Change is a normal part of moving through phases of life! Change can come in big forms, like relocating to a new home or city or small, such as the changing of the seasons. Embracing change isn’t always easy, but as we age, we should arm ourselves with a few skills to adapt:
1. Connect with Those Around You
Embracing change can be a real challenge for anyone, but it can be especially tough if you try to do it alone. Talking through your feelings and difficulties can significantly improve your ability to cope.
Friends and family may be able to help you see changes in a new light or suggest practical steps for accepting new developments in your life. Sometimes, simply talking about how you’re feeling can really help. Sharing your feelings may also help your loved ones uncover gaps or areas where you need support.
2. Embrace Routine
When we experience a change in our lives, focusing on routine is an effective way to get through the adjustment. Routine is something we can control and maintain and it can act as a constant when other parts of life are changing.
Routine can be as simple as making a cup of coffee and then going for a walk each day. Focusing on constants in your life and appreciating the stability of your daily habits can make embracing other areas of change easier.
3. Practice Shifting Your Mindset
Thinking positively about change may sound cliche because it is easier said than done. The ability to shift your mindset about an uncomfortable or uncertain situation doesn’t just happen overnight. Positive thinking and reframing your negative thoughts is a skill that requires repeated practice—no one gets it right all the time.
You can work with a friend or counselor to build your thought reframing skills. The next time you face a challenge or change in your life, you can use these skills to view the situation in a more positive light.
4. Plan What You Can, Accept What You Can’t
It’s impossible to be prepared for every scenario you will encounter in life. You simply cannot predict the future! Learning to accept what is outside your control is a very healthy skill to develop.
Planning for future expenses, such as long-term care, by being strategic with your spending and investments can help alleviate stress in the future. Another great example is staying on top of your household upkeep, so it is ready to sell or pass on. Preparing for what you can control will make unexpected changes easier to manage when they arise.
5. Take Time to Reflect
If you are experiencing difficulty embracing change, a helpful practice is to reflect on past experiences you’ve navigated. Most people don’t realize how much change they’ve experienced and adapted to before. The easiest way to do this is to make a list. Think about past changes in your life, such as:
- Moving to a new location
- Becoming a parent
- Starting school
- Starting a new job
Looking back at your list can serve as a helpful reminder of what you are capable of and make you more confident in facing future changes.
6. Listen to Yourself
During times of change, some people begin to doubt themselves and feel uncertain about the future. While these feelings are normal, that doesn’t mean you should ignore your feelings if something is genuinely wrong.
Sometimes, you may feel pressure about a change you do not want to make. It’s vital to be honest with yourself and communicative with those around you. If you have real concerns, share them with friends, family, or other trusted people close to you.
Embracing Change at Vineyard Senior Living
Vineyard Senior Living understands that embracing change for older adults can be difficult. We are dedicated to providing a safe and comfortable environment for all seniors that sets them up for success! Get in touch with us today to learn more about our communities and services.