IRVINE, Calif., June 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Comfort Keepers®, a market-leading provider of uplifting home care for seniors and adults who need assistance, today announced that it will celebrate its second annual National Day of Joy on June 24, 2020. The National Day of Joy, which takes place every year on the last Wednesday in June, was established by Comfort Keepers in 2019 to help inspire and encourage people to experience joy and share it with others; an action that has become more meaningful in the current COVID-19 environment.
"The global health crisis we're experiencing has, in many cases, had a profoundly negative impact on many people who are living in isolation, away from family and friends and unable to participate in their usual activities," Carl McManus, Chief Executive Officer, Comfort Keepers, North America. "While Comfort Keepers established the National Day of Joy in 2019 to help people find happiness in everyday moments regardless of what may be happening in the world, its existence has been particularly meaningful this year. Taking time to identify and acknowledge the positive elements of our daily lives that bring joy is an important way to improve our physical and emotional health as well as overall well-being."
Finding the silver lining in any situation can have a positive mental health impact. Laughter, in particular, has been shown to mitigate the negative effects of stress, improve mood, curb anxiety and depression and in some cases, help relieve pain.i
Prior to the COVID-19 crisis, Americans were already on the quest to find joy, peace and balance in their busy lives, in an effort to improve mental health. Simple, sometimes mundane activities have become increasingly more meaningful in today's setting, as more people are spending a greater amount of time at home, away from the office, their commute or the grind of their everyday lives. In fact, according to a national survey, reading, taking walks and spending time at home with family– have risen to the top of the list of activities that bring the most joy that people want to continue post-COVID-19.
And while these 'simple pleasures' are bringing many people joy, the majority are participating in these activities alone. With social distancing mandated across most of the country, most older Americans have not been able to see their loved ones in person. A national survey found that more than half (57%) of all people aged 65+ have missed hugs from a loved one since being in quarantine. This has also been difficult for the "sandwich generation" – a group of people who are tasked with caring for their aging parents as well as their own younger children. This has made caregiving services, like Comfort Keepers, even more critical during this time. On the National Day of Joy -- and everyday after that – the sandwich generation is comforted by the fact that even if they cannot visit or spend time with their loved ones, they are in good hands with a qualified Comfort Keeper caregiver.
National 2020 'State of Joy' Survey Each year, as part of the National Day of Joy, Comfort Keepers conducts a survey that polls Americans on their perspectives about joy, including specific activities that bring them happiness, evolving attitudes about joy in light of current events as well as overall opinions about the state of joy in the world. The survey was conducted from May 5-11 and polled 2,000 Americans; 1,000 of those surveyed were 30+ years of age with at least one living parent, and 1,000 were people aged 65+. Highlights from the survey are outlined below:
The World Needs More Joy
Ninety percent (90%) of people surveyed agree that "the world needs more joy."
Eighty-five (85%) percent agree that finding joy is more important now more than ever.
Eight in ten agree that the world doesn't seem to have as much joy as it used to.
Simple Activities Bring the Most Joy
Sixty-one percent (61%) responded that family dinners brought them the most joy. This was followed by:
Time spent outside (60%)
Watching a favorite TV or movie (58%)
Receiving a hug from a friend or loved one (58%)
Listening to favorite song (65%)
Joyful Activities Have Changed Since COVID-19
Many individuals are enjoying certain activities now that they did not have time to do before COVID-19, including:
Spending time with family (33%)
Taking walks (28%
Almost three-quarters (72%) agree that technology has brought them a lot of joy during the COVID-19 pandemic.
And while most surveyed wish to spend time with their family and friends in person after COVID-19, 37% agree that they will continue to video-chat with loved ones after the quarantine is over.
"The current environment has changed the way most of us live, work, play and experience joy," said McManus. "Many seniors – particularly those who live alone – have had to change their routines to ensure they are able to stay connected with friends and loved ones and get the practical, day-to-day help they need, like obtaining medications, shopping for groceries, cooking meals or housework. Finding happiness and joy in the evolving world we're living in is particularly important for a person's health and wellness."
Comfort Keepers prides itself on approaching caregiving differently. Rather than focusing on what individuals may be losing by hiring a caregiver, Comfort Keepers aims to change this mindset by concentrating on the freedom, and the joyful moments and experiences clients are gaining through caregiver relationships.
The National Day of Joy is being celebrated in more than 100 locations where Comfort Keepers has a presence and will include both virtual and local celebrations and various social media extensions. To participate in the National Day of Joy, do something that makes you happy, and share your activity on social media using #DayofJoy. For more information about the National Day of Joy and Comfort Keepers services, visit www.ComfortKeepers.com.
About Comfort Keepers® For more than two decades, Comfort Keepers® has been Elevating the Human SpiritSM through its in-home care network for seniors and other adults by empowering them to maintain their independence and realize joy in the everyday moments. Comfort Keepers is a division of Sodexo, the global leader in services that improve Quality of Life. Sodexo serves 100 million consumers each day in 67 countries, through its unique combination of On-site Services, Benefits and Rewards Services and Personal and Home Services. Comfort Keepers operates a franchise network that has grown to more than 700 locations around the world. In addition to providing services that focus on health care and senior markets, Sodexo's integrated offerings encompass more than 45 years of experience in reception, safety, maintenance and cleaning, foodservices, facilities and equipment management, and concierge services. For more information, visit ComfortKeepers.com.