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Making the Move to Senior Living – Step 1: Making The Move 

Making the Move to Senior Living: A five-part series from Sky Active Living 

Step 1: Making The Move
Step 2: Benefits of Independent Living
Step 3: Finding the Right Community
Step 4: Make Your New Space Feel Like Home
Step 5: Celebrate With Your Community

For many, having a conversation with loved ones about moving into a senior living community is an emotional experience that requires a delicate balance of honesty and an open mind. This is probably a decision you and your family have considered for months or even years. Even after thinking about it, you may be unsure if it’s really the right time to move. You may even have had some uncomfortable conversations with loved ones about it. There’s no need to stress or panic. 

First, it’s important to understand that your health and happiness can provide indications that it’s time to move before you realize it. If you are experiencing any of the following, it’s time to look at senior living:  

  • Decreased confidence behind the wheel and could benefit from transportation assistance  
  • Not cooking for yourself any longer  
  • Feelings of isolation and loneliness  
  • Lack of activities or hobbies every day  
  • Household chores are harder to keep up with  

While many of these signs can be monitored by you, they may be noticed by others first. It’s important to have honest and compassionate conversations with your loved ones to make sure this is the right decision for you. Ultimately, the decision to move is based on a unique set of factors for each person.  

If you are preparing to talk to your family and friends about senior living, here are some key points to remember as you think through this decision. 

THINK THROUGH YOUR GOALS, AND COMMUNICATE YOUR NEEDS 

Start by thinking through your goals and needs for retirement. Talk about it with someone who can genuinely listen to your desires while also being honest when needed. Remember that an independent living community would allow you to achieve your retirement goals, not impede them. Most of all, remember that this decision is yours, unless health and safety are factors.  

As time goes on, if your loved ones continue to provide suggestions and state their concerns, it may be time to listen. Sometimes, a larger meeting with other family members and a trusted friend or spiritual adviser is beneficial to provide as many perspectives as possible. Remember that these people care about you and your well-being, and they want what’s best for you.  

DISCUSS FINANCES  

The financial aspect of moving into a senior living community can be very daunting. It’s always important to understand your maximum budget before making the move. Veterans and widows of veterans may be eligible for Aid & Attendance benefits through the Veterans Administration if they meet the financial and medical requirements. Many communities will work with you and your family to come up with payment plans to make the transition as seamless as possible.  

ADDRESS YOUR FEARS  

A persistent myth about senior living communities that causes fear and anxiety is that making this move will steal your autonomy. Many people believe that senior living communities are extensions of hospitals – filled with very sick and inactive residents. Studies have shown that, on average, residents of senior living communities require some type of assistance but are highly engaged in the active programming their communities provide, such as nature trail walking groups and community service volunteerism. The right community will provide the assistance you need to retain your autonomy – allowing you to direct your time and energy into the people and projects that feed your passions and interests. You have worked hard and deserve to have a retirement experience that reflects your lifelong efforts.  

Independent living communities provide services that address the challenges that may be getting in the way of pursuing your passions and relationships. If you’ve noticed the following emotions often over the past few months, it’s time to think about your options:  

  • Ongoing frustration over challenges to participate in activities, such as lack of transportation 
  • Disappointment over not seeing friends as often  
  • Disconnection from the community at large 
  • Growing fatigue over caring for your home and keeping up with household tasks

EXPERIENCE A COMMUNITY FIRSTHAND  

The best way to see what life at a senior living community could look like is to visit. Let your recent conversations about your retirement goals guide where you decide to tour. Senior living communities aren’t “one size fits all.” Visit a variety of communities until you find one that caters to your needs and interests.  

Just getting started?

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Just getting started?

We’re here to help.