Activities for People with Dementia That Develop A Sense of Purpose

Having a sense of purpose is an important part of life for everyone, and it is especially important for people with dementia. People with dementia may struggle with memory loss and changes in behavior, but engaging in activities that provide a sense of purpose can help to reduce symptoms and improve quality of life. There are many activities that can be beneficial to those living with dementia, and they can range from simple tasks like gardening or baking to more complex activities such as attending social events or taking classes. Here is a list of purposeful activities that can help cultivate a sense of purpose in individuals living with dementia. 

Puzzles, Memory Games, and Brain Teasers

Cognitive activities such as puzzles, memory games, and brain teasers are important for people of all ages. These activities serve as a form of mental exercise that can help keep the mind sharp and alert. They also provide a sense of purpose and accomplishment when completed successfully.

Additionally, they can benefit those suffering from dementia or other cognitive issues due to their stimulating nature. Puzzles, memory games, and brain teasers can help improve concentration, enhance problem-solving skills, boost confidence, and even increase self-esteem. Cognitive activities are an ideal way to keep your mind active and healthy while also having fun.

Swimming or Walking

Engaging in physical activities such as walking or swimming is an important part of staying healthy. For those with dementia, these activities can provide a sense of purpose and help to improve their overall well-being. Moreover, taking part in physical activities can help to slow the progression of dementia, as it can stimulate memory and cognitive skills. 

Socializing during physical activities can further help to maintain mental alertness and reduce feelings of isolation. It can support better sleep habits, which is especially beneficial for those with dementia. 


Participation in meaningful hobbies or crafts is an important activity for those with dementia, as it can help to provide a sense of purpose and structure. Such activities can help to alleviate feelings of isolation and boredom while also providing an opportunity to focus on something that brings joy and satisfaction. Crafting activities, such as knitting or woodworking, can provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction through the completion of projects. 

Fine Arts

Creative activities such as music, art, and theater can provide a great outlet for people of all ages. For some, these activities can give them a sense of purpose and accomplishment. For those suffering from dementia, creative outlets have been shown to be beneficial to their overall well-being. Research has found that engaging in music, art, and theater can help reduce anxiety, improve quality of life, and even slow the progression of the condition. Creative outlets can also help to stimulate cognitive abilities such as problem-solving and memory recall. They also offer a much-needed change in routine for those who may not be able to participate in more physical activities. 

Prayer and Meditation 

Participating in spiritual activities like prayer and meditation can provide a sense of purpose and peace to individuals. These activities can also help to reduce stress in our lives, as well as promote better mental health. For those suffering from dementia, engaging in spiritual activities has been found to be beneficial for slowing the progression of the disease. By engaging in spiritual activities such as prayer and meditation, individuals can experience a greater sense of peace and contentment, which can help to improve their overall quality of life. 

Consider Memory Care

Activities such as attending classes, joining social groups, and engaging in meaningful hobbies and crafts are helpful for those living with dementia. Engaging in such activities provides a sense of purpose and satisfaction, as well as a change in routine. These activities are also good for the mind because they are mentally stimulating and promote better sleep habits. Memory care communities offer these types of activities to residents every day. Contact Gardens Care at 303-566-1085 to learn more about our social programming activities for our memory care residents. You can even schedule a tour of one of our memory care homes.