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As we age, it’s important that we practice self-care and mindfulness. Aging can be stressful and hard. With aging can come a myriad of challenges, including loneliness, health problems, loss, and the difficulties of caring for an aging partner. It’s easy to sacrifice one’s own self-care and mindfulness when faced with these types of overwhelming situations. Many caregivers looking after an aging or ill family member focus on caring for that other person and fail to focus on their own needs. In the face of such challenges, it’s important to remember that we all need to focus on our own well-bring in order to deal with stress and avoid feeling overwhelmed and burned out.


Self-care doesn’t need to involve major life changes. One can practice self-care in small steps taken each day. Try the following self-care techniques:

  • Call or meet a friend or loved one to talk
  • Go for a walk outside and pay attention to your surroundings
  • Eat a healthy snack or meal to nourish your mind and body
  • Spend five minutes sitting down and taking deep breaths
  • Try yoga or meditation
  • Savor a cup of hot tea or coffee
  • Get in bed a little earlier to get more sleep
  • Spend ten or fifteen minutes reading a good book
  • Take a stretch break after sitting
  • Put away your phone for a half hour
  • Journal about your thoughts and feelings
  • Spend time in nature
  • Think about people and or things you are grateful for
  • Light a relaxing candle
  • Smile and take pleasure in the things you are doing


In addition to self-care, learning to be mindful as you go about your day can help you feel less overwhelmed by life’s challenges. Mindfulness refers to the ability to be present in the moment and focus on whatever you are doing. This includes being intentional in whatever you are doing in that particular moment. Mindfulness can be important for seniors’ overall well-being. Mindfulness can help seniors deal with difficulties, especially when things seem like they are spiraling out of control . Seniors who practice mindfulness, or any kind of meditation, are better able to face challenges with grace and improved resiliency.

We all encounter stressors in our lives. To remain mindful and deal with this stress in a healthy way, try meditation. For those of us who don’t already meditate and who need some guidance, the S.T.O.P. Technique can be a good place to start. This technique involves the following four steps:

  • Stop: Stop and interrupt your thoughts. Pause what you’re doing. Sit up straight, try to feel calm, and notice whatever sensations you’re feeling in that moment.
  • Take a Breath: Breathe slowly in through your nose, fill your belly with your breath, and breathe out slowly through your mouth. Repeat this two or three more times. Feel your body relax with each inhale and release tension with each exhale.
  • Observe: Observe your thoughts, emotions, and physical reactions in that moment. What thoughts do you notice, what emotions to you feel, and how does your body feel? Tune into this and sit with it for a few moments.
  • Proceed: Proceed with intention and mindfully go through the rest of the steps in your day feeling strong, wise, and present.