Resolve to try a different resolution

Elsie Colley dances with seniors learning line dancing in a class at the Lawton Community Center in Akron, Ohio.
Elsie Colley dances with seniors learning line dancing in a class at the Lawton Community Center in Akron, Ohio. Akron Beacon Journal/MCT

It’s the end of December, and Jan. 1 is coming up Sunday.

Do you roll your eyes at the thought of making New Year’s resolutions?

After all, senior adults have been through this a time or two, and at this point, you might ask, why bother? This year, don’t look at it as lame or in the usual “I ought to do this” expectation. Come up with something fun or unexpected. Need some ideas? Here are some.

Try a new fruit or veggie

This comes dangerously close to the “eat healthier” resolution, but this is more about stepping outside your comfort zone. Have you seen something at the grocery store that looks interesting but you have no idea what to do with it, what it tastes like or what its texture is? Do a search and find out all about it, and while you’re there, find some simple recipes for it. You might find a new favorite; if not, you can scratch it off your list and try that green thing over there that looks interesting.


Here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, there are all sorts of volunteer opportunities. We have museums, parks, public facilities, hospitals and more places that might have need of volunteers. If you’re retired and don’t necessarily want to find a job but want something to do once or twice a week, volunteering might be your solution.

Try a new activity

You don’t have to paddle board or run a marathon to branch out on activity — but then again, you can, if you’re up to it. Activity is just that, being active. If you haven’t been active, try walking a couple of blocks a few times a week and add on distance and frequency as you get used to it. If you’ve been active, go ahead and try out something you’ve been considering but putting off for whatever reason (with your doctor’s blessing, of course).


It’s fun to travel to faraway places, but have you considered making a road trip to a closer-to-home city or town? Don’t judge a destination by its size; small towns can have charm and appeal that larger cities might envy, not to mention an excellent restaurant or two that will never make the Michelin list. Make it a day trip or an overnight visit, and consider staying in a bed and breakfast instead of a chain hotel.

Assess your look

Look in the closet. If “I don’t think so!” immediately comes to your mind, it might be time to overhaul your wardrobe. If that’s too daunting, how about subtle updates? A few new accessories can bring your look into 2017. Even a new pair of shoes can do it. The next time you go to the salon or barber shop, ask your stylist or barber what he or she would do if you offered free rein. If it’s someone you know and trust, you should get a look that’s appropriate for your hair, your age and your lifestyle. Give it a try!

(Lose weight)

OK, yes, I’m throwing it in here, but it’s the last thing. On the other hand, it could be the most important thing. If your doctor has told you (over and over) that you need to ditch those 20, 30 or more pounds, do it. He or she isn’t being mean; if it’s a matter of concern for a medical professional, it should be for you, too.

Tammy Smith: 228-896-2130, @Simmiefran1