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Decluttering 101: New Year’s Resolutions for Seniors

It’s the dawn of a brand-new year! What are the best New Year’s resolutions for seniors? At Anthology Senior Living communities, the options are endless for a thrilling year ahead. As we start to create new year habits, some things have to go.

Starting the year off right often involves embracing new beginnings and making positive changes. For many seniors, this could mean embarking on a transformative journey of moving into a retirement community. As we welcome a fresh chapter, one significant aspect comes into focus – the art of decluttering.

Transitioning to a retirement community is not just about changing addresses; it’s about creating a space that reflects comfort, familiarity and a sense of home. Join us in this insightful blog as we explore decluttering tips for seniors, this transition and practical tips to ensure they begin this new phase of life on the right note.

Start With a Plan

Decluttering a space can be rewarding and fun but can also tend to get overwhelming for seniors. If you are making the transition into assisted living or memory care, you will find that most items do not need to go with you into your new home. The decluttering stage is what will determine if an item needs to:

  1. Go with you to your new home
  2. Be donated with other good-condition items
  3. Be thrown away

As you begin this process, start by taking it slow. One thing to remember in our decluttering tips for seniors is that moving can bring up mixed emotions for seniors. Do not try to tackle everything in one day – this will feel rushed, and your loved one may feel that they have lost control over what they can keep and what they must discard.

First, prioritize important items, such as important documents, keepsakes, jewelry and other sentimental items that you will want with you in your new home. Take this time to combine photos into photo albums or showcase your items into shadow box frames for a neat display at your new home.

If possible, make the decluttering process a positive group effort: Friends and family can help prioritize and decide if an item should be packed. Help evaluate items in the home, and place them into one of the three above categories: take, donate or throw away. Remind your family that this will likely be a smaller living space than the previous residence, so consolidation is key.

At this time, evaluate any furniture, dishes or other home items that you will take with you. It may be time to start fresh with a new bed or couch or to upgrade bedding and towels. You want your loved one to feel as comfortable and familiar in their new space as possible, so make this transition easier by getting new items that need to be replaced (always a fun part of moving into a new house!).

Even though your loved one will be able to dine at Anthology Senior Living’s exclusive Entice culinary experiences every day, make sure to pack a set of shatterproof dishes and silverware for snacks and meals in the home.

We have prepared a checklist for seniors of the basic items they will need when moving into a retirement community. Feel free to add to this list as you begin to pack. Pack all of the items that you know are definitely going with you, and set them aside for transport.

Moving Checklist for Seniors

  • Bedding and linens
  • Favorite photos and keepsakes
  • Beloved furniture pieces
  • Personalized decorations
  • Clothing and wardrobe favorites
  • Treasured books and hobbies
  • Music and entertainment
  • Grooming and toiletry items
  • Medical necessities and equipment
  • Important documents
  • Emergency contact information

When moving into independent living, assisted living or memory care communities, there are several things that you can pack to make your loved one feel familiar in their new surroundings.

Familiar bedding and linens: If you’re not buying new items, bringing bedding and linens from home can provide a sense of familiarity and comfort. This includes pillows, bedspreads and any special blankets that your loved one is accustomed to.

Favorite photos and keepsakes: Decorate the new living space with familiar faces by bringing along cherished photographs. Displaying pictures of family, friends and memorable moments can create a personalized and comforting atmosphere.

Beloved furniture pieces: Consider bringing a few pieces of beloved furniture. This could be a favorite chair, a small table or other items that hold sentimental value. Familiar furniture can make the new living space feel more like home.

Personalized decorations: Add a personal touch to the living space with decorations that reflect your loved one’s tastes and interests. This could include artwork, figurines or other items that hold sentimental value.

Clothing and wardrobe favorites: Pack a selection of favorite clothing items to ensure that your loved one has familiar and comfortable choices. Because laundry is complimentary at all of our Anthology Senior Living communities, there’s no need to overpack – 7-10 days’ worth of everyday clothing is more than enough. Don’t forget any special accessories or pieces of clothing that hold sentimental value.

If you are moving into our Anthology of Blue Ash community in Blue Ash, Ohio, don’t forget your swim gear and water shoes to enjoy at the state-of-the-art indoor swimming pool, one of the community’s best amenities! The spacious pool is also fully accessible for those who are using assistive equipment.

Our community in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania offers a fully equipped fitness center where residents can stretch, walk and exercise. Along with the signature Aspire Wellness program, there is a lot you can do to keep healthy. If your loved one is into working out at the wellness center, pack some lightweight wellness gear for them to wear while exercising.

Also bring …

Treasured books or hobbies: If your loved one enjoys reading or has a favorite hobby, bring along relevant books, magazines or crafting supplies. This can provide a sense of continuity and a connection to familiar pastimes.

Music and entertainment: Create a playlist of favorite songs or bring along a music player with beloved tunes. Additionally, consider packing DVDs or other entertainment items that your loved one enjoys.

Personal toiletries and grooming items: Bring the toiletries and grooming items that your loved one prefers. Familiar scents and products can contribute to a sense of routine and personal care.

Medical necessities: Ensure that all necessary medications and medical equipment are packed. Familiarity with medical routines can be reassuring, and having everything in order helps with a smooth transition.

Important documents and papers: Pack essential documents, such as identification, medical records and any paperwork related to the move. Having these items readily accessible can be important in case of emergencies or when settling into the new community.

Emergency contact information: Provide the community with a list of emergency contacts and important phone numbers. This ensures that the staff can reach out to family members or friends if needed.

By bringing these familiar items, you can create a sense of continuity and comfort for your loved one as they make the transition to a new living environment. Additionally, communicate with the staff at the community to understand any specific guidelines or restrictions regarding personal belongings.

Lifestyle at Anthology Senior Living Communities

Moving to a new community may seem daunting at first, but your loved one will settle in quickly and love their new home in no time! The best thing about living in one of our communities is the amazing amenities, events and services that are included in your residency. All of the services that you need are contained within your community – just steps from your front door!

Check out this video tour of our lovely King of Prussia community and get a feel for how upscale and robust this community is, packed with excitement, things to do and new friends to be made. This community, located in the Philadelphia suburbs, is among the best communities for independent and assisted living in Montgomery County, PA.

Anthology’s newest community, Anthology of Millis in Millis, Massachusetts, has an outdoor resident garden where residents can get their hands dirty and cultivate their own fresh food. We are always looking for new residents to join this fresh food initiative, especially those with green thumbs.

A big part of living at Anthology communities is enjoying the activities and events through our Elements life enrichment program, all planned for you to choose what you would like to do each day. With a variety of activities, and amenities such as Anthology of Blue Ash’s outside gathering spaces and terraces, you can get fresh air while joining your neighbors for a game of bocce or miniature golf. If you are looking for senior living in Ohio, you definitely can’t go wrong with our Blue Ash community!

When you’re hungry, it is our pleasure to serve you! Our Entice dining experiences are curated by executive chefs who prepare seasonal menus for our residents so you don’t have to plan and prepare meals. Craving something special? Ask the chefs to whip up your favorite – they’d be happy to, or they’ll make any dietary adjustments that you may need.

Anthology Senior Living communities span nationwide and have different levels of care. If you are looking for independent senior living in Massachusetts, assisted living in Montgomery County, PA or senior living in Ohio, we’ve got you covered! Contact us today and schedule your tour of the community closest to you.