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Guest Blog: Digging Your Way Out of Social Isolation

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This week we feature a guest blog from Sally Writes with a look at the benefits of gardening as we age.  

Maintaining quality of life is one of the biggest challenges for many aging adults. Quality of life includes not just one, but many facets of life. Mobility, loss of loved ones, and illness are all things that can impact the quality of one’s golden years. However, the isolation that can be a byproduct of all of the aforementioned factors, is perhaps the most overarching issues faced by the older population. The good news, is that a solution for isolation may be as close as your garden.

The Benefit of Green Spaces

Gardening can be a wonderful hobby for the 65 plus community. It turns out, that getting outside provides a host of benefits for older adults. Not only does it provide a change of scenery, a factor that is incredibly important by itself, but it also reduces stress, gives you more energy, improves memory, and increases overall health and longevity. Another benefit of gardening is its flexibility. Even when older adults have medical conditions, or mobility issues that necessitate in-home care assistance, a pot garden either on the porch, or in the kitchen is still a wonderful way to keep interest in a hobby going.

Gardening clubs

Joining a gardening club can be a great choice for older adults who are looking to get out of the house and do something they enjoy. Gardening clubs will not only broaden the horizons of knowledge about gardens and plants, but you’ll meet many wonderful and interesting people along the way! Studies have even shown that getting out and doing something with others in the outdoors can greatly reduce the complications that can come from social isolation. There are also many types of gardening clubs and plant societies, so there’s something out there for everyone.

You’ll Find no Moss on a Rolling Stone

One of the challenges when combating isolation, is that the depression that tends to accompany being alone for a substantial part of the day, tends to be detrimental to motivation and make even small tasks feel unmanageable. However, the good news is that even small steps can turn into better habits, and it’s okay to take things one at a time. Most local gardening clubs are enthusiastic about people who simply want to learn more about their organization and what they are about. Visiting different clubs in your area can be a great first step in exploring what’s available in your area and starting a new hobby, or continuing with an old one.


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