We all have things we wish we’d done sooner. We are all busy. Life happens.
There’s always something to distract us from accomplishing certain things we know we should do. For many, it’s the fear of something vague that keeps us from acting sooner. Fear of failing, appearing foolish, fear of being alone, or fear of not having everything “just so”.
Since there is no better source for guidance on “regret avoidance” than people with life experience, we turned to our elders for perspective, asking what they wished they’d done sooner.
“I wish I hadn’t taken life so seriously, sooner”, says Morag, 88 years old.
“I’d probably be a lot easier on myself if I had to do it again. I wouldn’t take myself so seriously.”
Twice widowed, Morag is no stranger to hardship. She recommends being easier on your children and enjoying loved ones more. Morag moved to St. Albert Retirement residence at the end of 2019 from Kelowna, B.C. to be closer to her daughter.
And, before the start of the pandemic, she was happy that they spent time together, seeing some of the local sites. Calling the city of St. Albert, AB lovely, she does have one complaint though – the weather is cold!
Things may have changed dramatically over the last year, but Morag stays positive and engaged, maintaining much of her independence.
She enjoys the staff at St. Albert’s Retirement Residence, saying, “they are very nice and do a great job, especially given the circumstances. I have no regrets or complaints whatsoever about the residence”.
“I wish I had moved in sooner”, says Marie, 77, of the All Seniors Care Retirement Residence.
Like many people, she waited for a life-changing event before moving to a senior living residence.
“After 8 operations on my hip, I couldn’t manage everything for myself anymore.” At the time, transition to a retirement community seemed a bit overwhelming. “But, if I’d moved in sooner, it would have saved me some trouble!”
Having chosen an independent living suite, Marie maintains her autonomy and quality of life but has help available when she needs it. Surrounded by nature, parks, and amenities, the community is beautiful. “And the staff are wonderful”, she says.
While she wishes that she’d benefitted from the senior living lifestyle a long time ago, Marie is happy that she made the decision to move. “The staff are excellent, and the apartment is very nice”, Marie re-iterates. She likes everything about the place from the staff to the home-like environment, to the food prepared by certified chefs. “It was wonderful when I first moved in: exercise classes outdoors, the hairdresser coming in, and outings!”
Of her experience living in the St. Albert’s residence during a pandemic, Marie says, “Activities are scaled back, of course, but it’s still good and there’s something to do every day. Lots of games, arts and crafts, and hallway exercises.”
“We’re the safest people, here; safer than people on the street because the staff are careful and now we’ve had our [vaccines]. It’s very nice here.”
All Seniors Care Communities and Covid-19
As vaccinations roll-out across Canada, seniors living in residences are high the list! Health Canada is prioritizing residents and staff in community settings to receive doses as they become available. Based on variations to provincial rollouts, residents and employees in some communities have already begun receiving their first dose and are being scheduled to receive second doses of the vaccine.
Did you know that All Seniors Care communities, with it’s focus on independent living, are a lower risk setting? Residents do not spend time in each other’s individual living spaces, and communal areas are diligently monitored and sanitized. Employees and residents always remain at least 6 feet apart and wear masks correctly. Non-essential volunteers and visitors are not permitted.
To keep our residents active and engaged during this period of isolation, we have many daily activities scheduled and socially distanced national events! Keep an eye on our News and Events page to find out the exciting plans we have for February.
Don’t let missed opportunities turn into regret
Everyone has regrets in life, whether you still kick yourself for not spending more time with family or wish you’d picked a different career path, as you get older those regrets tend to start piling up. According to a 2016 survey, 32 percent of respondents said they regretted major life decisions they’d made, but many embrace newfound opportunity and re-chart their course.
To shift your focus, try these 5 simple steps:
- Acknowledge your regrets, then take action to move on.
- Practice the positive by looking for the silver lining.
- Find the humour in the situation.
- Access your actions and learn from them.
- Set new goals.
No matter your age, take a page out of Morag and Marie’s books: try different things, seek out new experiences, pursue your passions, and explore a new life plan.
More Senior Residences
We have many more senior living communities in Alberta that you can tour, including residences in Edmonton, Auburn Heights, and Sherwood Park. Wherever you are in Alberta, there’s a senior living residence that’s right for you. Give us a call and ask about our residences and how you can take a tour.
In addition to Alberta, you can also find comfortable living at our Regina community or a place in Saskatoon’s most desired seniors housing residence, Preston Park Retirement Residence. With retirement communities across Canada, there’s a location close to you.
Times have changed and older adults are proactively choosing retirement living. Attracted to the lifestyle, the services, and proximity to amenities, they stay for the peace of mind associated with knowing that their needs are being taken care of as the age in place. Read our senior living advice to find out more about how much we care.Editor and Writer: Julianna McLeod