Navigating the Journey of Senior Living
Did you decide to move for a more carefree lifestyle? Are you looking at options for a loved one who now needs more assistance than can be provided at home?
The journey is different for everyone. Add in different caregiving roles, family dynamics, budget, location and lifestyle considerations and you now know why senior living is no longer one size fits all.
That said, everyone’s journey should start in one place – with an honest assessment of your situation to identify what’s working and what isn’t.
Here are some areas to think about and assess: are they currently working, does the family want to manage, and should we get help?
- Personal Care
- Medication Management
- Home Maintenance
- Caregiver Stress
Whether you’re the one moving or you’re the primary caregiver, when considering a life change of this magnitude it’s crucial to get input from family members. They may offer conflicting opinions, may have thoughts or ideas you haven’t considered, or may affirm your decision. Regardless, everyone should feel valued and heard to foster a spirit of collaboration in the decisions ahead.
As a starting point, each family member involved in the decision-making process should put these considerations in order of importance (1–5). Have everyone complete his or her own, but do them at the same time if possible to align everyone’s goals on what is most important in your search.
Prepare for the Talk
If you suspect your loved one will be resistant to the idea of senior living, follow these tips to start the discussion.
Meeting Your Needs and Wants
There are non-negotiables and nice-to-haves in every major life decision—choosing a house, car, college or even a spouse. Senior living is no different! Identifying these early on can help you stay focused on your search so your needs and wants are met as best as possible.
We’ll get you started with a list of commonly requested features. Feel free to add your own, but keep in mind most senior living communities already offer the basics such as meals, transportation, housekeeping, linen service, maintenance and activities.
Levels of Living : Understanding your options
Senior living communities offer more care and housing options today than ever before. The abundance of choices can be overwhelming if you’re not prepared. Good thing you are! By having your most important considerations and what you want and need identified already, your family will have a much easier time finding the right community.
Head vs Heart
HOW DO YOU MAKE DECISIONS?:
Do you list pros and cons and go from there? Do you go with your gut? Somewhere in between? Emotions are said to drive 80% of the choices Americans make, while practicality and objectivity only represent about 20% of decision making.
WHEN TO HALT DECISIONS:
HALT is an acronym that stands for Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired. If you make decisions when you are one of these things, emotion wins 100 percent of the time!
Source: Psychology Today
There are many factors to consider – all of which we’ve laid out in an extensive toolkit including budgeting worksheets, Do’s and Don’ts for talking to loved ones, outlining levels of care, and more. Access it via the link below!