You’ve finally done it; you’ve made the move to senior living and now it is time to get settled into a new chapter of your life! For many seniors, living in a senior living community looks very different. It may be busier, the food may be different, it may just feel, well, different. If you’ve recently moved to senior living and are looking for ways to get involved and make the most of this new season, here are some tips to help you get started.
7 Ways to Adjust to a New Senior Living Community
1. Give yourself time
Moving to senior living can be a big change. Do not rush yourself in adjusting to a new season. Appreciate the journey instead of just ‘getting through it.’ Take small steps every day, doing minor things to make your new senior living community feel like home. Take your time unpacking your boxes, decorating your new apartment home, and unpacking. Ask family and friends to help you unpack. You may find that you enjoy reliving memories as you unpack and even create new memories with family members as you move in.
2. Check out the activity calendar
Contact your community’s concierge to get plugged in. All Leisure Care communities have robust activity calendars and there is something for everyone. From gardening clubs and travel clubs to book clubs and foodie groups, you are sure to find something that piques your interest. Go through the weekly calendar and commit to trying one group activity per week. Try something new and you may ignite a new passion or find a new lifelong hobby.
3. Establish a routine
Once you find a few things that you truly enjoy doing, make it a priority to attend regularly. Regularly attending social gatherings will help you get to know the people in the group better. Commit to a few clubs or events and promise yourself that you will attend. Schedule it in your planner or on your calendar and bravely show up.
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4. Get to know your neighbors
One of the great things about senior living is that you live with your friends. Your next-door neighbors are in a similar stage of life and can likely understand what you are going through. Furthermore, everyone has been the new person on the block at some point. Everyone in senior living has made the move and been where you are. Leverage your common experiences to develop new relationships.
5. Join your community gym
Most Leisure Care communities feature PrimeFit, an exclusive and nationally branded fitness program built specifically for seniors. One important component of PrimeFit is group fitness, which is another great way to get to know others in your community. From chair yoga to tai chi and more, PrimeFit offers an array of classes for a wide range of physical abilities. Sign up for a class and meet a new friend. Or, better yet, ask your neighbor to attend with you!
6. Invite family and friends
Everything is better with a friend. If you are too nervous to try something new on your own, invite a family member or trusted friend to go with you. Chances are they want to see where you live and you will love showing them around your new community. It can be easier to talk to people you don’t know with someone that you do know. Ask them to stick around for dinner and meet new friends together.
7. Set small and realistic goals
All of the new opportunities available in senior living can be overwhelming. Don’t try to do everything at once. Establish daily, weekly, and monthly goals to encourage you. Maybe it’s trying a new hobby, or taking a new fitness class, or maybe it’s just walking across the hall to introduce yourself to a new neighbor. Small but steady steps will add up over time and make you feel at home in no time.
How did you adjust to life in senior living? Share your tips with us in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you!
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Retirement should feel like you’re on a permanent vacation which is exactly why our communities celebrate freedom from obligation, helping you pursue new interests.