Meaningful Activities



someone living with dementia still needs to fill the day our problem our difficulty as care partners is how do we help them do that how do we figure out how to make the day meaningful not just for them but also for us because we still are living our lives too so it sort of helps to think about well what goes in to a meaningful life and what I tell you is there are four categories of activities the first one is feeling productive valued doing work now it may be that you get paid for it or maybe it's just people say thank you but it gives you a sense that I make a difference that who I am and how I am and what I can do still has value for people and this is really critical for my sense of well-being and self it's part of what makes us feel like human being that is cared about by somebody else and that I'm still here for a reason and the reason matters now the second type of activity that we all do is called leisure or fun play things that you do because they're fun to do you do because they give you joy because they make you feel good you're not gonna get anything out of them financially or maybe even feedback why's ya like it because you like it there's something about it that bumps your energy level that gives you that yeah yeah yeah you find that doing it is pleasurable in and of itself and to be honest it comes in two major categories passive it just sort of happens to you and you're absorbing it so it's coming in or active you're doing something that gets you to feel that way and an example would be watching something versus actively choosing to engage in something so I could watch a game of cards or I could play a game of cards two different ways to find joy and who you are sort of may drive a little bit of which of those you like better but you want some of each and win your life all of us have some of each now the third category of activities what do we do with our time how do we fill our time has to do with self-care taking care of ourselves taking care of our body taking care of our brain taking care of the place we live taking care of business so it means things like for instance getting around in the world transportation it includes things as simple as walking getting in and out of chairs and is complicated as figuring out a bus system or how to get on an airplane and then transfer so self-care is big and it's little it includes things like taking care of your own body bathing showering or eating toileting grooming but it also includes things like taking care of your body exercise and taking care of your brain thinking doing things that are fun and interesting to your brain so you stimulate your brain and additionally it includes taking care of the world around you maybe cleaning up the house emptying the garbage taking things from here to there moving things around in the world so that they're where they need to be when you need them shopping managing money so self-care the fourth one and the one we often don't think too much about is rest and restoration or if we think about it recharging your batteries what we think about asleep and sleep is certainly one way you can do that but we need to realize that there are other ways you recharge your batteries and they're dependent highly on who you are and how you get your energy back on board how do you get yourself charged up to do something some people like to go off by themselves and some people like to be around people and the more they're around people the more energy they get has to do with that idea of being an introvert or an extrovert recharging batteries is an important part of every day if your battery doesn't get recharged you don't get enough rest and restoration and includes spiritual restoration bringing your spirit back up you need that but you also need taking care of yourself having fun and feeling productive so meaningful activities for somebody with dementia need to be balanced they still need all four of these and frankly as a Care Partner so do you one of our biggest challenges is remembering that people need to feel valued and productive and that there's more to rest and restoration than sleep and not all leisure should be passive and taking care of my brain and my body and myself should match my abilities I'm doing the best I can with that so what we want to do is create the right support in the right care so they can shine what we want to do now is show you some examples of these different kinds of activities sometimes in a group and sometimes alone but you can see what we're talking about how you can take someone who is experiencing a diamond moment emerald amber Ruby pearl and as a sapphire you have choices you can provide the right support in the right care in these kinds of activities filling the day so you get what you need and so today and when that happens you're doing it just right all right so we're gonna do it okay group this morning we need to make some muffins for breakfast in the morning so it's blueberry muffins okay anybody need cups here in their bag okay I got that that barbecue guys that far didn't quit on you huh let's see now notice we're blaming the product not the person that bag it's such a problem there we go and hand it back after you eat your muffin mix in your bowl there's a cup of meals right beside your bowl that you can pour in there with your husband got it good job notice how our friend is looking around what do you do next and what's nice about a small group okay I'll get that for you people are doing it some folks are doing it so she gets to see what comes in accident she does it uh-huh Lisa can you get that cup of milk and pour in your muffin mix q somebody up to get started and guess what there we go other people are doing it too because they see what's going on let's go ahead and stir it up and see if we have enough milk in there we got plenty of milk if when they lure okay now one person who's able get started with a certain automatic these our ladies have made a lot of muffins look at that shoulder movement look at that action I have a job our house yours look at what we're running sweet mm-hmm sir very good job but didn't expect yourself