Socializing in Senior Living: 5 Tips for Making New Friends

Many 55+ Americans move to active adult living communities each year, searching for a more relaxed and simplistic lifestyle, seeking not only quality care and comfort but also new friendships and meaningful connections. However, moving to active adult living communities is no small feat. Packing up a lifetime of belongings and starting over in a new place, with new people in a new culture can be intimidating.

You can continue to read to learn how moving to active adult communities increases socialization and overall health and get tips for making friends fast in your new active adult community.

Socializing in Active Adult Living

Socializing in Senior Living: 5 Tips for Making New FriendsZachary Staruch of The Pelican Team had this to say about active adult living socialization perks:

Friends can make your life more fun and meaningful, but did you know that it also has been proven to improve overall health, boost self-esteem, and even potentially prevent dementia? Socialization has been shown to have a positive impact on the immune system, with more social people having fewer colds, lower blood pressure, and improved mental health, decreasing feelings of depression. Mental health improvements are significant within just hours of social contact. Studies have also shown that people who have the same levels of companionship and emotional support are less likely to develop dementia than those who are more isolated. 

Great Tips for Making Friends in Active Adult Living

Aging can make socializing more difficult as health limitations and mobility can keep seniors more isolated at home. A move to active adult living is a great way to fight off loneliness and the dangers of social isolation. But, for many seniors, moving to a new place can be an intimidating thought, and forming new friendships can be overwhelming. How can you make new friends in active adult living? Here are 5 tips to ease the transition into making new friends quickly.

1. Be Active in the Community Events

Your senior living community will have a varied and dynamic calendar that will have several things going on each day. Find a couple of activities or events that interest you and make it a priority to attend regularly. This will also help you to make friends that have similar interests. Active adult living typically comes hand-in-hand with events coordination, whether it be a game of bingo or a book club meeting, there is something for everyone to enjoy!

2. Make Meals a Social Event

Invite those you meet throughout the day to enjoy a meal together in the dining room, set aside a time and a meeting place, and make it a social event! This is a wonderful way to bring people together from various activities at one time. Food is always the greatest go-to when looking to bring people together. The best part? Many active adult communities showcase fun, immersive cooking classes that seniors can take to connect with friends, or learn a new trick or two to bring to their own kitchen!

3. Find Other New Residents

Chances are you are not the only new resident in your active adult living community. Seek out other new residents or make an effort to meet those who have moved in after you! You can learn the ropes together, while offering each other advice, and join each other in new activities. You can even form a group of new residents of your active adult living community and regularly meet for games of pickleball, tennis, book club, or bridge!

4. Ask a Family Member to Join You For an Activity or Meal

If attending any of the socials or groups alone feels too intimidating, ask a trusted family member or good friend to accompany you. This will give you someone to talk to before events start and give you confidence in starting new conversations with potential friends. Grandchildren are a wonderful option for family members to come along, as children tend to draw the attention of residents of active living communities, and tend to be a great conversation starter.

5. Be Patient

Give yourself grace and be patient as you adjust to your new environment. Making friends takes time, but regular interaction and a kind smile can go a long way. Consistency is key, and if you notice anyone new and alone, it never hurts to come around and say "hello!" Before you know it, you will fit right in and make friends that might very quickly become family.

The Bottom Line

Making friends takes time, it is never a guarantee, but in following this carefully laid out guide, we hope that friends will be on the horizon for you. Let the professionals at The Steller Group guide you in finding your new forever home in the many beautiful active adult communities in Denver, CO today!

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