moments matter

A Senior Living Resource Blog from The Goodman Group

6 Mindfulness Activities for Senior Wellness

Posted by The Goodman Group on July 26, 2023

TGG - Mindfulness Activities for Seniors

Practicing mindfulness is hardly a new phenomenon; in fact, the history of meditation and mindfulness practices can be traced back thousands of years. However, it’s only been in the last half a century that the scientific community has begun studying the positive effects mindfulness and meditation yield on individuals’ mental and physical health. The Mayo Clinic now promotes meditation as a powerful way to reduce stress, and the National Institutes of Health cite research that meditation may ease symptoms of depression, and anxiety and even help people struggling with insomnia.

Many studies suggest meditators gain better focus, a greater sense of calm, and even improved memory and creativity. Older adults, in particular, often find mindfulness and meditation help them to navigate through times of transition and adjust to changes to their bodies and lifestyles as they age. Here are six exercises you can try today to practice mindfulness to start experiencing its many benefits. 


One way to start this practice is through mindful breathing. Begin by simply finding a comfortable position; it could be seated, lying down or even standing. Close your eyes and start to pay attention to your inhales and exhales. 

Try breathing in 5s; inhale for 5 seconds, hold for 5 seconds, exhale for 5 seconds, and repeat. As you breathe in and out, notice how your body feels. Gently turn your attention back to your breath if you notice your thoughts start to wander. You can continue this exercise for as long as you feel comfortable. Try starting with five minutes and adjust from there. 


During guided meditation, another person leads you through a meditation exercise. There are many online resources available to help individuals practice guided meditations. Apps like Headspace, Waking Up and Manjit can be downloaded directly onto your phone, making it easy to press play and have an expert guide you through meditation whenever and wherever you’d like. 

There are also videos on YouTube that you can find just by searching ‘guided meditation.’ To take it one step further, you can attend classes or meditation groups if they are offered in your community. One benefit of guided meditation is that it helps you experiment with techniques and learn what kinds of meditation work best for you.


Music can be a powerful tool for relaxation and meditation. Try choosing a song you find beautiful and restful. For example, you may love the composer Debussy and decide to play Clair De Lune. Once the song is playing, give your entire focus to the music. You may keep your eyes open or closed but don’t multitask or focus on anything going on around you. Just find a comfortable spot and spend a few minutes listening to your chosen song. Taking time to listen to one simple song can completely change your mindset for the rest of the day.


Visual meditation is the practice of visualizing people or events during your meditative state. It has been known to enhance your regular meditation practice as it allows you to better direct your relaxed mind toward specific outcomes you’d like to see. Guide to Senior Living Tours CTA

For example, find a photo or a painting of beautiful flowers and set it in front of you. For the next several moments, look into the image and closely observe the elements that contribute to its beauty. You might also try this exercise with a photo of someone you love or by sitting in a park and looking at a tree or something else that catches your eye.


Experienced meditators and mindfulness practitioners often explain that eventually your mindful state can indeed be practiced all day, every day. Simply reminding yourself to pay attention to your thoughts and checking in with yourself on your current state of mind will turn every moment of your day into an opportunity to practice mindfulness. 

Try adding one or two regular mindful moments into your daily routine. For example, if you have a cup of coffee in the morning, make a goal to pay closer attention to the entire experience of drinking your coffee: the smell, the heat of the mug in your hand, the first taste, how it warms your body as you take each sip. Paying attention to the many various, pleasurable sensations this offers you will not just change how you enjoy your coffee, but it will teach you to become less lost in thought, and instead more focused on your present moment throughout the day.


Yoga and meditation have a long, intertwined history. When practicing yoga, you notice the sensations of your body as it moves through space while holding different positions and stretches. Focusing on and moving your body this way is simultaneously a mindfulness practice and workout! Some people initially feel intimidated by yoga but there are many variations such as chair yoga, that are tailored to meet the needs of individuals at all levels of mobility.


When you begin to practice mindfulness, you may feel unsure that you’re practicing correctly. Be gentle with yourself as you embark on this journey. The beautiful thing about practicing mindfulness is there is no clear-cut formula for success. It simply comes down to finding self-soothing techniques that work for you and being able to reliably implement them to benefit your day-to-day life.

Have fun as you begin to develop this new skill and keep an eye out for the many small miracles this practice will show you along the way. Happy meditating.

Topics: Fitness, Senior Living, Spiritual, Moments Matter

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