthy.
🔹 Acknowledge The Changes
Accepting your age is the first thing you have to do while coping with aging. Accepting aging is hard when it changes things that were once routine to you and it is natural to feel the losses you experience. Always remember change is a part of life that occurs to everyone of all ages.
Being in denial can only complicate things for you and the people around you. You need not force things on yourself to look or feel younger like forcing yourself to dress in clothes meant for teens or getting very young friends.
Instead, try following a natural and comfortable lifestyle and stop forcing things on yourself just to look younger. Make choices that would make you happy and stay healthy by embracing your age.
Try finding ways to express your feelings and allow yourself some time to heal. You can do it by either writing a journal or expressing it through music or art. After processing the feelings try reframing the situation positively to make the changes more manageable. For instance, if you are retiring, consider that as a chance to spend more time with your loved ones.
🔹 Connect With Others
As you age you may lose your social circle which may push you to loneliness. For example, when you retire, you may not be able to see your coworkers or chat with them daily like you used to.
Rather than becoming isolated, it is better to make an effort to maintain connections with friends, family, and neighbors. Thus, you can still have a great social circle. As we are living in the age of technology, you can catch up with your old friends through the Internet.
🔹 Stay Physically Healthy
Even though there are a few diseases and health conditions that become more common in old age, it doesn’t necessarily mean you will be unhealthy or spend the rest of your life in a wheelchair. You are expected to have lower bone strength, heart rates, reflexes, and metabolism as you age. However, we can implement more healthy eating and exercise habits to stay out of chronic diseases and stay healthy.
Eating healthy includes incorporating an adequate amount of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals in your diet. Be mindful that overeating can lead to digestive illnesses and other problems in the aged. It is wise to consult a doctor to know about what food and how much is right for your lifestyle.
Physical activities can increase mobility, help prevent injuries, and reduce risks of age-related diseases. Endurance exercises, strength exercises, balance exercises, flexibility exercises, and stretching are mostly recommended as you get older. Experts recommend aiming for at least 2.5 hours of exercise per week to maintain physical health as you age.
🔹 Maintain Cognitive And Mental Health
Just like physical health, we may notice a few changes in cognitive and mental health as we age. You may experience difficulties in remembering things in the past as you get older. However, we can train and learn new skills to keep our memory sharp. But it is recommended to start it early to get better results. Games and puzzles can be really helpful in maintaining your cognitive health.
You can promote cognitive and mental health by improving your physical health, being social, and quitting substance use. Practicing yoga or meditation can help you relieve stress and improve your mental health.
As aging is inevitable, it is important to build your resilience and find healthy ways to cope with age-related changes. Try practicing the above-mentioned tips to cope with these transitions. These tips can help you improve the meaning of your life and keep your composure even when things go south.