Using music as a means of relaxation is a great way to distract someone who may be distressed. Music can be used in a variety of ways, but it is most important to choose music that your love one connects to and is familiar with. While jazz may soothe one person it could agitate another.
Choose music that is tailored to the person. Ideally, something that the person has heard in their youth. Songs that were popular when the person was in their youth, teens, or early twenties would be a good place to start. To discover the best music, ask questions like these:
Did the loved one grow up with ethnic music and have favorites?
Favorite movie musical, if any?
Favorite Broadway musical, if any?
Is there a favorite WW2 or other war-related song?
Is there a favorite opera? Classical score?
Does/did the loved one attend religious services? What denomination? Do they have any favorite hymns?
You can also find lists of the most popular songs from each decade at Acclaimed Music.
Have a playlist of at least five songs that are soothing. Sit in a comfortable chair and listen
Making a list of things you are grateful for can help you refocus on the things that matter most.
Write a list of things you’re grateful to have in your life and display it somewhere you can see it often. We have a tendency to focus on the negative, so remind yourself of all you are grateful for.
Deep breathing can be done anywhere and at anytime, and can help you relax and refocus.
Turn your attention to your breath. Breathe in through your nose for a count of four. Exhale for a count of four. Repeat this process rythmically until you feel your body and your mind have calmed.
A great activity to do together is to start a fish tank. It has been suggested that just watching fish in their habitat, their movements and their interactions with other fish can be a stress relieving and entertaining.
Allow the care recipient to make the decorative decisions with regards to what color rocks you will choose, what figurines you may put in the tank and what type of fish you would like to have. Selection of a fish bowl can be modified to a fish bowl to fit your budget. There are also mechanical fish for sale that are battery operated to swim about the tank (however, read reviews before you buy).
The Multi-Colored Bean Jar Decoration is a fun way to create a decorative element for the home. More importantly, the craft project also involves touching and sorting the beans, which keeps the hands busy.
This is a great way to provide some pampering. A manicure complete with a beautiful color can leave someone feeling refreshed and more vibrant.
Give your loved one a manicure.
Many people grew up learning different skills using their hands. Skills could include woodworking, carpentry, crocheting, knitting, model building, and even daily chores. Manipulating every day objects like opening a door with a key takes them back to a more independent time.
Hardware, Locks, or other objects that can be disassembled and reassembled fairly easily.
If your care recipient appears restless, agitated or idle for long periods of time, try providing him or her with familiar hardware or objects that they can hold in their hands and manipulate. If you don't already have some supplies at home you can go to the local hardware store and pick up a variety of useful objects. The objective is to choose pieces that can be disassembled and reassembled fairly easily. Locks or PVC piping or another material that they worked with in their youth could work.
Nostalgic TV programs and movies with a light snack can be a good way to relax.
Watch one of your loved one's favorite television shows from when they were growing up.
"Spa Time" is a great way to help your loved one relax, and spend some quality time with you.
Pick and choose your spa supplies based on your choice of spa activities.
Some ideas for "Spa Time" may include playing calming music and having some relaxing lighting (battery operated candles are inexpensive and safe.) Aromatherapy can also provide a tranquil sensory experience, lavender: rose, lemon and vanilla are popular scents. Arm, hand and scalp massages are excellent as well. Another popular idea is a foot soak in warm, scented water, followed by a gentle foot massage.
This practice helps you focus on where you would like to be, and removes you from your daily stresses.
Find a quiet and relaxing space, and sit in a comfortable position. Start by focusing on your breath; breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Clear your mind, and visualize a safe and calming scene. For instance, you can envision a place where you can relax and be at peace, or you can envision yourself acheiving something that you have been wanting to do.