There's always something new to do!
Have you got time to fill?
Although time feels like it's speeded up over the years, finding things to do to fill in the long stretches that have become your day can feel overwhelming. More times than not, it's our favourite TV characters that keep us entertained until night arrives and it's time for bed. But they don't talk to you, they don't ask or care how you're doing. They're not real. They are familiar, though, and we take some comfort in that. However; don't you think it would be good to meet some real-life characters, ones who you can laugh out loud with or offer a shoulder to cry on? If you take up a hobby, you can do all this and more.
Over 70% of people aged 60 and over take up a new hobby
See, you're not too old. You've heard it a thousand times already that you're never too old (to learn new things). So, if you find yourself at a loose end more often than not, maybe it's time to move ahead.
Benefits of taking up new hobbies after 60
Trying new things isn't just about finding ways to fill the time. You've probably told younger members of your family or a friend they should take up a hobby, yet, we seldom follow our own advice, do we? Here's a reminder what you're missing out on:
Activities keep you agile
If you've not had any major joint issues but you hobble to the kettle between adverts, then maybe you'd benefit from a little more exercise. You don't necessarily need to join a running club, but simply going to and from the place of your new favourite pastime will keep you agile and increase your stamina. You'll be leaping to the kettle and back in no time.
You'll make new friends
If you join a new club, inevitably you'll meet new people and form friendships; you will all have something in common to start with, so it'll be easy once you've all been introduced. Remember, any doubts you have are all based on fear; fear of being disliked, being rubbish, being an old grump, etc. It takes all kinds of people to make a world and you're one of us. Don't let fear hold you back.
Increases your brain activity
Not long ago it was a common belief that after a certain age the brain loses its ability to learn new things. Our brain cells start to die off. However, in recent years, research carried out by all major institutions who study cognitive behaviour acknowledge our brains do have the capacity to learn well into old age. But like any muscle, your brain needs flexing. Any activity which involves learning something new is guaranteed to increase your brain function.
Pass on your valuable experience to others
If trying something new really does send you into a rabbit caught in the headlights state, then how about doing something you used to do, before your life of servitude and responsibility took over? Doing something familiar is less daunting and you'll probably slot right back into it. More so, you'll be in a great position to help anybody who's new to the subject. You might even end up helping run the class.
What activities other people in your age group enjoy
Depending how old you are, chances are you've potentially got a good few years ahead of you yet. That means there's plenty of time to get your teeth stuck into something more challenging than baking buns. In fact, when Age UK carried out a survey, the results proved that life for the over 60s is anything but dull, and that there's still a lot to do. The results are enlightening:
Become an adrenalin junkie
Nearly 20% of pensioners said they would love to try a new sport like bike riding or windsurfing. Some said they'd like to try something more extreme such as those favoured by adrenaline junkies. Parachute jump, anyone?
More than a quarter of us surveyed regret never learning a foreign language. If you fancy visiting a far away place and mixing with the locals, learning a new lingo will be both a valuable asset and provide a perfect opportunity to give your brain a workout.
Get out into the open air
Consider joining the Ramblers
. There are local groups throughout the country and as a member you would be entitled to walk with any of them that you wished, at any time. Walks vary from a stroll around a village followed by a pub lunch, to much more testing hikes up into our beautiful British countryside, so there's something for nearly everyone. It costs £34 to join (there are concessions) and you'll need proper equipment; good boots and a rucksack at least; but once you're a member you could find yourself going out several times a week, in good company. You'll have the enjoyment of wondering through scenery that you never knew existed, meet new friends and improve your fitness too. All for less than a pound a week.
Strut your stuff
Going dancing has been a long tradition for the over 60s; some pensioners in their 70s and 80s have been going since they were teenagers. It's probably no surprise that over 20% of us would like to (finally) learn how to train our two left feet so we can join in the fun.
Join a yoga class
Taking up yoga seems to be gaining in popularity; hardly surprising given the health benefits. There's dozens of different types and they don't all involve tying your body in knots. Some forms focus on breathing to help balance both your body and mind, others involve only light exercise.
What's your passion?
Dating, learning new DIY skills, body-building, and even trying out their acting abilities are all other hobbies people said they'd like to take up. Otherwise, there's the usual walking groups, coffee mornings and the occasional charity event to get involved with. Whatever your likes and dislikes, however random your passions are, there'll be a club or class for it. And if there isn't, you could always start one. It's easy to start feeling forlorn and disengaged, but you're still part of this world, and without people like you, there would be no groups to join. Pretty soon, you'll be complaining that you don't have any free time any more.
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