Your senior years should focus on carefree living. For many older adults this means downsizing to an apartment or assisted living accommodations. A larger home may no longer suit your needs, requiring more maintenance and house cleaning than a smaller home. Staying in your current home may also pose health and safety risks if you live by yourself. This is especially true if you have mobility or health issues or if your neighborhood has changed so that you no longer feel safe.
It can be difficult for an older adult to leave their home particularly if it holds many family memories. Recognizing the benefits of downsizing and making the choice to move is preferable to being forced to move in a hurry later due to illness or injury. Today’s retirement and assisted living options offer safety, security, companionship, and activities. Take control of the situation by making the best choice now and deciding what to do with your accumulated treasures, memorabilia, and possessions.
It is never too early to get family and friends involved and think about what you would like them to have and what they would actually like. Often, we are misguided in what each family member really would like to receive. We forget that our family members have also accumulated many things over the years and that they are also looking for ways to simplify their lives and their spaces. They may not be able to take the family treasures and heirlooms you had envisioned them having. It is better to know this earlier to avoid the emotional strain and have time to deal with the logistics that go with such decision making.
Moving for anyone is a marathon and for seniors it has added stresses. This is not something that should be done quickly. Much is done today to ensure the quality of life for seniors in their homes. But let us not forget that we want to equally ensure that same quality of care in preparing a senior to relocate. Asking seniors to make rush decisions and perform physically demanding tasks are not in their best interest.
We all know that moving can be a real hassle, but that is especially the case when the moving party is elderly. Make your moving day more of a day of joy rather than a day of chore by considering options that will make the most of your time, allow you to keep control, and give you plenty of comfort. There are no shortcuts, so following these steps will help you keep organized and maintain sanity.
First off, we will have to say “Congratulations!” Why are congratulations in order? Because you have finally decided to uproot yourself and your worldly possessions so that your new neighborhood will be situated in a smaller residence or a senior community. Put in the effort to make careful preparations so that the move is ensured to be a smooth one.
Not setting aside the time to do so will only make problems more likely to surface on moving day and we would not want that. Rather than having a singular “moving day”, have several “half days” devoted to the moving process. Stay with family or friends; even get a hotel room so that you will be at ease with your time should moving challenges arise.
Do not permit the moving process to take away your control. Instead, empower yourself and maintain control at all times by processing how much energy, money, and resources you will need to fulfill your expectations. Ensure that all involved parties know exactly what you want to do and what degree of control you plan to exercise over the entire moving procedure.
Your helpers should know whether or not on that day you would want objective recommendations, more assistance, or you might possibly want to delegate some of the decision-making authority.
Although this can be a stressful situation, it is an exciting time in your life. Do not forget to pamper yourself after working so hard to move. Schedule something fun after you finish however many items are on your daily to-do list. Have your new home setup so the kitchen, bathroom, and closets are ready for you upon moving. Plug in night lights so that you will adjust better to the new environment.
Obtain a map (and several prints of it) of your new neighborhood so you can better learn your new community. Research what activities are available so that you can introduce yourself to your new neighbors and make new friends. They will be able to help you acclimate to your new location faster.
In sum, moving can be quite frustration, but it can be enjoyable, too, if you plan well. Always start early and take note of time, control, and comfort. With this mind, you should have a blast with your move. It will take some time to adjust to your new life and you need to give yourself time to adjust to your surroundings. It is equally important to remember that it also takes considerable time to plan ahead for creating that new life. Take the time required to make your move manageable and do not cut the planning short at the risk of your emotional and physical wellbeing.
For any further information, get in touch with Families in Need/Caring Transitions of South Florida. They are quite the experts when it comes to planning a smooth senior relocation and they will look after all the rest.