How to Find Joy Despite Living with Pain or Chronic Illness
Have you ever woken up and said, “It’s definitely going to be one of those days!” Maybe your alarm didn’t go off, the hot water heater decided to stop working, and the dog chewed up one of your favorite shoes overnight. Now consider if each day were “one of those days!” For someone living with pain or chronic illness (and that is the majority of the older adult population), routine struggles and challenges may be a given.
However, there are several steps that the elderly can take to discover and maintain a life of joy, even in the face of chronic illness. For instance:
- Follow passions. Discovering purpose and meaning in every day is essential – and achievable. Many older adults find fulfillment in helping and supporting other people. Others thrive on being lifelong learners. For some it might mean documenting the past for the following generation. Brainstorm ideas until you arrive at one that sparks passion, and then make it a reality.
- Practice a positive attitude. One great way to accomplish a more positive take on life is through journaling. Encourage your older loved ones to begin every day by constructing a summary of everything they’re grateful for that morning, even the relatively mundane: the smell of fresh coffee brewing, a pet curled up in a sunbeam, an upcoming lunch date with a friend. At the conclusion of each week, sit together and read back through the prior entries for a quick and reliable pick-me-up.
- Try to avoid negativity. Including a measure of positivity as outlined above can naturally bring about diminished negativity, but there are further steps which can be taken as well. For instance, provide for breaks from tasks that induce frustration, allowing needed time to de-stress. Put the emphasis on tackling tasks that can be accomplished successfully, and find an alternate solution for those that are too challenging, such as assigning those tasks to another relative or friend, or employing the services of a qualified professional.
- Leave the house. Sustaining as active a lifestyle as possible outside the home can be so energizing for older adults. Help your elder loved ones go out for hair appointments, shopping trips, visits with friends, and other fun outings, as much as they are able. Even simply going outdoors and relaxing on the front porch when weather allows can substantially boost someone’s spirits and outlook.
As the top provider of home care assistance in Pleasanton and the surrounding areas, it is our aim to help seniors attain the best possible quality of life at all times, even if they’re living with pain or a chronic illness. Our thoroughly trained and knowledgeable caregivers provide cheerful companionship, engaging activities, transportation, and more. Contact Hired Hands Homecare online or at (866) 940-4343 and discover the difference our in-home care services can make for your senior loved one!
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