Giving Your Time To A Senior Is Very Rewarding For Both Of You
Giving your time to a senior is mutually rewarding. Few actions do more to show how much you care for someone than by spending time with them. Pegasus senior care experts in Mount Washington and elsewhere know that helping others also increases your well-being.
One study reveals that people the world over say that giving makes them feel fulfilled. Giving also leads to happiness. When you help someone, your feel-good hormones, such as oxytocin, flood your system.
It’s The Little Things That Mean The Most
Too often, people believe that giving requires either buying an item or donating big chunks of their time. But it’s really about connecting with another person. One way of doing that is to give them your undivided attention and listen when they speak.
A visit, however brief, eases social isolation and alleviates depression. Engaging in an activity with seniors can help them stay mentally and physically fit. Something as essential as helping them get dressed makes a significant difference in their day.
Offering assistance tells a senior that you care about their well-being. Your concern for their needs means they are valuable to you.
Everyone Has Something To Give
The art of giving is based on the pleasure that comes from connecting with another person. Offering a sincere smile to everyone you meet is one of the easiest ways to connect. Smiling doesn’t depend on age, finances, time, or ability, and it brightens everyone’s day.
Countless other ways of giving are available to you. Your age or infirmities are not limitations for giving or receiving. Consider these suggestions:
- Talent – everyone has a skill that is helpful to another. If you are a good cook, prepare a special meal for someone. If you have good eyesight, read the paper, a magazine, or a book to a vision-impaired senior. Teach a child the alphabet song. Let your imagination find ways that you can use your abilities to enrich the life of another.
- Donate things – you probably have items you no longer use or need. Ask around, and you’ll probably find someone who needs that exact thing. If nothing else, donate unwanted items to a thrift shop.
- Stay in contact – it’s so easy to get busy and forego staying in touch with others. Make the time to call and tell them you care. Send a hand-written note or some little gift that tells them you you’re thinking of them with love.
- Show affection – when you’re with those you care about, offer a hug. If they prefer not to be touched, speak kindly. Express your feelings and tell them that they are important to you. Offer encouragement or reassurance. Help others with something, even as simple as getting an item from a high shelf, without asking.
However you choose to give, make it from the heart and without expectation of something in return.
Volunteering Is Satisfying At Any Age
Volunteering is another way of giving that benefits you and seniors. It forms a connection that makes a difference in someone’s life. Others are helped by your actions, but you reap benefits that include:
- Reduced stress, anxiety, and depression
- Increased self-confidence and feelings of accomplishment
- Lowered blood pressure and blood sugar
- Reduced chronic pain
- Physical activity and mental stimulation
- Enjoyable interactions with others
- New friends
Research confirms that individuals who are disabled or have a chronic disease improve when they volunteer. Don’t let limited transportation or inability to drive stop you if you’re elderly or disabled. Transportation is one of many home care services provided by Pegasus.
The key to being a happy volunteer is to choose something you enjoy. Then contribute the amount of time that feels comfortable for you. Studies indicate that volunteering two to three hours weekly is beneficial for you and the recipient.
The following tips can help you select the volunteer activity that is most satisfying:
- Choose an organization or project about which you are passionate
- Evaluate your skills and the activities that you enjoy – never volunteer for something you dislike doing
- Decide whether you want to invest time and effort into learning something new or stick with what you know best
You’ll find opportunities everywhere in your community. Check out churches, libraries, and schools. You can find additional suggestions at sites such as the following:
- Foster Grandparents
- Retired and Seniors Volunteer Program (RSVP)
- Senior Companions
- Senior Corps
Except for VolunteerMatch, these organizations generally focus on senior volunteers. As a senior, you have more to offer than you might realize. You have a wealth of experience and knowledge that can benefit others.
Pegasus is a licensed Home Care Organization and a Joint Commission Accredited Home Health Care organization. Our services include all levels of senior care in Mount Washington and our other locations. Individuals are treated with dignity and respect for their privacy regardless of their medical needs.
We know first-hand how much it means to seniors when family members or volunteers spend time with them. We also see the difference it makes in the person who gives freely of their time and attention. Giving your time is a win/win practice that rewards everyone.