Stand in any store, airport or restaurant and you will see that people are communicating more today than ever before – it’s just not face-to-face in most instances! In fact, some young people are “chatting” across the room silently – through technology.

What does that mean for seniors nestled happily in their retirement homes? It means seniors can:

• Stay in touch with family miles away
• Stay connected with grandchildren and develop close bonds with them
• Easily contact friends to make plans
• Be less fearful when out and about by having a way to contact others in emergency situations

And the best part, it is all available through the use of a smart phone. Even if you are a senior who is likely to shy away from the use of technology, you can learn to use just a few options and stick with those. Of course, using the phone for what was once its primary purpose – calling is the given. But consider texting. A quick note or photo to share something special or curious with a friend makes everything more fun.

Just think, you are off on a day trip from Galloway Ridge with other seniors and you happen to wander away from the group. Rather than being alarmed, you whip out your phone and quickly text your friends to find out where they are. No drama. No fear. You simply find out and rejoin the group.

Likewise, you are in the campus library and you decide to see what you can find about WWII because your grandson is working on a report for school. You come up with a really interesting map that will fit right in with his project. You can take a photo and text it right to him or his parent. Instantly, Grandpa is a hero!

It can be a nice change to chat with a friend or one of your children as you walk the mile for exercise every day. In fact, you can make an appointment to meet at a certain time and exercise together while you chat. Time flies when you have someone to share it with.

You might be surprised how quickly you catch on and it becomes second nature. If you don’t want to use the phone (and call) you could opt for a larger screen on a tablet. Another bonus is that they have larger keyboards for you to use, too.

You don’t have to let technology overwhelm you. Tell your children and grandchildren how you want to use it and let them guide you in just the bits you need and how to do the tasks you want to do. You might just surprise yourself!