What can a personal care attendant do to motivate a senior?

Being a personal care attendant to a senior relative can be difficult because many senior adults believe that there is no reason to stay motivated. They have a “what’s the point?” type of attitude. Yet, many older adults wish to remain independent and will not consider how much inactivity can contribute to various health conditions that dampen their independence.

You may feel as though your work is cut out for you when trying to motivate a senior relative to live their life through activities and even exercise. With all of the health challenges they can face, elderly adults can sometimes create a mindset that is not easily changed. Staying patient, positive, and kind when trying to motivate your loved one can really go a long way. They will even experience more significant benefits if they begin early in the aging process, and understanding how to motivate their loved ones will help them to extend the quality of their lives.

Here are some tips to help you motivate your senior loved one.

Encourage manageable goals: Having goals to accomplish can instill a sense of motivation and pride when completed. You can create a few manageable daily goals and help along the way towards getting them finished. Even simple goals such as finishing a small crafting project or doing ten stretches can help make a big change in your loved one’s experience of the day.

Encourage self-identity: You can help to reaffirm your relative’s values, identity, and accomplishments by encouraging them to share their life stories through pictures and words. By surrounding them with positive memories by using postcards, images, music, posters, honors, movies, etc., and asking questions can really make their face light up as they begin telling you their story.

Encourage tech use: Using social networking can provide your loved ones with opportunities to connect with their friends and family. It is also a simple way for you to quickly check in on them and assess their mental, physical, and emotional well-being. Connecting over social networking will never replace the intimacy of face-to-face interaction. It is an excellent supplement and can help your loved one feel more connected every day.

Encourage usefulness: Feeling useful is essential for senior adults. If they cannot move so freely, you can identify and introduce your loved ones to tasks or topics that can make them feel wanted or needed. When you ask them for their advice on an important life matter or their opinion on a decision that you need to make, your loved one will feel that they are contributing to the lives of others.

A personal care attendant in Brookline and Boston MA encourages coping skills

It is vital for a personal care attendant to help a senior relative learn some coping skills as they begin to experience a decrease in cognitive or physical function. This will help them to transition with some dignity. You can try breaking tasks into smaller, manageable steps; help set realistic goals; give your relative a chance to do what they can while also helping just enough to finish the goal.

Our staff at TeamCarer can help create a plan and motivate your loved ones too. We provide team and technology-based care for in-home seniors who need daily living assistance such as bathing, grooming, dressing, personal hygiene, medication reminders, and other care needs. We are a local home health aid services company, with service areas in Boston, Brookline, Newton, Needham, Wellesley, Dedham, Westwood, Norwood, Medfield, Walpole, Canton, and Sharon. Contact us today to get started.