Elderly people are particularly vulnerable to experiencing loneliness and social isolation due to loss of confidence, mobility, income or close friends and family. Staying active and engaged within your local community can be extremely beneficial for your overall health, wellbeing, quality of life and overall happiness.
It is important for all of us to stay active and socialise, but even more so as we get older. Engaging in social activities can help you to gain confidence, combat loneliness, learn new skills, stay fit and healthy, meet new people and most of all – have fun! If you’re stuck trying to think of ideas how you can get yourself back out there socialising, we have put together a list of social activities which we think that you will enjoy:
Exercising – such as joining a walking, cycling or jogging group, or attending group classes at your local leisure centre. Remember, exercise increases your immune system and boosts happiness!
Attending lunch clubs and coffee mornings at local cafes, day centres and restaurants. You will meet a lot of new people at these events, and be able to make some new friends within your local area!
Joining your local gym – not only will this keep you fit and healthy, but you will also be able to meet a lot of like minded people. You can either go to the gym alone, with a friend or family member, or join in with the group exercise classes. Yoga is a personal favourite of ours!
Find a gardening group which you can join, such as at a community garden or allotment within your local area. Not only will you make new friends, you will also be doing a whole lot of good for the environment!
Attending book clubs at your local library or community centre is a great way to socialise. Book clubs usually meet up once every week or fortnight, and discuss books that they’ve all read and talk about their options, likes and dislikes. Reading books is a great way to keep your mind active and find a new passionate for different subjects.
Volunteering at a local church or faith centre, charity shop or day centre. You can also volunteer within your local community such as by baking for an event or fate, knitting clothes for a charity shop or joining a befriending service.
Learning new skills – such as computing, languages, baking, knitting, cooking, swimming or arts and crafts. Learning new things is always great for your confidence, and you never you know – you may have an undiscovered talent!
You can find out information about the social activities and events which are available within your local area through libraries, community or health centres, council offices, and places of worship. You can also have a look online, as well as speaking to your neighbours, friends and family about any activities or hobbies which may be of interest to you.
If you feel worried or anxious about socialising, it may be useful to ask a family member or friend to join in with you. Remember, you are never too old to have fun!