Lighten the Effects of The Fear Factor
Varying amounts of fear accompany change. The amount of fear we experience often corresponds to how much we know about the change we are facing. What I have found in my life and with working with seniors the last 22+ years is;
The less we know, the greater the fear.
The more “what ifs” that can be addressed, as we prepare for a change or as we help someone else prepare for a change, the better.
Answers don’t always make change easier emotionally, but answers can ease the stress change brings mentally.
Questions about retirement living, no matter the level of care that someone is looking into, should involve matching needs. The more needs that are matched, the better.
Each of us have needs; some needs we share with others (food, water, shelter) and others are unique to us (how we live life and what things in our life bring us joy…painting, gardening, music, community involvement, church, etc.
The more needs that are met, the less severe the blow that change delivers.
When it comes to facing the fact that change is necessary in how and where we live, the following areas should be faced head on
-LOCATION… home town or closer to family
-SERVICES… transportation, dining, housekeeping & laundry
-AMMENITIES… exercise area, exercise class, gathering spaces for family and friends,
free beverages available (coffee, tea, hot chocolate, cappuccino & bottled water)
-SOCIAL OPPORTUNITIES… special dinners, special speakers and entertainment, community outings (shopping, community theater, symphony, community related events), card games, dominoes, in-house movies, etc.
-ACCOMODATIONS… apartment/room sizes and layouts
-HEALTH CARE SERVICES… CNAs, Medication aides, nurses, physical therapy services, etc.
-COSTS… rent, meals, etc.
-DISCOUNTS AVAILABLE… Veterans
The level of importance for each of these areas is as unique as the one we are assisting. That is how you should try and address each area. What is important to you or what is important to the special one you are assisting is paramount.