R.A.Koyama

Live Well, Live Happy, Live Long

Tag: aging parents (page 1 of 2)

Do You Consume everything you get?

Most of us don’t!

Many of us purchase food and don’t consume it all before its expiry date.  We also purchase clothing that we don’t wear.

We buy magazines we don’t read, and books we forgot we even had.

Life needs books

Life needs books

And today with all the information on the internet we often download “important” stuff that we never open.

That goes double for the things we get for free!  Why do we even accept it or download it?

Most of us do so because we perceived a need at the moment, but as time passes so does the need.

All this Stuff – Is it really all that important?

Is it any wonder then that we end up with so much stuff?  Our houses are cluttered with unused things.  Even our computer hard drives are filled to the brim with articles, books, reports and free stuff we will never use.

Adding to that are key things that we should be using.  If you have downloaded a book on some particular health issue then it should be read especially if it is your health issue.  Ebook readers are popular these days and almost everyone has one on some device.

ereaders save space and the environment!

e-readers save space and the environment!

The good thing about consuming books and articles this way is that you don’t have to worry about disposing of them when you are done.  And if you are concerned about the environment you won’t have to feel guilty about killing trees with your voracious appetite for the written word.

 

Digital isn’t always appropriate.

My books are almost all digital with exception of workbooks that requires written input if they are to be of lasting value.  I have and am considering making then in a format that allows the input to entered digitally, but have a concern that some of my reads will not be able to do so.  In the future, you may find that there will be an option for doings so.

On the topic of Stuff, we don’t consume and that litters our homes you can read my book that will help you to get rid of some the tangible items are actually not consumable.

The books is

Clean Your House Before You Go

New Book

 

 

Dealing with Family treasures

Make sure Family Treasures are more than just STUFF

 

well loved but the need has faded

Dying is the last thing most of want to think of let alone talk about, but there are just somethings that need considering.  Some of those things are what I wrote about in my newest book A guide to dealing with family treasures so your kids won’t have to – Clean your house before you go.

 

No, the book isn’t all doom and gloom about dying and who gets what.  Well, there is a little of that but mostly is it about getting rid of all the baggage and stuff we accumulate over a hopefully long life.  The younger we are, and when I say younger I’m thinking under 70, when we do this the easier it is and will be for everyone.  Just to give you and idea on what need looking after here is a short chapter from the book:

Your beloved, treasured Antiques are now just old stuff

Older isn’t necessarily Better

 

Now on to the wonderful days of garage sales, where you found a once coveted lace table cloth.  If you were once one of those happy individuals, it’s time to give up old habits.  I have on our property a Sea Can full of antiques and garage sale finds that an old friend asked us to keep when she moved out of the country.  What she hoped would be her stash for cash when she needed it has become an albatross around her neck.  She finds there is no longer a market for it.  In addition, where we live out in cow country with nary a neighbor for miles nor a place where garage sales are held, she has little hope for making a killing on it.  As we are now making plans to move to a smaller house closer to the city, she is challenged to find a way of getting rid of it from afar.

 

Another thing for you to remember is that if the desire for antiques is declining, and I know in some places it is not, but in general they are, what will the kids who may not have room for them do?  There comes that guilt again. They will have already gone through whatever guilt comes with losing a loved one, and now those feelings will return.  It is far easier for us to think that someone will want and cherish the family heirlooms.  In some place, they most definitely still do; the question is, will they have a place for it?

Minimalism Is In

 

Look at some of the designer magazines or even some of the house flipping shows.  Most have clean, sleek lines with no oversized bulging china cabinets.  Showcases have been replaced with stylish display shelves that won’t hold a collection of heavy vases or porcelain dolls.  Some looks don’t include dressers, as they opt for closets with built-ins and sliding doors behind which are rods and drawers all neatly placed.

 

Perhaps, it is the time to rethink our way of living.  Minimalism doesn’t mean doing without, and since we do less of what we used to do, regarding entertaining, minimizing just a little shouldn’t be too much of a burden.

 

Home sized matters

 

If you or your family live in a big city, where homes are small and condos are even tinier, space is at a premium.  Most of the furniture we had is now way too big to fit in these places.

For storage, there simply is none.  When you think about what you are saving for the kids, keep these things in mind.  There is a lot more to leave behind than just stuff.  Check out my article on Leavings.

 

 

 

Helping Aging Parents Make Difficult Decisions – Free Chapter

My Health is my concern, not yours

 

Aging Parents

Aging Parent

If that is not the case, it brings us back to that conversation being best served by having an understanding of your parent’s temperament.  If the conversation is started by suggesting it take place at the doctor’s office, you have already lost half if not all of the battle when it comes to talking about what the future should, could or will hold.  A conversation in this company will have already put the parent on edge and have them thinking you feel they are incompetent and that you need and support of the doctor to talk them into something they don’t want.  If you do in fact, need that support you will need to have a different conversation.  A conversation with the goal of getting your parents permission for you to discuss their health.

