Never Too Old to Learn

We’ve all heard the expression, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” However, studies show that it’s never too late to learn. The benefits from learning late in life are vital to keeping our minds and bodies healthy for longer and can hold many aging diseases at bay.

Retirement is no longer about cake, balloons, a gold watch, or babysitting the grandkids – baby boomers are not content watching time pass by while relaxing in a rocking chair.

Instead of paying for beds in senior living homes, older adults buy senior housing. Many also focus on physical fitness.

People are starting to realize that they have much more to offer seasoned adults. Seniors are reinventing themselves with new life goals.

They are going back to school, getting degrees, and learning how to navigate in this new technological society.

Many seniors have stopped working only to start something new. Many of them are looking to own their own business and be the boss. They realize just how accurate the saying is, that it’s never too late to learn.

The knowledge gained and the feeling of accomplishment after attaining a new life goal are feelings of satisfaction.

Learning a new skill is educational, but there are some benefits to the ongoing practice of learning that are beneficial to the older generation, which are:

  • Keeping dementia at bay.
  • Maintain a sharp mind.
  • Exercising mental stimulation.
  • Strengthening connections within the brain.
  • Enhancing cognitive function.

All of these are good for seniors, but with all this mental stimulation, let us not forget the body.

LET’S GET PHYSICAL

Keeping the body fit and flexible is just as important as a sharp mind. Residents of assisted living communities have opportunities to take part in physical activities.

Spin classes and jazzercise are replacing the high energy exercise of Jane Fonda and Richard Simmons.

It’s a cliche of the past that says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. Many seniors are doing what the youth of today are doing but just in a more chilled way.

Seniors know that involving yourself in physical activities is the best way to keep the body fit.

Along with a fit body comes healthy choices and decisions of what you put into those bodies. People are educating themselves in the art of healthy eating by taking cooking classes, becoming fitness instructors, and taking on the regimens of Vegans and Vegetarians.

These are practicing lifestyle choices, which is a learning process.

THE LEARNING PROCESS IS A CONTINUOUS PRACTICE

Many seniors are interested in learning new skills that will help keep their memory active. They should choose an activity or a class that will keep them active mentally, physically, or both.

Here are 14 skills, to name a few, that seniors can learn to do by taking a class:

  1. Blogging – an online journal with personal reflections, comments, videos, and photographs.
  2. Cooking classes
  3. Dancing – any style.
  4. Drawing / Painting
  5. Entrepreneurship- at any age, you can start a business.
  6. Flower arranging
  7. Learn to play an instrument.
  8. Learn how to use the latest technologies, smartphones, computers, and other innovative devices
  9. Learn how to navigate through social media, Facebook, Instagram, or any outlet of your choice.
  10. Photography- cellphones cameras have come a long way; some are more powerful than most expensive cameras, this is an easy skill to learn.
  11. Public speaking- Older people have lots of life experiences to share with audiences.
  12. Scrapbooking
  13. Writing- think novels, (bio’s, fiction) screenplays, and poetry.
  14. Start a business.

There are a lot of seasoned learners making a difference in the business world. Age matters, and it just so happens that the older, the better in the business world.

Age is nothing but a number, and this list is for anyone at any age. If you are looking to do something more, something new and different in your life, pick something from the list above.

Seniors experiencing physical barriers that prevent them from various ventures are not limited in today’s business world.

Have an easy screening test, such as a vision and hearing check, to make sure that you can see and hear properly.

Afterward, get started leaving a giant footprint in the assisted living industry.

Do not let anything stop you or stand in your way.

THE GREAT ADVANTAGE OF LEARNING A NEW SKILL

I have already talked about learning new skills that can ultimately help seniors mentally and physically.

If you are a senior over the age of 60, don’t worry, you have some of the other advantages that learning can offer you.

Reinventing yourself as a senior in the business sector requires going to classes. Classes will get you socially involved and help networking come quickly and easily.

If isolation and loneliness is a problem for you, learning and interacting with others fights those feelings.

Learning can be fun! It fosters psychological and emotional well-being. Everyone knows or has heard that exercising releases endorphins which interact with your brain cells causing it to reduce pain and boost pleasure.

Learning something new can fight away the tiredness and impulsiveness due to the lack of interest. When you learn new skills, you become the life-of-the-party and motivating to your family and friends.

Starting a business can also empower you to leave a legacy.

Learning a new skill is like getting a redo in your life.

It does not matter how old you are; stay in the game. Retire and continue living well by learning a new skill.

THE RESIDENTIAL ASSISTED LIVING ACADEMY NATIONAL ASSOCIATION IS IRONING OUT THE WRINKLES

What makes you think that you’re too old to learn new tricks when people over age 50 lead the competition in starting new businesses?

Researchers say that learning additional skills is a great way to “Benjamin Button” your brain. Keep it young, youthful, and sharp.

Find what you want to do, what you like, and join an online group or a class. For example, late to the Ball, by Gerald Marzorati, describes how he learned to play tennis in his 50’s.

Old in Art School, by Nell Painter, tells how she received a bachelor’s and master’s in painting after retiring from Princeton as a history professor.

As far as anyone knows, Ernestine Shepherd is the world’s oldest bodybuilder—but she did not even start to exercise until her 50s. Irving Olson adapted to changing photographic technology over nine decades and was featured in Smithsonian magazine for developing cutting-edge techniques when he was 98 years old.

Those seniors have done amazing things, and not only are they celebrated, but they are celebrating their lives.

The benefit of learning is mentally growing and having independence. Due to technological advances like smartphones or online portals, the changes in our environment cause seniors to become contingent and dependent on asking for help.

Functional independence as a senior is valuable because it leads to happiness in aging and learning new skills.

People can learn multiple skills at the same time. So can seniors in the right environment get them out of their comfort zones, making them fearless and ready for the next chapter of their life?

Click www.RALNA.com to learn everything you need to know about senior housing, quality care, and running a successful business.

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