Activity theory and gerontology have been used now for some time to increase the quality of life of elderly people. Activity theory is basically an idea or concept that suggests that older people will get important benefits and they will be able to make meaningful contributions to other people's lives if they are involved in activities.
Activity theory believes that people have opinions about themselves based on two sources. These sources the things they can do and the positions they can fill in live. As people age, they tend to give up many positions -- people retire from work, lose their spouses, leave clubs and unions or drop out from professional or recreational organizations. As a result people change their opinions about themselves and they may end up losing zest for life or having a low sense of identity. And this is why as people age, they need to keep themselves busy so that they fill positions or roles they may have left behind. And this is what activity theory and gerontology is all about. It stresses on the fact that older people need to have some form of activity in their lives in order to boost their self-image and self-esteem so that they feel they are making valuable contribution to society and the people around them.
Research conducted has shown that older adults do benefit from activities that make them feel good about themselves. The quality of the activity undertaken also plays an important role. Doing an activity for the sake of doing it can have negative repercussions. Therefore, an activity undertaken by a person as he ages should have meaning to the person. It can be gardening, knitting, visiting the museum, chatting with friends, joining clubs or just greeting other shoppers at the supermarket. The activity should increase the person's sense of wellbeing.
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