Gratitude and Valentine’s Day

It’s hard not to think about hearts when you think about Valentine’s Day; they’re on everything from cards to candy. While hearts are often a symbol of love, hearts also bring to mind gratitude.

Gratitude can have a positive impact on the quality of your life. Whether you keep a gratitude journal, jotting down a daily list of things to be grateful for, or take a few quiet moments during the day to contemplate those things that soften your heart, you may experience a welcome shift in your health and your mood.

Here are seven scientifically proven benefits:

  1. Saying thank you is not only the polite thing to do, but showing your appreciation may attract new friends and improve existing friendships. According to a 2014 study published in Emotion thanking people you recently met makes it more likely they will seek an on-going relationship. So thanking a stranger for holding a door open or sending a thank you note to a co-worker who helped with a project can expand and improve your social circle.
  2. According to a 2012 study published in Personality and Individual Differences, grateful people experience less aches and pains and report feeling healthier than other. Grateful people take better care of themselves. They exercise more and visit their doctor regularly.
  3. Gratitude can help alleviate painful and toxic emotions such as envy, resentment, frustration, and regret. Robert Eamons, a prominent gratitude researcher, has conducted numerous studies that link gratitude to well-being. His research confirms that gratitude leads to happiness and reduces depression.
  4. According to a 2012 study by the University of Kentucky, grateful people are more like to act in a kind manner, even when others aren’t as nice. Study participants who had high gratitude scores were less likely to want to seek revenge when they felt slighted than those who scored lower. They were more sensitive and empathetic toward others.
  5. Gratitude leads to better sleep. According to a 2011 study published in Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being spending 15 minutes writing down things you are grateful for will lead to a more restful night’s sleep.
  6. Gratitude improves self-esteem. Some studies show that gratitude reduces the amount of time you spend comparing yourself to your friends and neighbors – a big reason for low self-esteem. Grateful people are more likely to appreciate the success of others.
  7. Gratitude reduces stress and plays a major role in one’s ability to overcome trauma. Studies show that being grateful fosters resilience and improves your mental health.

Valentine’s Day is Monday and we have lots to be grateful for here at SeniorCare. For 43 years now, Gloucester House has hosted a Valentine’s Day Breakfast Fundraiser in support of Meals on Wheels, a program of SeniorCare. In 1974, the Linquata Family began a tradition of donating their restaurant and a full breakfast to help raise much needed funds to help ensure older people who have difficulty preparing their own food, or are unable to get out, receive a hot, nutritious, meal delivered to their home Monday – Friday.

On Friday, March 10, 2017, you can come down to the Gloucester House, 7 – 9:30 a.m. and have a hot, magnificently delicious breakfast for $12. One hundred percent of the proceeds supports Meals on Wheels. The generosity and kindness of the Linquata family is not lost on us. We are grateful for this long standing tradition and we give much thanks to the Linquata Family.

POSTPONED: 43rd Annual Meals on Wheels Valentine’s Day Breakfast (2017)

SeniorCare’s Meals on Wheels Valentines Breakfast Fundraiser
has been postponed until Friday, March 10, 2017. 

 Buy Tickets Now Sponsor Event


SeniorCare Inc. will hold its annual Valentine’s Day Breakfast Fundraiser Breakfast at The Gloucester House, located 63 Rogers Street in downtown Gloucester on Friday, March 10, 2017, from 7:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.  Tickets are $12 per person and include a buffet breakfast. Tickets are available in advance by calling 978-281-1750 or may be purchased at the door. Proceeds from the breakfast will benefit SeniorCare’s Meals on Wheels program.  Sponsorship opportunities are available. For information about the breakfast or to become a sponsor, contact Paula Curley at 978-281-1750 x-560 or paula.curley@seniorcareinc.org.


Thank you to our sponsors:

 

 

 

 

 

Loneliness and Social Isolation

The National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) launched a national campaign, in collaboration with ARRP, last November to spread the word about the growing problem of social isolation and loneliness among older Americans.

There have been many studies over the last few years focused on social isolation and loneliness. These studies consistently show significant health risks associated with feelings of loneliness and the experience of social isolation.

We all feel lonely at times, but when loneliness and isolation become chronic it can be deadly. Mother Theresa didn’t need these recent studies to know that the pain of loneliness was devastating, “the biggest disease today is not leprosy or cancer or tuberculosis, but rather the feeling of being unwanted, uncared for and deserted by everybody.”

Studies show us what Mother Theresa seemed to know, loneliness increases risk of death by 45 percent and chance of developing dementia by 64 percent.

What is unfortunate is that there are not nearly as many studies on interventions that help alleviate chronic loneliness and isolation. What is known is that loneliness, a feeling of not feeling connected with others, and isolation, the actual absence of others, are different. Treatment of each may overlap, but steps to improve relationships may be quite different.

Often there is a stigma we assign to loneliness and that judgement can lead to more loneliness and even additional judgement for not taking action to change how you are feeling. In order to lessen our loneliness we must let go of the belief that there is something wrong with feeling lonely. Whether your loneliness is a result of the loss of family and friends, due to moving, illness, or death, or lack of inter personal skills, loneliness is a common and curable circumstance. Sometimes just one connection during the day can lessen feelings of loneliness, such as the simple pleasantry exchanged with a Meals on Wheels driver.

Identifying that you or a loved one is experiencing loneliness and/or isolation is the first step. Creating opportunities for social interaction can be helpful, such as attending social programs, talking on the phone, and even joining Facebook and participating in postings can create feelings of connectivity. If developing meaningful connections is difficult, regardless of opportunity, then addressing the reasons for that must be addressed.

Combating loneliness is not a straight and narrow path, rather it is winding road that requires a willingness to embrace change and open ourselves to others. When you work toward ending your own loneliness and isolation, you are helping someone else with theirs.

To learn more about how to reduce loneliness and isolation you can visit the n4a website at
http://www.n4a.org/Files/Isolation%20BrochureFINAL.pdf.

Volunteer Drivers Needed for North Shore Meals on Wheels Deliveries

MOW-Got 2 hours-postcard-01SeniorCare Inc. “Meals on Wheels” program is in need of volunteer drivers to deliver noon time meals to homebound seniors throughout the North Shore area. Anyone interested in volunteering one or more mornings a week will be greatly appreciated. Meals on Wheels drivers pick up fully prepared and packaged hot meals on the morning of each delivery.

SeniorCare’s Meals on Wheels program brings a daily meal right to the door for frail and homebound elders. Menus are designed by nutrition experts to meet the needs of older adults and are prepared by a professional caterer. In addition, homebound elders have a daily interaction with the delivery team—sometimes their only human contact that day. SeniorCare currently delivers Meals on Wheels to more than 550 elders each day. Annually, this means 136,216 home-delivered meals and 39,250 meals served at dining sites in Beverly, Essex, Gloucester, Hamilton, Ipswich, Manchester, Rockport, Topsfield, and Wenham.

For information, contact SeniorCare’s Nutrition Department at 1-866-927-1050 or 978 281-1750, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.