Downsizing can be a very emotionally trying time for seniors, as it often comes as the result of losing a loved one or making the decision to move to an assisted living facility. These major life changes can be overwhelming, especially when one follows another, so it’s important to learn how to cope with them and get through this difficult process without falling into a depression.
Going through your belongings and deciding what to take with you can be tough, so it’s a good idea to have friends and family with you to help navigate and make those choices. Being prepared and having support are two major elements of being able to cope. In fact, if possible, pay a visit or two to your new home and look around at the space you’ll have. Draw a little blueprint or take some photos so that you’ll be able to visualize where your belongings will go.
Here are a few of the best tips on how to get started.
Whether you’re moving into a new home, an apartment, or an assisted living facility, it’s imperative to have support. Friends and family are one option, but you can also seek out a support group specific to what you’re going through. If you’re grieving, look online to see if there is a group near you for people who have just lost a loved one. Having an outlet and being able to talk about what you’re going through with someone who understands will really help you get through this difficult time more easily.
Do some decluttering
Take a look at your new home and assess the space. Downsizing means you won’t be able to bring all your belongings in the move, so it’s crucial that you do some research, measure, and think about the best ways to fill your new place. You need to make sure you’ll have plenty of room to move around, so overfilling it defeats the purpose of downsizing. Decluttering is an important part of this process, so think hard about what you really want to keep and why. If it’s something you haven’t used in a few months or more, consider donating it. Sometimes it’s easier to give something away to someone who can really use it than it is to think about throwing it away.
Invite family to help you
To take the edge off of deciding what to keep and what to get rid of, lighten the mood a little by inviting family members over to help you. Having your loved ones around you will make a difference when your emotions run high, but they can also assist you in choosing which pieces to take, packing them up, and figuring out how to handle everything else. You may have items you want to give your grandchildren, such as jewelry, or large pieces of furniture that you want to donate, and your family members can help you arrange for that.
It’s important to remember that you don’t have to get rid of everything that has sentimental value to you. There may be ways you can hang onto certain items but use them in a different way, such as taking baby clothes and making a quilt out of them. A good rule of thumb is to make piles for items you want to keep, piles for items you want to donate, items you want to sell, and items that need to be trashed. Start in one room and work your way out to avoid becoming overwhelmed.
Remember that this is a naturally emotional time, and you may feel symptoms of depression, such as sadness, having emotional outbursts, or having the desire to withdraw from friends and family. If those feelings arise, know that you’re not alone. Reach out if you feel you need support.
Whether you’d like to buy or sell a home, want to know how much your home is worth, or have general questions about our local market, give me a call at (831) 247-3803 or email me today. We’d love to discuss the market with you.
Thanks for reading & have a great day in Santa Cruz County or wherever you call home!
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