Research has shown that a person’s overall health is connected to their self-esteem. However, it is an aspect of wellness that can be overlooked in light of physical conditions and medication. So, what exactly is it? Self-esteem refers to a person’s confidence in their own abilities and worth. This can deteriorate over the years due to the changes that come with aging, but it is still invaluable in how an individual views themselves and the activities that they are able to take part in.
Having higher levels of self-esteem means that they will be more likely to try out new activities, have more hope for their future, and have a more positive self-image overall. Here are some ways that you can help to boost seniors’ self-esteem.
Maintaining Their Social Connections
Bolstering a person’s self-esteem is not something that needs to be done alone. Having a community of loved ones and family members can really help to validate a person’s worth and to remind them that they are loved and needed. More importantly, knowing that they have people that they trust and who will be there for them through thick and thin acts as a strong foundation for them to find support and to understand their place in the world.
Social isolation can lead to the decline of a person’s self-esteem and mental health. If you are living alone or have limited access to family, it is important to take time to participate in community events that promote meaningful social engagements and to form new relationships with like-minded people.
Preserving Their Self-Worth
There are many negative and unrealistic stereotypes in society now, especially when it comes to aging. On top of this, there can also be a constant influx of worrying headlines and problems that are happening around the world. When trying to improve a person’s self-image, it is important that information is curated to best reduce the amount of fake news and to ensure a better level of wellbeing. One clear example is in the beauty industry where wrinkles and white hair can carry negative associations. It is important to reassure your loved ones that these opinions do not affect their self-worth and that is nothing to be ashamed of.
Asking for Their Opinions
When it comes to self-esteem, it can sometimes be tied to the feeling of being needed. For most of our lives, we are either taking care of our loved ones or working in a role where we can contribute to a business or the society. This means that constantly resting and having no work during retirement can lead to the feeling of being useless and a lowered self-worth. One of the best ways to counter this is simply to involve your loved one in your everyday decisions. It can be as simple as asking them for their opinion on a recipe or for guidance on a decision that you are struggling with. Even if you don’t necessarily need help, this small step can help to boost their confidence.
Modifying Their Homes
Mobility can be a big factor in a person’s lowered self-worth. However, this does not have to be the case. By having non-slip flooring, conveniently placed handrails, and decluttering the commonly used areas can make sure that they have the confidence to move around safely without assistance. If this is not possible in their current living situation, it can also be an option to consider assisted living where they can reside in a thoughtfully designed accommodation for older adults.