Independence is craved by adults of any age. However, as people age, they can very often be denied autonomy because of that very fact, or they can simply lose confidence in their ability to do things. As it is very important for our mental well-being to live fulfilling lives, there are certain things adult children can do to help their elderly loved ones gain independence in their golden years.
Instead of concentrating on the negative aspects of ageing, focus on the good things in life. Adopt an optimistic mindset to boost the well-being and health of your loved one. Did you know that lifespan can be increased by 15% when someone practices positive thinking?
Sense of Control
There are few human beings who enjoy the feeling of not being in control. To seniors, autonomy and independence are very important. In fact, both cognitive and physical health are impacted by a person’s perception of how much control they have over their lives.
Help is not something you force on someone; rather, it is something you offer. Help is also not doing something for someone, but something you assist them with doing. Wherever possible, try to be sensitive of your loved one’s needs instead of simply taking over and doing things for them. This will help them maintain as much of a sense of independence as they possibly can.
Unfortunately, quality of life can be affected by the mental and physical changes experienced by the elderly. Seniors, just like everyone else, want to be recognized, and valued. When interacting with your aging parents, keep these things in mind:
- Show appreciation for the viewpoints of aging parents and keep an open mind, especially when it comes to decisions that involve them
- Always demonstrate patience and courtesy
For healthy relationships between parents and adult children, transparent communication is crucial. Exactly what is it, however, that adult children are supposed to do? What do their aging parents want from them? Here are some things:
- Be their advocate
- Take their concerns seriously
- Really listen to them and take their needs into consideration
When it comes time to solve a problem, always get your parents’ input into how they would like to go about it, especially if the decision involves them. Rather than telling your parent what to do, discuss the situation together and come up with a few solutions to facilitate decision making. Never assume you know what’s better for your parent than they do themselves. Having a say is a powerful tool for empowering aging parents, so make sure you have an open, clear, and constant dialogue about situations that involve them.
To gain the highest level of independence possible while living in a situation that promotes care, socialization, healthy living, and more, check out the Conservatory At Keller Town Center. In fact, why not schedule a tour to learn more about independent living in Keller, TX or join us on Facebook for Feel Good Friday?