Science continues to confirm the fact that physical and intellectual exercise are both necessary to pursue good physical and mental health. In fact, the old adage, “use it or lose it,” holds quite a bit of truth in this regard. Perhaps understanding this reality is never more important than during retirement when kicking back and relaxing after years of working hard. The good news is that physical and intellectual exercise can be enjoyable. In fact, finding the right activities can make us forget we are exercising at all!
Here are five ways to pursue lifelong learning in independent living.
1. Find topics or subjects you want to learn
Have you ever thought about learning another language? Have you ever considered picking up a musical instrument or learning to cook new and exciting foods? It’s never too late to try something new. In fact, now is the best timeto explore a new hobby!
The right active-lifestyle retirement community will offer social and educational programs that span a variety of interests and opportunities so you can engage your mind and body in a healthy way. If you try something new and decide you don’t enjoy it, you can move on to something else! The best part of retirement is that you have the time to learn and explore whatever your heart desires.
2. Make new friends
The older we get, the more we understand that our friends don’t need to be carbon copies of us. In fact, we can benefit from getting to know people who have lived very different lifestyles than our own.
One of the best places to meet and make new, great friends is at a retirement community. With restaurant-style dining, a fully-packed entertainment calendar, and a public game room, the possibilities are endless!
Don’t hesitate to strike up conversations that lead to long-lasting friendships. The ideal independent living community will offer and encourage opportunities to strengthen your existing social connections and develop new ones to help you stay happy and healthy. Building interpersonal relationships can be a unique and enjoyable version of lifelong learning.
3. Pursue purpose and meaning
Now that you are retired, you finally have the time to invest in areas that matter to you. Is there something you have always wanted to do in order to invest in or give back to your community? Have you ever considered writing or teaching? Now is the time to take that next step. Not only will you benefit the people around you, but you will benefit your own health with a creative form of lifelong learning.
Many retirement communities encourage faith-based involvement, volunteerism and service opportunities that allow you to fill your life with purpose. Now more than ever, retirement is the right time to find a place a worship or an area of service where you can give back and find camaraderie in community.
4. Take advantage of community amenities
It’s no secret that physical activity and good nutrition enable us to stay strong and flexible, while limiting illness and disability. So, what unique amenities or services does your independent living community have that you can explore? Does your community offer fitness and wellness programs? What about exercise classes? Do you have access to an art studio or a billiards room? Take advantage of these or other opportunities and discover lifelong learning in a fun and social environment.
5. Engage in member programs
Independent living communities offer programs to encourage the pursuit of lifelong learning, but even if they don’t, you can find ways to enroll or engage in member programs. Look for educational opportunities, either in your community or at a local college or university, where you can pursue a subject you are curious about., Enjoy art and music whenever and wherever you can. Go on adventures and take local trips to interesting areas and events. Try new food. Visit new places. If someone invites you on an excursion, agree to go!
Bottom line: you’ll never regret challenging yourself and trying new things. You may not love everything you try, but you’ll love the fact that you tried, and you’ll have a lifetime of good memories to show for it!
Here at Verena at the Glen, we believe in the pursuit of lifelong learning in independent living. In fact, we have no shortage of activities, programs and ways to connect with others. We believe so strongly in pursuing lifelong learning that we’ve included it in our wellness philosophy, which guides the choices we’ve made while building a community we can be proud of from the ground up.
We are a sophisticated, active-lifestyle retirement community in Glen Allen, surrounded by breathtaking Virginia landscape, and a short drive from Richmond. Our first-class amenities and upscale senior apartments ensure you’ll feel right at home. We would love to show you around and introduce you to the place we are lucky to call home. Contact us to schedule a tour.