around the tires about you know you're mixing it's an animal put your pups in there any meter in a minute we're sure well do you have known a blind hole looking good Freddie lots of reinforcement there you go yes can you put these paper cups in there for me can you put paper cups in your step by step all right you ready spiffy mix right in there good in here yeah we may have more mix than we have cups to put it in if we do we'll get another pan here we come yeah sharing a muffin pan getting them all filled up we may have too much just a little warning there might be extra don't panic I want your favorite part occasion the bacon or the eating uh-oh one to eat snacks what's your favorite snack a muffin muffin I like nothing stupid every what's your favorite part of cooking eating cooking itself cooking the cooking is better I kind of like to eat and better myself so here's a lady who cares more about cooking than eating if we just have her eat maybe she won't eat so much but if we get her to cook and complement her she'll eat with us cuz she cooked for us success if you fill up about 6 and William yeah he's into detail yeah you might we need to support what he cares about don't put another spoonful in each one of them and then let's see how cuz success is in William's eyes alright y'all tell me when you're ready and I'll put it in the oven is it ready people are using their hands using their eyes to accomplish a task this is terrific this is wonderful ready and they did something productive something of value I'm still me hmm that was soon here you go YUM it's cuz her hand he's coming to her mouth versus you poking her in the mouth with your spoon and her bring on whoa what's that oh wait a minute oh yeah oh it's okay and this is like okay I mean got it that's pretty easy once I know what it is hmm there you go Wow in that bun Oh both of you're gonna have a better time and what I'm doing is supporting under elbow and so that gives her a little added information and when I do that she sit up quite a little bit better too and I can judge this is not amazing in that fun yeah we're gonna try the same thing with miss Frances a minute soon she's okay with it see if she likes sheets fine right now but time will come is it good Lucille do you like chili it's pretty tasty there you go ladies here's the deal I made a picture and I cut them up but now I'm not sure if I have all the pieces so I wondered if you could put this puzzle together for me and see if I've got everything and I've got several and I need a little help now what you see me doing here is giving them a reason to do what I'm asking them to do and see if I've lost a piece or more I've done something I might have made a mistake can you help me as we're gonna spread them out cuz I wanted to do them later but I've got to make sure I've got everything I'm supposed to have yeah and what I did here is I took some pictures I blew him up I printed them out on cardstock so try you ever all of them should be and cut them out the thing is I don't know now what's nice about this is if I lose a piece guess why have all the pieces are five rows not a big deal they're up there if we need them what did I use pictures up for this group hood flowers see what you can do bright colors clear shapes let's see how they do with this did you are you agent I love jigsaw Schnauzer ooh look at you you're great look at that you're good at that there we go look at the hand dye activity here look at how they're trying to figure out how things go together got too many let's see here Martha let me let me try something take that piece and try it right there now one of my friends needs a little more help here it's too many pieces she can't get started now let's turn that one there she goes look keep turning it try it right over here see if you can get it to go right there flip it around now notice how I tapped on the table and gave her the cue but I'm not taking the piece from her she's doing it yeah perfect all right well now we got okay now I think maybe that's in the middle on the bottom try and see if it fits like right here or not so I'm giving her a little hint just straight up uh-huh and see if you get hurt Alanna shifted maybe – so does that feel right does that look right perfect and and here I think trying to see if that glass piece fit – oh huh oh look at you that's it see I had it upside down she's smarter than I am and look at the lady next her she's already got that one together you had all your pieces Evelyn that's great look at you you're good you must have done crosswords or jigsaws before – yeah Wow and look at you let's see if we can get yours to come together let's see here see if maybe that one will fit right over try it right there well let's slide maybe turn it this what let's turn it maybe like this and try now notice this one has diagonals it's a little more challenging let's see if we can get this one see if that little point fits right in there that's perfect oh yes I think so we think yep nice see if that one goes down there right here I notice how I'm handing one piece at a time yeah I think you're right now we got to at the top just see if you can get those two and lined up here with a little bit of organizational help here and a little bit of structure look at how well she's doing that wide edge see and look at how she's using her brain her eyes her hands he was like her thinking right now one that goes right here it's sort of tricky why don't you put them all out that might work ease now I'm trying to do two things at one time let's see how this goes that's it oh look they found my missing piece for me well you got a good eye let's see you got it on the first try thank you and you ladies tell you what give yourselves a hand this is you all got it all in one boy you guys are good look I used to do those did you I can tell y'all must have been real good at this when you were younger we didn't have nothing that we didn't have no crayons or any of that stuff you just had puzzles yeah we had puzzles well boy I'll tell you it stayed with you you you

Author Since: Mar 11, 2019

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