In recent years, the concept of growth mindset has gained popularity in schools and the world at large. Growth mindset means that our human minds can adapt to absorb any skillset or information, regardless of age, gender, and established strengths and weaknesses. Growth mindset is an extremely powerful idea, as it suggests that boundaries and weaknesses that stand in the way of new skills and knowledge can be overcome through determination and a positive attitude.
The growth mindset model has, for the most part, been used as a way to encourage young people in taking on new challenges. However, at All Seniors Care, we like to look at how growth mindset can be applied to adults in senior housing, and how this model of learning can have a positive impact on our staff and our clients.
In this post, we’re going to explore how novel experiences and activities can promote brain function and overall wellbeing. All Seniors Care centres are equipped with a myriad of resources to encourage folks to take on new challenges on a daily basis, thereby keeping the mind active and healthy!
- The simple act of meeting new people and interacting with them can advance your mental, emotional and physical health. Face to face interactions improve cognition since you are required to process social cues and facial expressions very quickly. Furthermore, when you listen to someone tell their story, it stirs compassion and may cause you to revisit preconceived notions.
- We can tell you from personal experience that our senior housing in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Quebec is home to some of the most fascinating individuals in the country, with hours upon hours of amazing stories to tell from their rich and varied lives. Living in a state-of-the-art retirement residence has many advantages, but the greatest perk is simply being part of a supportive community with great friends and caring staff members. Weekly morning chats over hot coffee range from the current news to stories about residents’ families and loved ones.
Learning New Skills
- While intimate conversation is great, it’s always healthy to pursue new hobbies and keep up with your favourite activities. Fortunately, All Seniors Care centres offer a full weekly calendar of games, exercises, prayer services and movie screenings! Trivia, Cribbage and Scrabble are all games that keep the mind nimble and robust and encourage a healthy sense of competition (added incentive to really work the brain!).
- Dance classes and aqua fit, on the other hand, require coordination and motor skills. If you never had the chance to take up dancing when you were younger, now is the perfect time to learn to waltz, line dance or salsa. Our residents at Saskatoon’s Preston Park II location were even caught on film recently doing the floss! The video has gone viral and some of the featured dancers were interviewed on the CBC! The consensus amongst the amazing flossing dancers is that dancing is a healthy way to exercise and stay current while expressing yourself, and, of course, feeding the soul! Whether it’s a new language, an instrument or a video game on your iPad that improves motor skills and cognition, learning new skills will boost psychological resilience and your ability to problem solve.
- With a full-time job and a family to raise, you may not have had the time to read as much as you would have liked in the past. This can be remedied in retirement! Even if you’re not the world’s biggest reader, studies show that reading even a few pages of fiction a night will help calm your mind in preparation for a peaceful sleep. Whether you prefer fantasy, literary fiction or biographies and history, disappearing into a good book can be meditative, entertaining and educational!
- You may even be compelled to begin writing down stories from your own life, or devise the next great mystery novel! Resident-led writing groups are a fantastic way to ignite personal expression and community support. Some amateur writers may find a great deal of satisfaction in writing stories for their own pleasure, while others may want to organize a public reading that brings together all of the residents for a night of sharing.
Caring for Living Things
- When spring comes around in Canada, it’s prime time for gardening. Whether it’s flowers, greens, tomatoes or root vegetables, our residents love to show off their green thumbs and tend a healthy garden on our green land. Tending the soil, watering and weeding, fertilizing and pruning plants are all part of a day’s work through autumn when gardening season comes to a close. Caring for plants fosters a connection with nature and requires day-to-day consistency that strengthens the memory and sense of responsibility. Not only that, but when family and friends come to visit, your pro gardening skills will be on display!
- Unlike many competing retirement residences, All Seniors Care has a pet-friendly policy, meaning you’re free to bring your cat, dog or goldfish along when you move into any of our locations. Much like gardening, caring for a pet requires consistency – except pets need attention several times a day all year round. Pets tend to become mascots for whichever residence they join, with everyone pitching in to take care of them and make them feel loved and welcome. Occasionally we organize guests to bring in pets, as well, in keeping with the positive philosophy of pet therapy; we also organize outings to nearby farms from time to time to visit with horses, pigs and other highly intelligent animals.
Finding What Works for You
In this comprehensive post, we’ve laid out a wide variety of options to maintain brain function and a positive attitude in your retirement years. Choosing a few of these options and creating a healthy balance is an art form in and of itself, fortunately, each of our locations employs a full-time Health and Wellness director to help you find your rhythm. If you’d like to hear more about our facilities and our commitment to healthcare and lifestyle, we’re here to answer your questions anytime!