If you have an elderly loved one that will soon be moving to a smaller home or living in an assisted living facility, they may need some help with downsizing before they make this move. However, for many people, including elderly people who have spent their entire lives accumulating belongings, going through the process of downsizing can be incredibly difficult. Luckily, there are things that you can do to help with this.
To help you see how this can be done, here are three ways to make downsizing easier for your elderly loved one.
Set Some Guidelines For What To Get Rid Of
Walking into your loved one’s home and starting to throw away or donate things for them likely isn’t going to go over well. Rather, you should discuss with your elderly loved one your goals for downsizing and come up with some strategies to help make it more successful.
One of the best guidelines that you should encourage them to follow is the “One Year Rule”. With this rule, you encourage your loved one to get rid of anything that they haven’t used in the last year. For some personal items, adhering this rule might not work. But for most of the things that you think your elderly loved one should get rid of, using the “One Year Rule” as the basis for why they should get rid of it may help a lot.
Start In Less Emotional Rooms Of The Home
Once you’re ready to get started with downsizing with your elderly loved one, the place that you start in the home can make a huge difference.
Instead of starting with the room that likely has the most work to be done in it, you should try starting with rooms that hold few emotional items, like the laundry room or bathrooms. By starting in these areas of the home, you can get some momentum with downsizing before running into items that may be hard for your loved one to let go of.
Gift Items Rather Than Throwing Them Away
Sometimes, coming to terms with items from their home being thrown away or donated to people that they don’t know can be hard for your elderly loved one to stomach.
Something you can do to avoid this issue is to encourage them to give as gifts certain items to people they know rather than just donating them or throwing them away. This can help your elderly loved one be more accepting of parting ways with some of the belongings, as they will know that the things they love and have cherished will continue to be loved and cherished by the people who know them best.
If you have an elderly loved one that you’re wanting to help through the downsizing process, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you do so effectively.