Moving into assisted living can be a whirlwind experience. Not only do you have to discuss this next stage of your life with your loved ones, but you also have to find the right assisted living facility for you that caters to your needs and wants. Plus, once you know where you are moving to, you have to do just that – make the move.
Moving is a stressful time in everyone’s life, but it can become much more stressful for those who are older and may not have the physical capabilities to move boxes themselves. You may have to lean on your family, friends and moving professionals to ensure a smooth transition, which can only place more stress on your shoulders. Thankfully, there are ways to ensure that the downsizing process and the moving from A to B can become as streamlined as possible.
Read on for tips on how to downsize and move into assisted living with minimal stress.
Check What the Assisted Facility Has to Offer
Each facility will be different; therefore, it is essential that you see what they have to offer and speak with an employee to find out whether you need to bring certain belongings/furniture and know what is already provided. While you may want to bring your own furnishings so that the facility feels like home, certain arrangements may need to be made for this to happen and become a reality. Always head to their website and see what the facilities offer, and then if you need more information, contact them. Many assisted senior living facilities like Frontier Management provide information to explain what people can expect living there, while also having a number or email you can use if you wish to speak with an employee.
Discuss the Next Steps with Your Loved One
Whether moving to an assisted living facility was your idea or not, you will need to discuss the stages of downsizing and moving with your family so that everyone is on the same page and can lend a hand. After all, this is a huge undertaking and needs to be implemented properly so that nothing is amiss or goes awry.
Get the moving dates and ask your loved ones to come round so that you can put a plan and schedule in place. You may have to spend a few weekday evenings and weekends going through your belongings so that you are ready to package and box the items that you wish to take, but also be able to have someone help you throw away, recycle or even sell off your belongings if needed. If you are unable to drive, then having someone lend a hand and offer to move your belongings can be extremely helpful. You may also wish to ask them to help you move your belongings on the day, too.
Ensure that there is ample of time to sort through your belongings and make the move. Your loved ones will still have jobs and their own families to tend to, so if you need their help and support, you also need to ensure that you are working with their own schedule.
Go Through Your Items and Furniture
This can be a difficult task, especially if you have emotional connections to certain objects. While you may not wish to get rid of anything that you are too attached to, there will be items and belongings that you have no use for and that you will benefit from throwing away or passing on to someone else. Remember, you can always give family members heirlooms so that you know your beloved belongings are still in the family but not taking up any precious space in your home.
Make three piles when organizing your belongings. One pile will be ‘keep,’ the second can be a ‘maybe,’ while the third can be a ‘get rid’ pile. With the ‘maybe’ pile, you can always return to it and move things into the ‘keep’ or ‘get rid’ pile as you slowly start to see how much space you have left over or whether you need to be tougher and part ways.
Be Rigorous and Tough
We sometimes form emotional connections with items and belongings even if we have no use for them. Be tough and rigorous and get rid of them if you haven’t used them for a few months and if you have no use for them anymore. If you are unable to decide whether you need something, ask your loved one for their honest opinion. They may be able to shed some unbiased opinion on whether you need or have use for something or if it is simply cluttering up your house.
Organize the Belongings You Are Keeping
Once you have decided what you are keeping, it is time to organize them so that the moving process becomes easier and smoother. For instance, make sure all your belongings from the bedroom are packaged together and make logical sense. You do not want to open a box that is labelled ‘Bedroom,’ only for it to have kitchen appliances inside. Not only does this slow down the moving process, but it can also make the whole experience a lot more stressful. You should have boxes for each room so that when you are unloading the boxes from the van, you can place the boxes in the correct room and start unpacking with minimal hassle.
Box Them Properly
Refrain from dropping and throwing items into your boxes; try and package them nicely so that you minimize the risk of breaking your belongings but also causing problems when picking them up. Boxes that are not weighted properly, for example, can cause injury to a person who is moving them. You should also package the moving van or cars you are using so that the essential and most-needed items are transported first. That means kitchen equipment but also bathroom belongings.
Moving is stressful, especially when you are downsizing so that you can start your new life in assisted living. However, by following the above tips and speaking with the facility and seeing how they can help make the downsizing process easier, you can reduce the amount of stress for everyone involved.