Time well spent

Whilst we should take the pressure off ourselves to be productive while we are following government guidance to stay at home, some of us feel happier and more content when we’re keeping our body and mind active.

REMEMBER: Although current restrictions are limiting social interaction face to face with family and friends, you can still talk to loved ones on the phone, via video call or by writing letters to one and other. Read our tips on video calling. Whatever your age, it's good to talk and let loved ones know you're there to support them, as they are to support you.

If you are now finding yourself bored, frustrated, or down right fed up, with the same old daily routine and activities at home... try something new. During the extra time spent at home, how about learning a new skill, picking up a new hobby or just using the time to do something that you’ve been putting off for ages? It's easy to feel lethargic at home, but making sure you spend some time outside each day and partake in a little exercise will help. And keeping your brain active throughout the day plays a vital role in wellbeing.

Here's our collection of favourite activities for senior living in 2020:

Ten activities recommended for senior living:

Organise your photos

83% of us have a camera phone and 90% of all photos snapped are on our phones. But how many of them get printed? Very few indeed. Do you have photos on your computer, tablet or phone you would like to print? Or perhaps you have a stack of old photos you have been meaning to sort. Get online and order your prints, frames, and albums or share photos with loved ones.

Write a novel or start a blog

Writing can be incredibly therapeutic and can help to pass the time. It's also a beautiful way to ensure your stories and experiences will always be remembered by future generations. Write whatever you like, whenever you like. Write just for yourself or share with loved ones or even strangers. Your words could be someone else's escapism.

Have a clear out

Use this time to organise your home. One of the top reasons people choose to downsize in retirement is the accumulation of 'stuff'. Check expiration dates on the goods at the back of kitchen cupboards, clear out that junk drawer you’ve been avoiding, declutter your wardrobe or colour coordinate your spice rack. Tidy home, tidy mind.

A job we all dread starting, but one that is well worth the time. As well as clearing out unneccesary clutter, who doesn't love a trip down memory lane.

Learn a new language

Picking up another language is not easy and takes time but it can be a very rewarding hobby and a great way to keep your mind active. There are a number of interactive online courses available which can make learning more fun and can test your progress. If you already have travel plans, that serves as a great deadline to aim for.

Take a look at some of our other activities to improve brain health including exploring your artistic side by learning how to draw in a new medium.

Make a travel bucket list

Look ahead and plan all the things you'll be able to do once quarantine and travel restrictions are lifted. If your desire is to travel more, use this time to read up on different locations you could visit. Libraries are offering virtual subscriptions so you can download books online, and some tourist board websites feature videos offering a virtual tour of the destination. Your goal could be to book a holiday, which then gives you something to look forward to.

Pamper yourself

If you have found yourself busy and stressed at home in 2020, then take some time out to spoil yourself. This could be anything from sitting quietly with your own thoughts, joining an online medication class, a spot of yoga, or listening to calming music. Or go one step further...

Popping out to get a massage or facial isn’t currently an option but making time to pamper yourself still needs to be made a priority to help relax, reduce stress levels and boost self-confidence. Take a look at our guide for how to do an at home spa treatment

Learn to make cocktails

Cocktail making is not reserved exclusively for hen parties. Try your hand at mixology at home and learn to make a range of party drinks so once lockdown is over, you can impress your friends with your new bartending talents. Get started with our Citrus Gin Fizz - one of our favourite cocktails from Didier Teissonniere, Operations Manager at Audley Cooper’s Hill.

Become a wine connoisseur

Discover which wines you like and why, read about the journey from grape to glass, and build on your understanding of wine tasting. You could enjoy this while on a video call with friends. It's almost as good as a face-to-face wine tasting party.

Enjoy a spot of gardening

Gardening has a huge range of health benefits, including promoting feelings of wellbeing regardless of whether you have a garden, allotment, terrace or balcony or just a window sill. Take a look at our top tips for gardening in a small space.

Start a family tree

Trace your ancestry and discover more about your family by building a family tree. Read our guide on how to get started.

Remember also, the importance of staying active. If you’re worried about putting on weight being stuck indoors, follow an online exercise video or get out for a walk each day. If want something a little less energetic to help you get started, then take a look at our chair-based exercises from the Audley Club.

Read about the ways millions of other older people are staying happy and healthy at home this year.