Love is in the air. Whether you’ve already found that special someone or are searching for your soulmate, it’s easy to get swept up in the romance and sensation of this special holiday.
Senior loneliness has been making major headlines as waves of older adults are increasingly finding themselves with limited social connections. Author Deb Hallisey explained some of the major records behind this epidemic:
“Feelings of isolation are prevalent in our aging loved ones for a variety of reasons. Loss of mobility which leads to limited social engagements and meeting new people is one cause. The biggest is the death of family and friends… It is incredibly hard on our elders as the circle of people that know them and share their history gets smaller and smaller.”Deb Hallisey, Advocate for Mom and Dad
(Read more: https://advocateformomanddad.com/senior-isolation-what-can-we-do/)
In fact, social isolation is so serious, the New Jersey state legislature just passed a bill that establishes a task force to study its effects and explore potential solutions.
As Valentine’s Day approaches, we encourage you to go out of your way to express love and care to the seniors in your life.
Keep reading for 14 simple and creative ways to show your affection to the seniors in your life!1 Pick up the phone and sing them a love song.
If the recipient of your affection is tech savvy, send them a video they can watch again and again. Your grand gesture just might make their day (or week!)
2 Send a love note in the mail.
It doesn’t matter how old you are, there is nothing like getting a wonderful surprise in the mail. The Dollar Tree carries adorable cards. And who ever said you have to buy just one?
Even if it’s a $5 bouquet from Trader Joe’s, everyone can appreciate the beauty and freshness of a bouquet of flowers.
Extra credit: Give a real plant that you can plant in the spring! 4 Share the sweetness.
In this season of amore, there is no shortage of the sweet stuff! Every time you turn around, you see candies, cookies, and cakes. You can’t go wrong simply taking a time out to enjoy a delicious dessert together. 5 Drop off a meal.
Nothing says, “I care about you” like food you don’t have to fix yourself! Chances are, you’ll be doing more than one person a favor. 6 Make a slideshow or printed album of your most loved memories.
Use Google Photos or an app on your phone to create a movie with your photographic moments or shell out a few bucks to put together a nice photo book. 7 Give the gift of music.
Create a playlist of songs you know they love or that remind you of them and share it with them. Listen to it together and reminisce. 8 Spread love all year long.
Write 52 reasons why you care for them or the things you love about them and put them in a jar so they can read one each week! 9 47-Across: Things that Make you Go, “Awwww.”
Make your own puzzle with life events or things you know about your loved one. There are all types of free, online puzzle makers. Visit https://crosswordlabs.com/ for a free crossword maker. 10 Schedule a lunch date or set up a time to grab some coffee.
Prepare for your visit by thinking about some conversation topics, like their first kiss or earliest crush, getting married, or special moments with a loved one. You might be surprised what you discover! 11 Sign up for a music or art class or experience you can do together.
You can check your local senior centers for some great opportunities or get in touch with a local university or community college for continuing education classes.
Extra credit: Sign up for more than one session. 12 Offer to take care of a chore or errand that needs to be done.
Everyone can appreciate being able to mark something off of the list! It can be something as simple as stopping by to take out the trash, or a grand gesture, like paying for a service you know they need. 13 Make your own matinee.
Reel over a romantic movie from their younger years together. Nothing brings people closer like the experience of watching a great film. Hit up the Dollar Tree for your snacks before you press play! 14 Just be.
You don’t always have to do something extraordinary. Never underestimate the power your presence alone has to make a positive impact on another person. Sometimes spending time, just being is the greatest gift of all!
No matter what you decide to do, what matters most is spreading love and care to those in your life. We hope this list sparked ideas that will help you make a sweet gesture and a lasting impact this Valentine’s Day and all year ’round!
What are some other ways you have made someone in your life feel special? Feel free to share in the comments!