Ask for permission for Doctor Input

Doctors, as we age, become either our best friends or our biggest fear.  Sadly, too many of us as we age increasingly rely on medication to alleviate any and all aches and pains, both physical and physiological.   You will need to know what your parents’ feelings are with respect to their doctor and how that doctor is assisting them with their health care.

 

Once again temperament plays a big role in how all conversations will go. When it comes to health, the conversation should start with how they feel their health will be in the future and how it is now. Your goal here is to gain an understanding in a non-threating manner what your parent’s thoughts are when it come to their health.  This is not about the doctor’s opinion or your feelings. It is setting the stage for a conversation that may be the topic of a future conversation.

Speak of Now Not Tomorrow

 

When the conversation takes place, it is best started on what is happening now rather than just throwing out the doom and gloom of the future. It’s the age old question; which do you want first, the good news or the bad?  In this case always start with the good—how good your parents look, how something they are currently doing is a good idea.  To bring up the future, you need to tie it to the present.  For example: “Wow, Mom, you are looking pretty spry, those walks must be working.  How do you feel, do the walks make you feel more energetic?   Good, they say that is key to staying healthy.”  If your parents disagree that this has been helping them, they have opened the door for a talk about what they think could help them now and how they think it will change, for better or worse, as time goes on.

 

Keep the conversation focused on the now and let the parent direct it towards tomorrow and the future.  Doing so will help bring the true nature of the needed talk more easily into the conversation with much less stress for all parties.

 

In a nutshell, you talk about the good of today and let your parents introduce the potential changes of the future.  Use that introduction to speak of how things may change or need to change down the road, even if that road is just around the corner.

Do You Remember When Living required Less?

Do you remember when losing a family member seemed less complicated?

 

I would think many of us who have lived past the age of 60 has had to face the death of at least one or more loved ones.  These may have been our grandparents, or even aunts and uncles, but someone for whom we had great affection.  And even if we were not tasked with handling any of their affairs, we felt the pain of their loss.  Do you remember when an aunt, uncle or possibly one of your parents was standing there stoically accepting the heartfelt condolences of the people who had come to the funeral or as the call it these days “The Celebration of Life.”

Why was it that what was left when they were gone seemed much less that what is left from those we lose today.  Life in the times of our parents and grandparents seem to be lived with much less baggage.  Baggage in this context is stuff that we now seem to amass in greater quantities.

Having said all that, do you remember when the last time was that you considered what you could do to lessen the effect the loss of you might have on your children, family, and friends?

As we are blessed with living longer and the possibility of living in our homes until the end. Which one of my earlier books covered in details, the title of that book is Staying Home in Your 70s, 80s, and Beyond.

 

 

Cover-1

 

 

You can get a copy of that book by clicking HERE.

 

And while this is the wish we all have there is a downside.  We are also living with a lot more stuff.  Stuff that others will have to deal with.

 

 

Now may be better than later

 

For times like these, we often do our best to think of doing something later.  Well, later may not be that far away, so perhaps, now is a better time to consider what needs to be done.  When later arrives, we may not be capable of doing what we know should be done.  These should not be depressing thoughts.  We need to view them as something good we are doing for our families.  If we have negative thoughts about the things we should do and we are just downright disheartened to do, we should remember why we are doing them.    Our goal is to take care of things now, so they do not become a hardship for our families after we are gone.

 

Part of this post is an excerpt from my latest book – Clean Your House Before You Go.

Clean Your House Before You Go

New Book

Like it or not we are all going to leave one day.  When that time comes do we really want our kids to have to say good-bye over and over while they have to deal what we leave behind.

Hard Conversations

senior sail to the future

I have written about my current book project titled the Hardest Conversation and think that I should explain that it really speaks to helping aging parents live the best rest of their lives. This book is not about a parent in decline.

The reason this is the hardest conversation is because your parent(s) may/will be very much engaged with life when it takes place. Those parent(s) that are active, and energetic often do not consider the conversation relevant. It is diffcult at times even for ourselves to think about what we need to do or be aware of as we age. To my mind it doesn’t matter if your parents are 60 or 80 when you have this conversation, it is one that needs to take place. When you read the topics covered in the conversation you will see why I think that it will help you (if you are the adult child) realize that this is a discussion we all need to consider as we get older.

The time may come when each of us has to face the final conversation, but for now I think a focus to a bright and enjoyable future is more appropriate. Once this has been addressed no doubt there will be need for that book, but that is in the future. I truly believe that a happy today, pleasant dreams and goals for the future can make this conversation stay quite aways in the future.

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